“Kellogg’s Frosted Flakes are fortified with 10 essential vitamins and minerals, have no cholesterol and are fat-free“, screams a box of uber-sugary, ultra-processed and super-refined cereal from the aisle. Oh, and they’re also a “great source of vitamin D“.
I have a huge problem with this.
Is anyone out there really choosing a box of Frosted Flakes solely because they’re looking for a way to get ten essential vitamins and minerals (which ten, by the way?)?
Fortification is the process of adding vitamins and minerals to food products that don’t naturally contain them. Fortified cereals contain nutrients lost during the refining process as well as additional vitamins and minerals that do not exist naturally in those grains. I repeat- foods that do not naturally contain said vitamins and minerals. How about opting for foods that do actually naturally contain vitamins and minerals? Kale and blueberries, anyone?
Starting in the mid-90s, fortification of enriched (“enriching” is similar to fortifying, but involves adding nutrients that originally existed in the food but were lost due to processing) cereal-grain products with folic acid has been required in the U.S. in an attempt to reduce the incidence of birth defects of babies born to mothers deficient in this vitamin.
No doubt, we need folic acid, but what’s wrong with getting it from:
romaine lettuce, spinach, asparagus, turnip greens, mustard greens, calf’s liver, parsley, collard greens, broccoli, cauliflower, beets, summer squash, papaya, strawberries, sea vegetables, cabbage, bell peppers, Brussels sprouts, leeks, fennel, tomatoes
We need to completely overhaul our thinking and get past the idea of peppering our processed junk with a vitamin derivative and trying to convince ourselves that’s a healthy approach.
It’s no different from heading out to a franchise burger joint, eating a Grade D meat concoction with a gluten-packed bun, topped with cheese-product that contains no cheese, corn-syrup-rich catsup and two cups of hydrogenated fries along with a multivitamin tablet and not only going so far as to calling it a wash, but purporting it’s a healthy, nutrient-dense meal.
This applies to all of us, regardless of how Paleo one is, if at all. There can’t possibly be an argument in favor of this concept being a great idea. In my opinion, it’s nothing more that another marketing ploy to continue to encourage consumers to keep buying the sugar in every way, shape and form, while placating and claiming these products are actually healthy options.
Let’s sum up with a comparison.
Which looks like a better choice for breakfast?
Milled corn, sugar, contains 2% or less of malt flavoring, salt, BHT for freshness. Vitamins and Minerals: Iron, vitamin C (ascorbic acid and sodium ascorbate), niacinamide, vitamin B6 (pyridoxine hydrochloride), vitamin B2 (riboflavin), vitamin B1 (thiamin hydrochloride), vitamin A palmitate, folic acid, vitamin D, vitamin B12.
Veggie Omelet with spinach, mushrooms, peppers and avocado and a side of berries.
Hmmm…. it doesn’t take a rocket scientist.
Let’s stop this nonsense and put an end to contributing to keeping these products on the shelves of our grocery stores. Money talks and lack thereof is the only thing that will make a difference in the eyes of the cereal industry giants.