So You Think Natural Cereals are Good for You?

The shelf tag to the left was fastened to an empty store shelf where the Kashi cereal once was.  The tag explains to customers why the Green Grocer natural and organic food store in Portsmouth, R.I., no  longer carries Kashi cereals. / The Green Grocer.

Controversy erupted when  this health food store removed Kashi from its shelves. They tacked a note to one of his store shelves, telling customers he wouldn’t sell the cereal because he found out the brand used genetically engineered, non-organic ingredients.

Photos of the note began popping up on Facebook pages and food blogs as some consumers claimed Kellogg was misrepresenting its cereal. So now Kellogg, who produces it Natural brand under the Kashi label, is facing anger on social-media sites because of complaints that its popular Kashi brand of cold cereals doesn’t live up to the company’s “natural” billing on ads and boxes.

Kashi is just one of many brands that major food brands market under to sell to the “Natural”Crowd. For example Coca Cola markets under the brand Adwala. These are the “natural” looking juices you see in the grocery store.

But is Natural really Natural or is it just another way to sell the regular ole stuff at a higher price? Research reveals that these Natural brands perpetuating a myth and confusing consumers about the difference between conventional products that are marketed as natural and the nutritionally superior organic products .

The soy in Kashi cereals comes from soybeans that have had a gene inserted to protect the soybeans from the herbicide Roundup, which kills weeds so they are Genetically modified. Soy Beans are one of the highest genetically modified food along with corn.

Okay I have to put a plug in here for Shaklee products. Shaklee Corp does make soy products but they use Non GMO soy…in fact they have a seed identity program that allows them to track the seed so there is no GMO seed.

Did you know that the FDA does not regulate the term “natural” and most green consumers feel betrayed knowing that Kashi uses GMO and contain pesticide residues in their cereal.  It seems that the Green Grocer in R.I is one of the few stores who have removed Kashi from it’s shelves. I would bet that Whole Foods still has them on it’s shelf.

Unfortunately many people are duped my these natural labels assuming that the are getting non genetically modified pure foods….Natural is jut marketing hype. Unfortunately the US is one of the few countries that do not require food companies or stores to label GMO foods. So you go to the store for some nice yellow summer squash. And drats you realize that summer squash along with yellow corn, sugar beets, soy products (except Shaklee and a few others) and others. To see a complete list go to a project that Shaklee Corporation supports called Healthy Child and see their list of foods that are often GMO. Click here for list

If you own an android phone here is a phone app was created to help you find and avoid GE ingredients wherever you shop. This guide gives you valuable information on common GE ingredients, brands to look for, and look out for, and common sense tips to keep you in the know. There is also a printed PDF if you don’t want to download the phone app.

Below is an interesting video on the cereals that often labeled natural and misconstrued as organic.


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About the Author

Caroline Heinemann has a Bachelor’s Degree in Education from Concordia Teachers College in Seward Nebraska. She has coordinated a variety of educational programs in her local community and conducts regional business training events and teleconference training calls. She become personally interested in health when she experienced some personal health issues and found that alternative medicine has been the key to her health. She shares tips on staying healthy. She is a former and teacher and has owned her own health education business for the past 30 years

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