Nutritional Quality of Ready-To-Eat Breakfast Cereals

Abstract: Objective: To identify whether there were differences in nutritional quality between organic and conventional ready-to-eat breakfast cereals of similar types, based on NuVal scores. Design: The current descriptive study analysed NuVal scores for 829 ready-to-eat breakfast cereals and eighteen different cereal types. ANOVA was used to compare the mean NuVal scores of 723 conventional cereals with those of 106 organic cereals. Setting: Ready-to-eat breakfast cereals (n 829) with NuVal scores. Subjects: Not applicable. Results: There was no significant difference in NuVal scores between conventional (mean 28·4 (sd 13·4)) and organic (mean 30·6 (sd 13·2)) cereal types. Conclusions: Consumers who choose the organic version of a ready-to-eat breakfast cereal believing that nutritional quality is superior may not be making a valid assumption. Public health nutrition educators must help consumers understand that organic cereals are not necessarily more nutritious and their consumption could result in excessive intake of undesirable nutrients, such as fat, sugar and sodium.

Reference: Woodbury, N., and V. George (2014). A comparison of the nutritional quality of organic and conventional ready-to-eat breakfast cereals based on NuVal scores. Public Health Nutrition 17(7): 1454-1458. Available online at