I know, I know, I've been a bit crazy with the reviews lately (this may or may not be the last of them for a little bit). I don't normally review what I would call "diet foods", but when given the opportunity to review Fiber One's new 80 Calorie Honey Squares cereal, I took the offer so that I can highlight some issues I feel needs to be addressed in concerns to diet food. First, though, let me review the cereal.
(I was given the chance to review Fiber One's cereal on two separate occasions, one from MyBlogSpark.com, who is hosting the giveaway, and another was a representative who contacted me. Since it won't make any sense to blog about the same product twice, I'm mentioning it all in this post.)
Fiber One 80 Calorie Honey Squares cereal features lightly sweetened wheat and corn puffs. They're like the grown up version of Captain Crunch, but obviously with better ingredients. Fiber One cereals contain 10 grams of both soluble and insoluble fiber, or 40% of the Daily Value of fiber per serving. Since it contains both forms of fiber, it packs a double punch in terms of helping to keep you satiated, as well as offering more health benefits. The cereal, which tastes like pancakes, has a crispy crunch and a light texture.
Another interesting ingredient I haven't seen used as often is inulin, a starchy substance that's naturally occurring in many plants. It has many different health benefits, and since inulin isn't easily absorbed by the body it doesn't affect blood sugar the way other foods might, making it a good choice for diabetics who need to keep blood sugar illnesses at bay.
The sugar content comes it at a low 3 grams per serving, though that is due in part to sucralose. I'm not a fan of artificial sweeteners because of the after taste they leave, and in general I'm opposed to replacing sugar with sugar substitutes because it could possibly keep us from balancing those foods out due to the lower calories. Just because a cookie or cake has 75 less calories because of a sugar substitute, doesn't mean we need to eat it everyday. I also think it tastes too sweet and makes me crave more sugary foods in general.
Coming in at a mere 80 calories per serving, not including milk or any fruit added, it really is a light cereal. The price tag is a bit steep, $4.49 a box, though many cereals these days are around that price. Fiber One 80 Calorie Honey Squares can be found in major grocery stores nationwide.
Now, not pertaining to this product in particular, my issue with "diet" foods is that it gives us an unhealthy perspective on everyday eating. We really don't need special foods to lose weight or shape up, although they are convenient. It's important to learn how to tailor normal foods to fit into our lifestyle, which is how we'll be able to stick to our goal long-term. If we solely rely on weight loss products, we'll never be able to gain a strong foundation for healthy eating with regular, everyday items. Every now and again, these products are beneficial, but I make it a habit in my life not to rely on powders and supplements. Instead, I strive to eat a balanced diet that works well for my needs. I'm constantly having to adapt, though it's all in the name of learning. If I were trying to lose weight, cereal alone wouldn't do a good job of keeping me full. I last longer when I've had some protein, and I think that's true in general for most people. Maybe my body burns through fiber and carbs quickly, I don't know.
If you'd like to try out the cereal for yourself, enter to win a box, and an armband with a pedometer. Fiber One is trying to help keep you moving, and a pedometer is a good way to track how many steps you take. Set up is simple and you can import data to your computer. The armband can fit a small phone, or your pedometer.
- Leave a comment and let me know what your healthy breakfast is.
- Leave a comment on Fiber One's Facebook page, posting I entered @She Runs, She Eats giveaway for Fiber One 80 Calorie Cereal at http://bit.ly/p9w4gr for an additional entry. Leave a second comment to let me know.
Contest ends Saturday, August 6 at noon, and is open to US residents.