How Many Bowls of Fruit Loops is That?

On the topic of food, my wife and I have a dirty little secret:Every now and then we give our young children a couple of FruitLoops (the cereal) as a treat. Normally we limit this to home– with the curtains drawn and the family committed to a vowof silence — but recently my wife made the social faux-pas ofactually packing some for an outing.

It wasn’t surprizing to me when the “I am the expert ofparenting everyone else’s kids” looks started coming our way: Theweak of this planet prop up their existence by spending theirwaking hours judging everyone else, and there are few things thatcan be openly critiqued with muttered comments and conveyedexpressions as children (I especially enjoy going to loud,boistrous family restaurants, where glasses are clinking andconversations are loud, and having angry-at-life individualscasting glares if my children dare to open their mouths, as ifthey’re having a fine dinner at an exclusive restaurant, and theirfoie gras, though strangely they cower under my returngesture. I have well-behaved, polite children, yet I’ve seen thissort of look far too many times to tolerate it anymore).

The reason that I’m open to occasional Fruit Loops, and I refuseto buy into the notion that they’re some sort of brain-addlingtoxin, is because I base my perception of reality upon facts ratherthan conventional beliefs. In the case of Fruit Loops, an entirecup of the stuff, dry, contains only around 12g of sugar. Soundsdaunting, until you realize that a cup of fruit juice contains from20 – 45g of sugar (not to mention having negligible nutritionalcontent apart from the Vitamic C that they stuff into every “fruit”product). A little 100ml container of yogurt (the kind that peopleactually eat) has about 7g of sugar.

This is only the start of the sugars that are in virtually everyproduct, which is why we started quantifying products by “how manybowls of fruit loops” (e.g. “Wow! One bar of this is 4 bowls offruit loops!”).

So a couple of fruit loops really isn’t that evil in the grandscheme of things. Or at least that’s what I’m telling myself.