Catherine Scott: The great breakfast dilemma

So Mars has taken the unusual step of virtually warning us that some of their products are bad for our health. They are planning to recommend that some of their sauces, such as Dolmio, should only be eaten once a week due to the high level of salt and sugar.

My first thought was wouldn’t it have been better for their PR if they had just reduced the amount of salt and sugar in their products ?
But then it got me thinking about the salt and sugar content in other foods and just exactly what are we supposed to eat.

While it didn’t overly surprise me about the ready meals and sauces as you have to have been living in a cave not to know that processed food equals high salt and sugar. But what about other food?

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It came to a head for me when trying to find something for breakfast - not my favourite meal of the day but as I have been long told that it is the most important meal of the day I make sure that I have something.

Clearly cereals are out - too much sugar, as are most mueslis - well the edible ones any way. Toast, another no, no - well it is if you need plenty of butter on it. I know what about good old eggs and bacon? You have to be joking if that fat doesn’t get you then the curing process will. Same goes for sausages.

So what’s left. Porridge I hear you shout. Well my husband swears by it and my children hide from the smell of it. I can stomach it but not without lashings of golden syrup which defeats the point somewhat.

Baked beans? Not too keen myself but even if I was they contain more sugar than the Dolmio sauce.

You can imagine my joy when I discovered a ‘nutrition extractor’ (smoothie maker to you and me) Here was my answer. Not only had I found the answer to my breakfast problem, but I had also found a way to at least make some inroads in to that troublesome five a day. So I busily went about whizzing up all manner of breakfast treats. My freezer became stocked with bags of frozen berries, mango and pineapple.

A selection would be blended with loads of spinach, sunflower seeds and flaxseeds - a superfood apparently - delicious and even better can be consumed on the go. However, it now turns out that smoothies can be as sugary as a fizzy drink, or God forbid, more than a Dolmio sauce. Apparently the average homemade smoothie contains 28g of sugar.

A new study in the British Medical Journal found that 40 per cent of juices and smoothies contained at least a child’s entire daily recommended maximum sugar intake of 19g (almost 5 teaspoons).

Maybe I should give up and just have a fry up.