Consumerism: Breakfast of Chumps?

In their ads and on their packages, cereal makers often picture pole vaulters or home-run hitters in order to imply that the child who breakfasts on the product will start the day bursting with vitamins and minerals. The implication is unwarranted, an expert testified last week. Robert B. Choate Jr., a former consultant on hunger to the Nixon Administration, told a Senate subcommittee that 40 out of 60 name-brand cereals "fatten but do little to prevent malnutrition."

Choate showed a chart ranking cereals according to the quantities of nine different vitamins, minerals and protein they contain. In a scale of...

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