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At Healthfully, we strive to deliver objective content that is accurate and up-to-date. Our team periodically reviews articles in order to ensure content quality. The sources cited below consist of evidence from peer-reviewed journals, prominent medical organizations, academic associations, and government data.
- Linus Pauling Institute; Whole Grains; Jane Higdon, Ph.D.; December 2005
- MayoClinc.com; What is the Special K Diet? Can it Help Me Lose Weight?; Jennifer K. Nelson, R.D., L.D.; August 21, 2010
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If you want to lose extra pounds, there are a multitude of diet plans available to choose from. If you've tried to follow complicated programs that didn't work for you or are just looking for a simple approach to losing weight, you may be considering a dry cereal diet. Consult your physician before starting any weight loss plan.
The Premise and the Plan
Dry cereal as the basis for a weight loss diet is appealing to some dieters because it provides a portion-controlled meal replacement that's quick and easy to prepare.
How to Lose Weight With a Cereal Diet
Study subjects lost weight by replacing two daily meals with one serving of cereal topped with 2/3 cup of skim milk and a 100-calorie portion of fruit, and choosing whatever they wanted to eat for the third meal 2. The participants reported increased hunger while on the cereal diet.
Like any diet that reduces calorie intake you can most likely lose weight with a portion-controlled cereal diet, such as the Special K Challenge, according to Jennifer K. Nelson, R.D., L.D., of the Mayo Clinic. The lack of fruits, vegetables and other healthy food choices may leave you feeling too deprived and hungry to stick with the plan long enough to meet your goal. The might regain the weight you lost when you resume your old eating habits, since long-term weight control is dependent on healthy diet and lifestyle choices.
Choose a Healthy Cereal
Choose healthy cereal if you're going to follow a cereal diet, since it will be a major part of what you eat. A healthy cereal is high in fiber, low in sugar, fortified with vitamins and minerals and made with whole grains. Read nutrition labels and pick cereals that contain at least 2 gm of protein, 3 gm to 5 gm of fiber and 10 to 25 percent of the daily value of important vitamins and minerals in each serving, and less than 8 gm of sugar and 3 gm of fat. To find a cereal that contains whole grains, look for a whole grain -- such as whole wheat, whole rye or oats -- listed as the first ingredient. Pour a cup of milk on top, since cereal is typically low in protein, calcium and vitamin D.
- Choose healthy cereal if you're going to follow a cereal diet, since it will be a major part of what you eat.
- Read nutrition labels and pick cereals that contain at least 2 gm of protein, 3 gm to 5 gm of fiber and 10 to 25 percent of the daily value of important vitamins and minerals in each serving, and less than 8 gm of sugar and 3 gm of fat.
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Special K Vs. Slim Fast
A List of Cereals Containing Vitamin K
Mayo Clinic 1,200-Calorie Diet
How to Lose 10 Pounds in a Week With a Vegetarian Diet
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Soup & Cereal Diet
The Top 10 Weight-Loss Programs
Gianna Rose is a registered nurse certified in hospice and palliative care, as well as a certified wellness coach. She completed Duke Integrative Medicine's Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction course in 2009. Rose also holds a Bachelor of Fine Arts from the Savannah College of Art and Design.