Excessive sugar may make cereals and breakfast bars more delectable, but a recent class action lawsuit against Kellogg’s argues that the taste isn’t enough to justify the potential health risks. Several consumers recently filed a class action lawsuit against Kellogg’s, alleging that the breakfast food manufacturer uses excessive sugar in their so-called “healthy” products. Ring of Fire’s Farron Cousins discusses this with Scott Hardy from Top Class Actions.


*This transcript was generated by a third-party transcription software company, so please excuse any typos.

Farron Cousins:                  Most parents or consumers, adults, whoever you happen to be. If you wake up in the morning and go for a bowl of cereal, you typically know which ones are going to be just loaded with sugar. It’s gonna to be the colorful ones, the ones with the cartoon mascots. Yes, we accept that those cereals are packed with sugar. It’s one of the best ways to get your kids to eat them. Right? But other cereals, specifically those marketed as a healthy alternative, maybe it’s high in fiber, maybe it says it’s good for your heart. We’re finding out now that these are also packed with an insane amount of sugar that can be harmful to the human body.

Joining me now to talk about this is Scott Hardy from Top Class Actions. Scott, as I pointed out, look, we understand that there are plenty of cereals out there that are, you know, basically just sugar. You may as well just buy a bag of sugar, but there’s others that market themselves as having these huge health benefits. Like I’m a good cereal for you. I help your heart. I help with the giving you fiber. I have packed with iron and folate and other vitamins. Really a lot of them just packed with sugar though, right? Even the ones who market themselves as a healthy alternative.

Scott Hardy:                          Right, and that was kind of surprising to me when I saw this class action come through is that when I’m sitting there and I’m, you know, working out religiously and I’m trying to have a healthy breakfast before that workout, make sure that I’m doing things right. But some of those cereals are actually included in this class action. Raisin Bran, Frosted Mini-Wheats, Smart Start, these are cereals that have been marketed very heavily as part of a healthy diet and if you are trying to live a healthy lifestyle that you can eat that Smart Start, you think that it’s healthy when in fact this class action is Steven, that it’s really loaded with sugars and that it’s, it’s, it’s not healthy.

In fact, it’s not just those cereals. It also, this class action includes the nutrigrain bars, the nutrigrain cereal bars, fruit crunch bars. These fruit bars, the these, these nutrigrain bars that you might grab instead of having breakfast, you go ahead and grab one of those thinking that you’re having a healthy alternative. But nope, according to this class action filed by Jack Fitzgerald and his team, these are filled with sugar and actually could be toxic to your body.

Farron Cousins:                  And that’s what people need to understand here about this particular class action is that obviously ingesting too much sugar is bad for your body, but there’s also certain groups for whom it’s even worse than just bad. I mean, you have diabetics out there who may look at this cereal and say, oh, okay, this is a good, healthy alternative. I’m not going to get, you know, Trix, that’s just a sugar. No, I’m buying the healthy one because I have to be careful about my blood sugar levels and they’re getting all this sugar.

They may not realize it. That could be a disaster for these consumers to take this. Small children, maybe you say, I don’t want to go with the cartoon mascot cereal. I’m going to give my kids something a little healthier. Well now you’re packing them full of sugar that you don’t even know about. And as reports show that can actually cause a sugar addiction in children and you know everybody else as well. Can cause a massive addiction that has full blown withdrawal and craving symptoms.

You know, almost as if it’s, you know, packed with nicotine. But that is how addictive sugar can be to certain members of the population. This is a pretty big deal. You know, when you actually start to look at the science and realize how much these people are ingesting from these so called healthy alternatives. This is a massive health problem for this country.

Scott Hardy:                          It is. I mean I’ve heard that some studies compare to that sugar is more addictive than cocaine. And I went, oh my gosh. Now, frankly, you know, they say try to go to cut off sugar completely for a week, and I’m, I’m thinking about actually taking that challenge, but it’s going to be hard because you think that some of the things that are healthy, like a Smart Start cereal, even if you’re doing a of a low fat milk and all that kind of stuff, have a lot of these things still are packed with sugar.

And we may see more of these class actions get filed as more of our, of our food producers out there are using sugar and according to this class action, excess amounts of sugar to sell to the populist. And if it is toxic to the human body, as is stated in this class action, we’re going to see more sugar related class actions filed against these manufacturers that are touting their foods as healthy when in fact they are just jam packed full of sugar.

Farron Cousins:                  Absolutely. And in the meantime, consumers out there, if you’re trying to be healthier, if you have a health problem that limits your intake of sugar or even prohibits it, if you’re on a diet, whatever it is, make sure you check out that label, see how much sugar is in there. Also, check the recommended serving size as well, because if you say, oh, well, this one’s very low sugar, but you look in the serving size is, oh, a tablespoon, then yeah, you’re, you’re going to overdo it on that and get a lot more sugar than you want.

But also if you believe you have been affected by this issue, please follow the link in the description of this video. Head over to Top Class Actions. Get all of this information and more about all the issues consumers need to be aware of. Scott Hardy with Top Class Actions. Thank you very much for telling us this story today.

Scott Hardy:                          You’re welcome. Thanks for your time Farron.

Farron Cousins is the executive editor of The Trial Lawyer magazine and a contributing writer at DeSmogBlog.com. He is the co-host / guest host for Ring of Fire Radio. His writings have appeared on Alternet, Truthout, and The Huffington Post. Farron received his bachelor's degree in Political Science from the University of West Florida in 2005 and became a member of American MENSA in 2009. Follow him on Twitter @farronbalanced