Updated: Aug 13, 2020
Part I: Breakfast cereal has become a staple for many active people because it is a convenient, satisfying and delicious meal! Moreover, some scientists believe that a bowl of whole-grain cereal with milk is not only a nutritious morning snack, but also is a great way for fitness lovers to recover after exercise, instead of using expensive and often unnecessary sports drinks. Besides, what can be easier, right? Grab your favorite cereal box, a glass of cow’s milk or fortified plant-based substitute and… voila! Instant snack whenever you need it!
The key to remember, however, is that in order to maintain our top-notch performance, it cannot be just any kind of cereal…We need to choose whole grain varieties that are naturally high in fiber, protein, vitamins and minerals, while avoiding those with high sugar, artificial colourings or preservatives. This is because the latter will give us only “empty” calories and little nutritional value. Moreover, the plain sugar added in these cereals is a simple molecule, which is digested and absorbed almost immediately. As a result, some may experience rapid spikes and sharp drops in blood glucose and a decreased level of performance as a result.
To know which cereals to choose, we can start by finding the list of ingredients on the box. They are conveniently placed in descending order by weight, meaning that the ingredient present in the biggest amount will be listed first. So, there we have it: go for cereals with whole grains listed first and sugars listed as far to the end as possible. And if you are like me and have a sweet tooth, just add raisins or your favourite fruits/berries to spark some sweetness and natural flavour!
Energy support (carbohydrates and healthy fats, iron, vitamins B)
Muscle support (protein, magnesium, antioxidants, vitamin E)
Energy support (lactose sugars and fats)
Muscle support (protein, potassium)
Bone support: (calcium and vitamin D)
Extra Tip: This snack is high in fiber, so give yourself enough time to digest it before a workout!