Breakfast cereals aren’t always the healthiest breakfast choice, but they’re fine to include in a low cholesterol diet as long as you choose the right ones. There are two things to check on the back of your cereal box to see whether it’s cholesterol-friendly:-
Is it low in saturated fat? It should contain less than 1.5g of sat fat per 100g.
- Is it high in fibre? It should contain at least 6g of fibre per 100g.
Dietary fibre helps to lower cholesterol, so the more fibre in your cereal the better. There are plenty of breakfast cereals that are low in saturated fat and high in fibre, but a lot of them also have a lot of added sugar. It’s best to buy zero or low sugar cereals, then add your own sweeteners if you need to, like a bit of honey, some berries or chopped banana.
Best Choices – No Added Sugar Cereals
These four breakfast cereals are all low in saturated fat, high in fibre and have no added sugar, so can be eaten frequently as part of a heart healthy diet:-
- Alpen No Added Sugar
- Good Grain Puffed Wheat
- Nestle Shredded Wheat
- Post Grape Nuts
Next Best Choices – Low Sugar Cereals
These two breakfast cereals are all low in saturated fat, high in fibre and low in sugar, so can also be eaten frequently as part of a heart healthy diet:-
- Fuel10k Apple Cinnamon Low Sugar Granola
- Weetabix Original
Other Choices – Higher Sugar Cereals
These eight breakfast cereals are all low in saturated fat and high in fibre, so they’re cholesterol-friendly by definition, but they’re also relatively high in sugar so shouldn’t be eaten as frequently:-
- Kelloggs All Bran
- Kelloggs Bran Flakes
- Kelloggs Sultana Bran
- Nature’s Path Honey And Chia Superflakes
- Natures Path Mesa Sunrise
- Nestle Shreddies
- Quaker Wholesome Goji Berry Granola
- Weetabix Crunchy Bran
Extra cholesterol-lowering tip
To increase the cholesterol-lowering benefits of my breakfast cereal I like to add a tablespoon of one or more of these cholesterol-lowering foods:-
- Flaked almonds
- Chopped walnuts
- Raisins or sultanas
- Chopped apple
- Ground flaxseeds
- Toasted sunflower seeds
Alternatives to breakfast cereals
I tend to alternate between different breakfasts, rather than eating the same thing every day, as it stops me getting bored and also gives me a wider range of nutrients. Although breakfast cereals are really convenient, there are plenty of cholesterol-friendly alternatives that don’t take too long to prepare. Here are my favourites:-
- Porridge – this is probably the best cholesterol-lowering breakfast you can eat, and if you add other cholesterol-lowering foods like almonds and chopped apple, you can pack a lot of nutrients into one meal. Here’s a recipe for my favourite cholesterol-lowering apple and cinnamon porridge.
- Homemade Muesli – this is another great cholesterol-lowering breakfast option if you make it with oats, nuts, seeds and dried fruit. My favourite homemade muesli is rolled oats mixed with flaked almonds, ground flaxseeds and goji berries.
- Wholemeal Toast with Almond or Peanut Butter – this is a really quick and simple cholesterol-friendly breakfast to prepare, and tastes great with chopped banana on top. Make sure you choose the ‘no added sugar’ varieties of nut butter.
- Oat Pancake with Yoghurt – this makes a great weekend breakfast and the oats and ground flaxseeds will help to lower your cholesterol. See my recipe here.
- Wholemeal Toast with Smashed Avocado & Poached Egg – the healthy fats in the avocado and fibre in the toast will help to lower your cholesterol, and the egg will add extra protein to your breakfast.
For more cholesterol-friendly breakfast options, see this blog post.