Top Ten Healthy Cereals for Kids

Getting the children to eat a healthy breakfast is vital. Breakfast is essential to a healthy diet and healthy lifestyle and plus, a child who has an empty, rumbling stomach can't possibly concentrate on his or her studies at school. But some children find it difficult to make time in the morning to eat breakfast, so this essential meal can be a hard sell in that regard. So some parents who can convince their children to eat breakfast end up sacrificing nutrition just so they can get a meal in their child's stomach before the bus arrives. The key to serving a breakfast cereal involves finding a cereal that the children actually want to eat. But often, the cereals that appeal to children aren't what appeal to the parents.

When selecting a healthy breakfast cereal for children, there's several things that parents must keep in mind. Firstly, flavor is vital. Children like sweet foods, but the cereal doesn't need to be packed full of sugar to be sweet. Honey and frosting provide a touch of sweetness without overwhelming amounts of sugar. The appearance is also vital in many cases. Children are attracted to bright colors, even when it comes to foods. So many kids' cereals use artificial coloring to make the cereal more appealing to kids, but this unnecessary coloring is often a turn-off to parents. Instead, opt for a cereal without artificial colorings, but find one with a brightly colored cereal box with cartoon characters that appeal to children.

Here's a look at ten healthy kids cereals that will fit the bill, appealing to both youngsters and parents alike.

* Flavored Quaker Oatmeal - Quaker Oatmeal is available in an array of flavors, from berry flavors, to maple, to cinnamon and spice, maple and brown sugar, apples and cinnamon or original. Opt for the original rolled oats or try the instant microwavable packets for quick preparation before school. Quaker Oatmeal even has a new formula with half the sugar, for kids who are already sweet enough.

* Original Quaker Oatmeal - Some children may not appreciate the apple chunks and other additions that are included with many of the Quaker Oatmeal variations that are available. So for these kids, try the original Quaker Oatmeal, which is sweet and nutritious at the same time - that's
 sure to please parents and the children.

* Cheerios - Original Cheerios are often introduced to children when they're toddlers, so parents can often get their foot in the door early on when it comes to serving Cheerios, which are tasty and nutritious. Cheerios are also easy to dress up with fresh strawberry chunks or fresh blueberries, adding even more flavor and healthy vitamins and nutrients to the equation.

* Honey Nut Cheerios - Honey Nut Cheerios are a sweet but healthy spin on a perennial favorite. Original Cheerios are usually among a toddler's first finger foods, but it can be hard to sell school-age children on original Cheerios when there's all sorts of sugar-coated alternatives on the grocery store shelves. Honey Nut Cheerios are the perfect solution - they're sweeter than traditional Cheerios and they still have all the healthy ingredients, but without all the extra sugar and artificial coloring found in many other kids' cereals. Another bonus? The cereal box features bright colors and a cute cartoon bee - attributes that attract children, making the cereal an easier sell on a subconscious level.

* Frosted Flakes - Frosted Flakes offer a great combination of healthy grains and nutrients, without artificial coloring, which pleases parents. And meanwhile the sweet frosting is kid-friendly. Another benefit? Kellogg's Frosted Flakes aren't overly sweet, so parents can enjoy this breakfast cereal as well. And don't forget about the cereal box, which is designed to provide a bit of child "curb appeal" thanks to Tony the Tiger.

* Honey Bunches of Oats - Honey Bunches of Oats use honey and other natural flavors to provide the sweetness that children enjoy. This cereal features chunks of oats and several types of flakes, which provide a unique and sweet taste unlike any other cereal on the market. This cereal (and the box) do have the appearance of a more "grown up" cereal, but the taste is one that appeals to all ages.

* Frosted Mini-Wheats - Kellogg's Frosted Mini-Wheats are healthy way to get children to eat one of the three recommended grain servings per day. They're packed full of grains and nutrients and they've got a sweet frosting to amp up the child appeal factor. And parents will enjoy the fact
 that Frosted Mini-Wheats are without the unnecessary artificial coloring and other additives traditionally found in kids' cereals. And like Honey Nut Cheerios, the box features a cute Mini-Wheat cartoon, which will bring added appeal to the equation for parents who are trying to convince the kids to try a new breakfast cereal.

* Rice Krispies - Rice Krispies are nutritious and free of artificial colorings, but they're also semi-sweet and fun to eat because no child can resist the "snap, crackle and pop" of Rice Krispies cereal, which makes it particularly attractive to youngsters. Another benefit? Parents can get their children to try Rice Krispies - which is half the battle - by making some homemade Rice Krispies Treats as part of a fun afternoon cooking project.

* Chocolate Rice Krispies - Kids who love chocolate may be more apt to try the chocolate version of Rice Krispies, which provide the same nutrition and fun "snap, crackle and pop" with a sweet chocolate flavor. Chocolate Rice Krispies are also great for parents who are trying to get their children to drink more milk because once the cereal is finished, the child is left is "chocolate milk" in the bowl and chocolate milk is usually an easier sell than the normal, "boring" white milk that adults tend to enjoy.

* Cinnamon Life - Life cereal appeals to many adults, but children may find this cereal a bit lackluster for their tastebuds. The solution? Opt for Cinnamon Life, which has some extra sweetness with all the same healthy ingredients of original Life cereal. Another benefit? Life is free of artificial rainbow colors and after a bowl of Cinnamon Life, parents can take the kids into the living room for a rousing round of the Life board game!

Another hint for parents: Consider introducing new cereals to children by offering cereal bars, which to children, look like a bit like a candy bar. Once the child tries and enjoys the cereal bar, there's a better chance the child will be willing to try a bowl of the new cereal!

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