Wednesday, May 13, 2009

FDA warns a leading breakfast cereal brand.

Are you among the many who were diagnosed with high cholesterol sometime back and the only change you made was to switch to eating the whole grain oat cereal that the manufacturer's claimed will reduce your bad cholesterol? If you think that just changing your breakfast cereal to the "healthier" one is going to do the trick-you are wrong!!
The FDA has issued a warning letter to Cheerios, a leading breakfast cereal brand for misleading consumers .The letter points out that the claims on Cheerios Toasted Whole Grain Oat Cereal makes it sound more like a drug to prevent and treat heart problems and high cholesterol.
Though Cheerios says that their claims is based on the proven fact that soluble fibre from whole grains has been associated with reduced risk of heart problems,the FDA points out that the claims that Cheerios is making that "eating it alone can reduce bad cholesterol by an average of 4%" is inappropriate. The approved health claim about heart disease is supposed to mention fiber, fruits, vegetables, and a low-fat diet -- not just whole-grain foods.
The bottom line-no one particular food can magically reduce your cholesterol levels.It is a combination of eating plenty of whole foods,along with fruits,vegetables and reducing the total fat in the diet along with a good exercise regimen that will help to keep you healthy.
Read more:
  1. WebMD: FDA warns Cheerios on Health Claims.
  2. FDA: The warning letter issued to Cheerios
Question: Do you think somebody/some agency should keep a check on the claims made in advertisements or should it be left on the consumers to decide whether the claims are genuine or not?

21 comments:

Chow and Chatter said...

well said I was thinking about posting this but you saved me the trouble he he he love ya

angiesappetite said...

Hey Sweta! I saw a brief discussion about this on the Today show this morning! Interesting...I have to agree that some foods take their marketing claims a bit too far. Thanks for sharing!

Smitha said...

True. Exercise is key. Then a well balanced diet too.

Balance, Joy and Delicias! said...

I can't believe that even cereals are in danger nowadays!

Malar Gandhi said...

You are doing an excellant job by posting these informative facts. Great job buddy.

the ungourmet said...

I grew up on Cheerios and I still enjoy them. I just eat them because I enjoy them and not for the so called health benefits.

I had not heard about this. I will have to check it out.

Renu said...

thx for sharing

Gina said...

I love that you wrote this post. I have always thought it was so strange that cheerios has that health claim since it only has ONE gram of soluble fiber in a whole cup!! I mean, that's barely anything. I love cheerios, and I think they are a great snack and breakfast (especially for kids), but come on! I wouldn't ever suggest them for the reduction of cholesterol.

Jenn said...

I read about this yesterday. I'm just like The Ungouremet. I ate them not for their nutritional value. I just like the taste.

burpandslurp said...

I've never ever trusted commercial cereals. but not so glad to find I was right.

Ramya Vijaykumar said...

I saw this today morning and the use of lipitor over the cereals tomake it heart haelthy comment too... Lets see whether they take the line off or not!!!

Sweta said...

Reb-loved the news update about the fridge :)
Angie-so true,the advts makes it look like some miracle!
Smitha-well said.
Coco-they are not dangerous,the advertisements are just misleading!
Malar,Renu- :)
Jenn,Kim-no need to stop eating them!
Sophia-good for you girl.
Gina-thanks for the info about the soluble fiber content. Not much at all-like you pointed out!

Sweta said...

Ramya-yes,let's see if they do change their USP!

Pooja said...

I agree..Eating whole foods and exercise is truly the best way of diet control! Have to wait n see what Cheerios comes up with next!

5 Star Foodie said...

It's unfortunate that the commercials always exaggerate quite a bit about the product. My family still likes their Cheerios although they like Honey Bunches of Oats even more.

Smitha Suresh said...

That a public warning was issued is really great for consumers who are genuinely concerned about their health. We in India should look at creating a regulatory body which advertisers / manufacturers of food products would have to go through and get approval and only then publish their ads in any kind of media - what say we look into how to do that when you get back?

Sybil Hebert, RD said...

Great post Sweta- thanks! I definitely think that claims and labeling should be regulated.

Michelle @ Find Your Balance said...

After working in advertising for many years I can tell you that they will do anything to confuse consumers into buying their product. No matter what regulations exist, it will always be up to us to use our brains when making food choices!

Anonymous said...

Having somebody regulate this is good. Most people don't have the time to research and find out if the advertised facts are accurate. In some cases, it may not be possible without a lab! I don't have on in my garage.

Sunny said...

That's funny, I remember seeing that commercial on TV about Cheerios... companies definitely need to be careful about health claims. I know that the healthy fast food company that I market products for periodically goes through all the distributors websites to make sure we're not making health claims. It keeps us from running into trouble!

Sweta said...

Pooja-yes,let's watch and see.
Natasha,Smitha,Sybil,Anon,Sunny-looks like the FDA has done a good job.
Michelle(didn't know you worked in advertising-how exciting):the consumers should use their brains,but most of the times they just blindly follow advertisements!