Indeed, some diet experts felt that a focus on sugar in cereal misses many of the other factors that contribute to childhood obesity. A statement by the president of General Mills' Big G cereal division, Jeff Harmening, on Wednesday alluded to this point:
"Ready-to-eat cereals, including presweetened cereals, account for only 5 percent of the sugar in children's diets... Still, we know that some consumers would prefer to see cereals that are even lower in sugar, especially children's cereals. General Mills has responded -- and we are committing to reduce sugar levels even more."
And some nutrition experts noted that in the battle against childhood obesity, every little bit counts:
Dr. David Katz, director of the prevention research center at Yale University School of Medicine in New Haven, Conn.:
"There are so many sources of sugar in our kids' diets -- cereals, breads, fast foods, snack foods, soda, dressings, sauces, spreads and desserts -- that yes, that figure is, alas, quite plausible... As for the impact, everything that isn't part of the solution is part of the problem. There is no silver bullet solution -- so improving diet, one food choice at a time, is a valid and important principle."