Is Weetabix a healthy choice for breakfast?
Yes, Weetabix is a relatively healthy choice for breakfast due to its high fiber content and added vitamins and minerals.
Continue reading to find out more and check your knowledge!
Ingredients to be cautious about
- Added sugar: Contributes to weight gain and can increase the risk of obesity.
- Cocoa powder: May contain high amounts of sugar and fat, contributing to weight gain and obesity.
- Wheat starch: Can lead to rapid spikes in blood sugar levels, increasing the risk of weight gain and diabetes.
- Sat (short for saturated) fat: Consuming too much saturated fat can increase the levels of bad cholesterol in the body, increasing the risk of heart disease and obesity.
- Sugar: Can contribute to weight gain, increase the risk of obesity, and may increase the risk of cancer.
Possible short-term side effects
- Weight gain
- Increased risk of obesity
- Rapid spikes in blood sugar levels
- Increased risk of diabetes
- Increase levels of bad cholesterol in the body
- Increased risk of heart disease
- Increased risk of cancer
Possible long-term side effects
- Weight gain
- Rapid spikes in blood sugar levels
- Increased levels of bad cholesterol
- Heart disease
- High in fiber
- Good source of iron
- Contains several B vitamins
- Low in sugar
- No artificial sweeteners or colors
- Added vitamins and minerals
- Made with whole grain wheat
- No processed oils
- Vegan-friendly (excluding Melts flavor)
- Steel-cut oats
- Greek yogurt
- Whole grain toast
- Fresh fruit
Did you know...? 🤔
Is Weetabix high in fiber?
Does Weetabix contain added sugars?
Is Weetabix suitable for vegans?
I’ve been hooked on Weetabix cereal ever since I visited England five years ago. The texture is unlike anything I had growing up, and it can be eaten so many ways. But is this healthy-looking cereal actually good for you?
Weetabix is made from whole grain wheat, which gives it more fiber than most cereals. It does have added sugar, but not much—less than 1 gram per biscuit. Weetabix is also a good source of iron, vitamin D, and several B vitamins. This makes it a relatively healthy choice.
Below, I’ll dig into the details of Weetabix ingredients and nutrition facts. I’ll answer questions about Weetabix’s glycemic index, whether it’s good for weight loss, whether it’s okay to eat it every day, and more.
Is Weetabix Good for You?
Here are the nine specific questions I’ll be answering about Weetabix nutrition. Click any of them to skip ahead to that section—or just keep scrolling to read them all:
- What Is Weetabix Made Of?
- Is Weetabix Low in Sugar?
- Is Weetabix Low Glycemic?
- Is Weetabix High in Fibre?
- Is Weetabix High in Iron?
- Is Weetabix an Ultra Processed Food?
- Is Weetabix Good For Weight Loss?
- Is It Ok to Eat Weetabix Every Day?
- Is Weetabix Vegan?
1. What Is Weetabix Made Of?
Let’s start by looking at some actual Weetabix ingredients. Here are the ingredients for five popular Weetabix products sold in the United Kingdom:
|Weetabix Original||Wholegrain Wheat (95%), Malted Barley Extract, Sugar, Salt, Niacin, Iron, Riboflavin (B2), Thiamin (B1), Folic Acid.|
|Weetabix Banana||Wholegrain Wheat (95%), Sugar, Malted Barley Extract, Flavourings, Salt, Niacin, Iron, Thiamin (B1), Riboflavin (B2), Folic Acid.|
|Weetabix Crispy Minis (Chocolate Chip)||Wholegrain Wheat (89%), Sugar, Plain Chocolate (12%) (Sugar, Cocoa Mass, Cocoa Butter, Emulsifier: Soya Lecithin, Flavouring), Salt, Flavouring, Iron, Niacin, Thiamin (B1), Riboflavin (B2), Folic Acid , Vitamin D.|
|Weetabix Protein||Wholegrain Wheat (92%), Wheat Gluten, Malted Barley Extract, Sugar, Rice Flour, Wheat Starch, Wheat Germ, Sat, Cocoa Powder, Niacin, Iron, Riboflavin (B2), Thiamin (B1), Folic Acid, Vitamin D.|
|Oatibix||Wholegrain Oats (97%), Malted Barley Extract, Sugar, Salt.|
Here’s what I notice about these ingredients:
- Weetabix is made with whole grain wheat. In fact, the cereal is about 89% to 95% whole grain wheat, depending on the product line. The exception, of course, is Oatibix, which is made from whole grain oats.
- Weetabix has added sugar. Every Weetabix product I reviewed has added sugar, and most have malted barley extract, which is another sweetener. However, some of these cereals have quite a bit more sugar than others. See a chart of their sugar content below.
- Weetabix is free of artificial sweeteners or colors. Weetabix has fairly simple ingredients, and there are no controversial artificial sweeteners or colors like sucralose or red 40.
- Weetabix has added vitamins and minerals. This is only a small benefit, as these nutrients are quite common, and they’d likely be absorbed better from whole foods. But it may provide a small benefit. (Oatibix doesn’t seem to be fortified like the others.)
Overall, Weetabix ingredients are pretty simple. It’s whole wheat, a few ingredients for flavor and sweetness, and then some fortified nutrients.
The key to whether Weetabix is “healthy” may have to do more with the numbers, rather than the ingredients list itself: How much sugar is there? How much fiber? What’s the glycemic index?
So let’s take a closer look at those areas next.
2. Is Weetabix Low in Sugar?
Weetabix Original is quite low in sugar, with only about 0.8 grams per biscuit. Other flavors like Weetabix Chocolate have as much as four times more sugar. But that’s still only around half as much sugar per 100g serving as in popular American cereals like Frosted Flakes.
Weetabix markets their cereal as “Low in Sugar.” But what counts as “Low”? Let’s take a look at the specific numbers. And let’s see how it varies between the Original product vs other flavors:
|Weetabix Flavor||Sugar per 100g|
|Weetabix Crispy Minis (Chocolate Chip)||17g|
If you’re struggling to imagine what a 100g serving of Weetabix looks like, it’s about 5 biscuits of the full-size Weetabix.
So Weetabix Original has less than 1 gram of sugar per biscuit. I would agree that’s pretty low! But the story changes a bit if you look at Weetabix Banana flavor, or the Chocolate Chip Minis.
The Weetabix Banana Flavor has about 3 times as much sugar as Weetabix Original. And Weetabix Chocolate has about 4 times as much sugar as Weetabix Original.
Even those higher-sugar Weetabix flavors are relatively low in sugar compared to popular American cereals, though. Frosted Flakes has 35 grams of sugar in each 100 grams, so about twice as much as even Weetabix Chocolate (17g).
But there’s something else to consider when thinking about sugar content, too: Glycemic index (GI).
If you’re concerned about your blood-sugar levels, it’s important to remember that carbs get broken down into sugars in your body, too. And quick-digesting carbs can spike your blood sugar, too, even if they’re not “sugar.”
So let’s look at glycemic index next.
3. Is Weetabix Low Glycemic?
Weetabix scores “medium” on the glycemic index when eaten alone. When eaten with semi-skimmed milk, it has tested as “low” on the glycemic index.
There’s actually been some controversy about Weetabix’s score on the glycemic index. Back in 2012, Weetabix was slammed by an advertising watchdog for making a misleading claim about the product’s “slowly released energy.”
In their own defense, the Weetabix company cited a research study in which the cereal scored a 47 on the glycemic index when eaten with semi-skimmed milk. (Any score below 55 is considered “low.”)
However, the problem is that Weetabix only scores as “low” on the glycemic index when eaten with semi-skimmed milk. If you eat Weetabix by itself, it scores as “medium” on the glycemic index. (source)
Of course, most people do not eat Weetabix dry by itself. It’s almost always eaten with milk. But the advertisement didn’t specify that, and Weetabix was ordered to not make the potentially misleading claim again.
Now, before moving on, I want to add: Glycemic index scores for foods can often vary from study to study—and interestingly, from person to person. So I wouldn’t put a ton of stock in the precise numbers cited in GI studies.
If blood-sugar control is important to you, then I’d be a bit cautious with Weetabix. On the positive side, yes, it’s a high-fiber food made with whole grain. But it’s also processed into thin flakes that can be digested more quickly than in-tact grains.
As explained in the “Whole Grain Hierarchy” video by Brenda Davis, RDN, whole grain cereals like Weetabix are generally not quite as healthy and low-GI as in-tact whole grains.
So, proceed with caution. You may want to test your individual blood-sugar response to Weetabix before assuming it’s an optimal choice for you.
Looking for a sign that it’s time to take charge of your diet? This is it. Watch the Food or Health Masterclass—completely free—and discover the 10 surprising nutrition breakthroughs everyone should know. Reserve your free spot here!
4. Is Weetabix High in Fibre?
Weetabix is relatively high in fiber, with about 10 grams of fiber per 100 grams of cereal. That is about four times as much fiber as Corn Flakes, or ten times as much fiber as Rice Krispies. Also, Weetabix has about 75% as much fiber as shredded wheat cereal.
Here is a table showing exactly how Weetabix compares to several other popular cereals for fiber content:
|Cereal||Fiber per 100g|
As you can see, Weetabix is by no means the highest-fiber cereal… But it’s a relatively high-fiber choice, thanks to being made from whole grain wheat.
- Is Weetabix Good for Constipation? Does It Make You Go to the Toilet? Weetabix is a good source of fiber, which can help relieve constipation. However, Weetabix is not quite as “heavy duty” as ultra high-fiber cereals that specialize in this purpose. Weetabix only has 1/4th the fiber content of the cereal named “Poop Like a Champion,” for example.
5. Is Weetabix High in Iron?
Weetabix is a good source of iron. It supplies 12mg of iron per 100 grams, or about 2.3mg of iron per Weetabix biscuit. In a 100g serving, Weetabix has 86% of the Reference Intake (RI) for iron, based on the needs of an adult with a 2,000 calorie diet.
If you need to improve your iron intake, I have a special tip for you: Eat vitamin C at the same meal as your Weetabix. Vitamin C is shown to improve absorption of nonheme iron when eaten together.
6. Is Weetabix an Ultra Processed Food?
I’ve been in the nutrition space for a while, and I haven’t seen an official definition of “ultra processed food” that is fully agreed upon. That said, I would not classify Weetabix as an ultra processed food. Here is why:
- Weetabix is made of mostly whole grain wheat. The wheat flour is less processed than the “white flour” or “enriched flour” that is much more common to see in packaged foods.
- Weetabix has less than 1g of sugar per biscuit. Weetabix does have added sugar, but it’s not much. In each 100 grams of cereal, Weetabix Original has only 1/8th of the sugar found in Frosted Flakes.
- Weetabix has only 280mg of sodium per 100g. Unless you’re on a very strict low-sodium diet for a specific reason, this is a completely reasonable amount of sodium for 100g of cereal. It’s not bad.
- Weetabix has no processed oils. Most “ultra processed foods” would contain processed vegetable oil, such as soybean oil or corn oil. But Weetabix has none of that junk.
And yeah, there’s nothing else that is particularly bad or “ultra processed” in Weetabix. By itself, it’s not that bad or that great. It’s mostly just whole grain wheat with a little added sugar.
Does nutrition ever seem confusing? It doesn’t have to be. Learn how simple (and delicious) healthy eating can be in the FREE Food for Health Masterclass. This 1-hour presentation makes things clear—finally. Click here to reserve your free spot!
7. Is Weetabix Good For Weight Loss?
Weetabix is a decent food to include in a weight loss diet. It is high in fiber, which helps fill you up. Compared to other cereals, it has less sugar and other processed ingredients, so it has fewer empty calories.
By itself, a few servings of Weetabix will not make or break your weight loss diet. Weight loss depends on your overall diet and lifestyle. However, choosing whole grain foods like Weetabix can help you feel satisfied on fewer calories, making it easier to lose weight.
The details matter, though. Remember from our analysis of sugar content above—some Weetabix flavors are much healthier than others. The Original, Protein, or Oatibix flavors are good choices to help with weight loss.
You can also aid your weight loss journey with your choice of milk. Did you know that unsweetened almond milk is only about 30 calories per cup? That’s only ~25% of the calories of 2% cow’s milk!
In the end, if you’re burning more calories than you’re eating each day/week overall, you should lose weight—whether those calories include some Weetabix or not. But surely, Weetabix can fit right into a smart weight-loss plan.
For more help with weight loss, check out this post with 18 tips for weight loss without counting calories.
- Is Weetabix Good For Losing Belly Fat? Specific foods cannot help you lose fat from a specific area of your body. Fat loss is a total body process, and it depends on your overall diet and lifestyle—not one food you eat. For more information, read this post on how to get six-pack abs.
8. Is It Ok to Eat Weetabix Every Day?
There should be no problem for most people eating Weetabix every day. However, the Weetabix company recommends that adults eat no more than four Weetabix biscuits a day.
Here is a quote from the Weetabix FAQ page on this issue:
“Weetabix is fortified with certain vitamins and minerals and if eaten to excess, then you could be taking in too much of these nutrients. We would recommend that an adult eats no more than four (4) Weetabix biscuits per day.” (source)
Generally speaking, you want to have room in your diet for a variety of healthy foods. If you eat too much Weetabix, you might not have enough room left for vegetables, fruits, nuts, seeds, beans, and other wholesome whole foods.
9. Is Weetabix Vegan?
Weetabix Original and most other Weetabix flavors are generally considered vegan. However, Weetabix Melts are not vegan, as they contain milk ingredients.
The only vegan complaint I could see against Weetabix Original is that the sugar could be processed with bone char. But most vegans are not so picky to boycott foods over that detail.
Most vegans would argue that Weetabix is vegan. In fact, it was a fellow vegan who introduced Weetabix cereal to me. Just avoid the “Weetabix Melts,” which have milk in their chocolate filling.
Two More Recommendations for Your Plant-Based Journey
1. This is the best free video training I’ve found on plant-based nutrition. You’ll learn how to reduce your risk of cancer, heart disease, type 2 diabetes, Alzheimer’s, and obesity—all with plant-based food. Watch the free “Food for Health Masterclass” here.
2. This is the best vegan multivitamin I’ve found in my 14 years of being vegan. It has vitamin B12, vitamin D, omega-3—and nothing else. Translation: It only has the nutrients vegans are actually low in. Read my full review of Future Kind’s multivitamin here (with 10% discount).