Granola Is Dessert

I love granola! I wonder if the sugar is balanced with fats and protein, it does not negatively affect your blood sugar levels as much?

SFGATE: “Protein and fats by themselves do not affect blood sugar, but their nutritional impact might also help to mitigate the blood sugar effects of carbohydrates. According to a study published in 2006 in “The Journal of Nutrition,” when between 5 and 30 grams of protein or fat is added to a 50-gram intake of pure glucose, blood sugar responses significantly decrease, with protein having an effect approximately three times greater than that of fat. While this study was done with dissolved nutrients rather than solid food, it indicates that protein and fat could independently help control blood glucose impact when consumed with carbohydrates.”

I have no expertise in nutrition, but that is my personal experience. I used to have pre-diabetes (blood sugar levels around 106). By cutting out fruit juice and making sure I have protein at every meal, I’ve reduced my blood sugar levels into the 80s.

New York Times:

A cup of Nature Valley Oats ’n Honey Protein Granola has 24 grams of sugar and actually contains more sugar than protein by weight. Nature Valley also has a Peanut Butter ’n Dark Chocolate Protein Granola that has 30 grams of sugar per cup. Bear Naked Honey Almond Granola has 20 grams of sugar per cup.

By comparison, a slice of chocolate cake with frosting has 26 grams of sugar. A cup of ice cream has 28 grams of sugar. A regular Krispy Kreme glazed doughnut has 10 grams of sugar, according to the Krispy Kreme website…

Dr. Jackson was a health reformer who ran a sanitarium in Dansville, N.Y. — about 80 miles east of Buffalo — where he advocated vegetarianism and a diet of simple foods. His granula was probably not very tasty by today’s standards. But giving up ham and griddlecakes for simple grains often relieved indigestion and made a lot of people feel better, Ms. Carroll said.

Eventually, Dr. John Harvey Kellogg, another health reformer who owned a rival sanitarium in Michigan, stole Dr. Jackson’s recipe. When Dr. Jackson sued, Dr. Kellogg changed the name of his cereal to granola, which he and his brother, Will Keith Kellogg, experimented with, leading to the creation of cornflakes.

Dr. Kellogg wanted to keep his cereals sugar-free — he was a Seventh-day Adventist who famously advocated against alcohol, meat, sugar, tobacco and sexual activity. But his brother, Will, insisted on sweetening them, and the two parted ways. Will went on to launch the Kellogg Company, and its enormously popular sweet cereals, which eventually included Froot Loops and Cocoa Krispies.

While sugary cereals soared in popularity over the following decades, granola remained a mainstay in the Seventh-day Adventist community, which is known to shun foods high in sugar, salt and other additives. Packaged granola is believed to have first appeared in the 1960s when one Adventist and granola promoter, Layton Gentry — nicknamed Johnny Granola-Seed by Time magazine — sold his recipe of rolled oats, wheat germ and sesame seeds to two food companies. As granola crossed over from the Seventh-day Adventist community to the mainstream, it became increasingly laden with sugar.

About Luke Ford

I've written five books (see My work has been noted in the New York Times, the Los Angeles Times, and 60 Minutes. I teach Alexander Technique in Beverly Hills (
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