Q: Are commercial breakfast cereals a good choice for a bodybuilder or should I be making my own version?
A: With the huge range of breakfast cereals available nowadays, it’s really a matter of being a discerning shopper. While the majority of them are laden with refined white sugar and salt, there are commercial cereals available that are low in sodium, low in fat and, even better, high in protein. In fact, recent additions to the breakfast cereal market include products made with soy flakes, which can up the protein content four to six times. Nextra Protein Crunch, for example contains both whey protein concentrate and soy protein isolate. A typical serving contains 17 grams of protein, 14 carbohydrate grams, a gram-and-a-half of fat, and just two grams of sugar; all in 140 calories. Protein Plus cereal, using a combination of soybean concentrate and corn flakes, has 12 grams of protein, 24 carbs, a gram of fat, and 12 grams of sugar in 140 calories.
Clearly, any of those gimmicky cereals that are targeted at eight year old’s are deserving of a wide berth. Rather you should check the nutritional label for a product that provides at least two grams of fiber and less than five grams of sugar per serving. The first ingredient listed on the box should be a whole grain. Check, too, to see if any of the ingredients contain the words “partially hydrogenated.” If they do, leave it alone – it means that the product contains trans fatty acids. Trans fatty acids are very dangerous and have been linked to heart disease AND, they will hinder a bodybuilder’s efforts to get lean.
To avoid such dangers, you could very well circumvent the whole commercial breakfast empire by doing it yourself. Here’s a recipe for homemade granola cereal that is a lot cheaper, and healthier, than anything you’ll buy at the grocery store:
Home-made Cereal recipe (makes about 20 servings):
Ingredients – 7 cups quick cooking oats, 1 cup wheat germ, 1 cup wheat bran, 1/2 cup vegetable oil, 1/2 cup honey, 1/2 cup water, 1 tablespoon vanilla extract, 1 teaspoon salt, 1 cup chopped dates, 1 cup chopped pecans, 1 cup flaked coconut (optional).
1. Preheat oven to 275 degrees F (135 degrees C).
2. In a large bowl, mix oats, wheat germ, and wheat bran.
3. In a medium bowl, blend brown sugar, vegetable oil, honey, and water. Mix in vanilla extract, cinnamon, nutmeg, and salt. Stir the brown sugar mixture into the oat mixture until evenly moist, and transfer to a large, shallow baking dish.
4. Bake 45 minutes in the preheated oven, stirring every 15 minutes, until lightly brown. Mix dates, pecans, and coconut into the dish, and continue baking about 15 minutes. Allow to cool, and store in airtight containers.
No comments yet.
Sorry, the comment form is closed at this time.