Mom always said that breakfast was the most important meal of the day. Some people think that was just an old wives' tale, but recent research says otherwise. Studies have shown that people who start the day with a good breakfast burn more fat and have more stable blood sugar levels all day long. And the definition of a "good" breakfast includes, according to the United States Department of Agriculture's (USDA) website, ChooseMyPlate.gov, whole grains. Whole grains may help lower your risk of heart disease, add valuable fiber to your diet, and are a good source of B vitamins, folic acid, iron and magnesium.
Organic is better
If you've committed to including more whole grains in your diet, then make those grains organic. Organic cereals are grown without pesticides, herbicides or toxic fertilizers. Products labeled "organic" by the USDA cannot have fillers or additives, either. So, when you serve your family organic cereals, you know that they are getting natural, whole grains and not coloring, stabilizers, flavoring or dye.
Cooking whole grain hot cereals is easy. Rolled grains -- such as oat meal -- cook the fastest. For four servings, simply bring 3 and 1/4 cups of water to a gentle boil. Add 1/4 t salt and stir in 2 cups of rolled oats. Let simmer over medium-high heat for five minutes, stirring occasionally. It's that simple.
If you prefer cracked or whole-kernel cereals, you can speed up the cooking time by soaking them overnight in water in the refrigerator. For an even quicker breakfast treat, add the cereal to a wide-mouthed thermos the night before. Add salt, if desired, and cover with the proper amount of boiling water. Seal the thermos tightly, and in the morning -- voila! -- hot, fresh cereal for your family's breakfast.