After being diagnosed with a fatty liver, you are always wondering if you are allowed to eat one type of food or another. I am here to help answer these questions and today we’re going to learn whether you should eat cereal with fatty liver or not.
So, are we allowed to have cereals for breakfast if we have a fatty liver?
As it is always the case with NAFLD-related foods, the answer is not a simple “yes” or “no”.
Some cereals are better than others when it comes to having them if you have a fatty liver disease. As long as you eat the right ones – like oatmeal – without added sugars, things should be fine.
But most store-brought cereals should be avoided because they are loaded with sugars and sometimes additional fats, preservatives and other chemicals that are bad for your liver.
The good news remains that you can have cereals for breakfast if you are diagnosed with a fatty liver. You can have them for lunch or dinner too if that’s your thing – just make sure that you eat the right ones!
In today’s article, we will learn what cereal can be eaten if you have a fatty liver, but also what kind of cereal not to eat with NAFLD.
What cereal is good for fatty liver?
Before answering this, remember one important fact: all cereals are high in carbs and we should keep carbs under control when diagnosed with a fatty liver disease.
However, not all carbs are bad and our body does need them for energy. The better carbs we can have are those absorbed slower into our bloodstream, such as the carbs from whole wheats.
In other words, carbs from fruits and even some cereals are not bad for our livers – on the contrary, they have added benefits thanks to the other minerals, vitamins and nutrients. You can find out more about good carbs and bad carbs on Healthline.
But this still doesn’t mean that you should eat tons of these! Balance is the key when dealing with a fatty liver, so make sure you mix and match and keep all numbers under control!
And, unlike many other fruits, cereal – even the healthier ones that I am about to recommend – can be completely ignored. It’s better to stay away from them if you have a fatty liver and try to keep carbs to a minimum.
But in case you don’t want to and really enjoy eating them, some options are much better than others.
Best cereal for fatty liver
With these in mind, here’s what cereal is best for fatty liver:
These are the best choice, in my opinion, mainly because they have a lower carb value than most.
So Oatmeal (or porridge) is a great choice when it comes to preparing a healthy, cereal-based breakfast.
There are some things to consider when cooking them, though. Always go for milled or steel-cut oats and not the instant types, as the latter usually have extra flavors and sugar added.
When cooking them, try to do so as healthy as possible: boil them in water instead of milk (or add part milk, part water), don’t add any sugar (or just a bit of honey/stevia or other good sugar alternatives for fatty liver) and instead flavor them with fresh or frozen fruits (make sure that there is no added sugar in your fruits either – most dried ones have tons of sugar!)
In other words, keep it as natural as possible and it will be healthy. This was my go-to cereal breakfast when I was diagnosed and it worked pretty well for me, having reversed my condition.
These are mainly made of oats, but have various other fruits and seeds added to the mix.
They usually have a bit of other cereal types as well and some might even have added sugar. But overall, they are also heartier because of the nuts and seeds, so they keep you full for longer.
Make sure to read the ingredients list before purchasing and only go for Museli without any added sugars!
These are a bit more difficult to find, but not impossible. If you’re having trouble finding them, I recommend the ones below (affiliate links):
3. Sugar free cereal
You can even have more traditional cereals (like cornflakes) that have no added sugar or other chemicals. (Speaking of cornflakes, make sure to check out my previous article about cornbread without cornmeal).
Make sure that whatever you pick is made of whole wheat – white wheat has carbs that are absorbed much faster and are worse for your health.
Even with non-sweetened whole wheat cereal, they still pack a punch that’s high in carbs, so they’re not the best option on our list – but you can do a lot worse than going for sugar-free breakfast cereals.
Don’t eat these sugar free cornflakes or other type cereal daily though. Instead, have them as a treat every now and then and in very small quantities. Consider them a treat and not a meal.
What cereals NOT to eat if you have a fatty liver?
Most likely, the breakfast cereal that you used to eat can no longer be had. The truth is that most of the cereals that we can find in stores should have a big “NO” stamped on them. And that goes even for healthy individuals, as we can easily find out.
Most breakfast cereals out there, no matter if we’re talking about corn flakes or all sort of other grains, have a lot of added sugar. Even those like Honey Nut Cheerios which many believe to be healthy should actually be avoided.
In order to make them tasty and appealing, they also add various flavors, preservatives, chemicals and sometimes even hydrogenated fat, which are all bad for us.
This turns an otherwise healthy-ish meal into a really poor choice. And the problem is that it’s getting harder and harder to find some good, healthy choices on the store shelves.
As some are saying, they’re nothing but junk food with added vitamins and minerals. And even those don’t make them acceptable.
So when you are shopping for your breakfast cereal, always check out the list of ingredients.
If it has any sort of preservatives, synthetic aromas, hydrogenated fats or any type of sugar (which can have various names, as listed here) – then don’t get them.
Stay away from them as they are very bad even for healthy people, but especially for those with a fatty liver.
Is Weetabix Good for Fatty Liver Disease?
Since we’re talking about cereal, let’s discuss Weetabix – which is something I am always asked about. After all, they are marketed as a healthy, minimally processed food.
You should not eat Weetabix biscuits if you have a fatty liver disease, because they have added sugar, which is something we should avoid.
At the same time, the amount of added sugar is extremely low compared to most other biscuits or even breakfast cereal out there. They only have 2 grams of added sugar per serving (which is 3 biscuits) or a bit over 4 grams per 100 grams of biscuits.
For comparison, most other similar products (including breakfast cereal) have at least 10 grams of added sugar per 100 grams.
So if you really have no other option and can’t stay away from them, Weetabix biscuits are better than regular biscuits or most breakfast cereal. But do have in mind that they still have added sugar, so they’re not 100% recommended.
Although early on with my fatty liver diet I ate no cereals at all, after a couple of months I decided that a bit won’t hurt.
I eat mostly oats that I prepare at home with frozen berries and sometimes a bit of banana and it’s absolutely great.
I also have sugar free cornflakes every now and then as I love the crunchiness… but not too often (maybe once or twice per month). It has worked well for me as I did manage to reverse my fatty liver in the mean time.
I believe that if you stay away from the really bad ones – those with added sugars and other things, you are safe to eat cereal for breakfast every now and then. Of course, as I kept saying – make sure that you keep portions under control!
Pin this for later:
I know that finding what to eat for breakfast is a real challenge when you start dieting to reverse your fatty liver. Therefore, I have a list of breakfast ideas to help you get started!
I have also created an extremely useful article – a monthly shopping list that is fatty liver friendly. This way, you know that you’re buying the right stuff for your diet!
If you want to find out more about foods that you can or are not allowed to eat after being diagnosed with NAFLD, either use the search bar on the website or check out these popular selections: eating bread, drinking wine or eating bananas if you have a fatty liver.
Stay healthy and stick to your diet. You can reverse this!
I was diagnosed with a fatty liver back in 2014 and managed to reverse it by mid 2015. Since then, I’ve been studying NAFLD and I have decided to share everything I have learned over the years to help you reverse your condition.
I am also the admin of the Fatty Liver Support Group on Facebook and the Fatty Liver Subreddit.