Cream of Wheat has been a staple in American households for decades and is considered a healthy cereal to start the day with. Is Cream of Wheat healthy or does it leave much to be desired health-wise? Depending on how high your health goals are, it can be a little of both.
Before we begin, it’s important to remember that packaged goods are often times highly processed. This has a way of reducing the health benefits of foods even if the ingredients themselves might be considered healthy by most. It’s always healthier to prepare food ingredients naturally.
General Information about Cream of Wheat
Cream of Wheat is a type of porridge that is made out of farina. Farina is a kind of wheat that is milled, sifted and then cooked to a creamy consistency. There are many kinds of farina-based cereal products available that are sold by different names. They are all generally the same thing and offer the same kinds of health benefits.
Cream of Wheat products come in a variety of flavors to suit different tastes. They are also packaged differently and may contain different cook times depending on how they are packaged. This makes it convenient to enjoy Cream of Wheat at home or on the go.
When cooked over a stove, it can be prepared using water or milk. When it is prepared with water only, it still keeps it’s creamy consistency. This is much to the delight of those who are lactose intolerant.
- Wheat Germ.
- Calcium Carbonate.
- Guar Gum.
- Ferric Orthophosphate.
- Vitamin A Palmitate.
- Natural Flavor.
- Thiamine Mononitrate.
- Pyridoxine Hydrochoride.
- Folic Acid.
- BHT (preservative).
Dangers of Cream of Wheat
Remember that there are always negative consequences to processing foods in an unnatural manner. But it doesn’t always mean the food product is necessarily unhealthy; it’s just something consumers need to be aware of in order to make healthier food choices.
1. Natural Flavors
There isn’t much of a difference between natural flavors and artificial flavors in an ingredient list. Natural flavor consists of chemicals coming from natural sources that are then enhanced and added back into the food. They might be perfectly safe, or they might not be.
2. Filled with Gluten
The question,”Is Cream of Wheat Healthy?”, does not apply to you if you are allergic or even sensitive to gluten. But there are alternatives to Cream of Wheat that are gluten free. These are usually organic; however, they cost a little more.
The additive and preservative BHT has been known for many years to be a cancer-causing agent. This was due to experiments that were carried out on animals. These experiments showed that sometimes BHT would cause cancer and other times it wouldn’t. That’s enough of a reason to avoid BHT altogether.
Are There Benefits for Cream of Wheat?
Is Cream of Wheat healthy when consumed regularly? It’s a good source of iron due to the high levels of ferric phosphate. One serving of Cream of Wheat provides as much as eleven milligrams of iron. Iron is one of the key nutrients responsible for moving oxygen throughout the human body by way of the red blood cells.
This creamy cereal is also a good source of daily fiber. It has enough fiber to have been recognized by The Whole Grain Council with a 100% Whole Grain Seal on its package. With 42 grams per serving, it’s a good source of daily fiber.
Is Cream of Wheat healthy when it comes to vitamins? It has been fortified with vitamins which include a one percent daily value of calcium, Vitamin E and K. It contains much higher amounts of vitamin A, B6, selenium, thiamine, folate, niacin and riboflavin.
So, let’s say you’re trying to lose weight. Is Cream of Wheat healthy enough and low fat enough to eat regularly? Although it only has 0.6 grams of fat in each serving, which is one cup, it has about 30 grams of carbohydrates as well. Too much in carbohydrates can turn into fat, so it’s important not to get too much more after that.
The Bottom Line
Is Cream of Wheat healthy enough for your daily consumption? Cream of Wheat is fortified with enough vitamins, iron and fiber to start the day with, and that’s for sure. Fiber helps with more than just constipation and weight loss. People who eat plenty of fiber everyday have less of a chance of developing diabetes and diseases of the heart.
It’s just important to eat a well-rounded and healthy diet as a whole. We have probably all heard that plenty of fresh fruits and vegetables and conservative servings of meat is the way to go for most people.
If you know any more about the health value of Cream of Wheat, you are encouraged to comment. Any remarks that add informational value to this issue are more than welcome.