Are Lucky Charms Vegan?
We want to start this story with one common misconception – is vegan healthy at the same?
No, it is not, and many people confuse these two, because vegans do not eat meat that is considered to be unhealthy, for example, and they eat a lot of fruit and vegetables, so they should be healthy. It is not as simple as it seems.
Healthy and vegan … It’s not the same, but they can certainly go together.
In this sense, let us remind ourselves one time – a vegan diet and lifestyle do not support the exploitation of animals, in any shape or form, even indirectly. This includes not eating the meat of warm-blooded and feathered animals, fish, seafood, milk and dairy products, honey, as well as beetle remains.
Fur and leather are also not used and are out of the question; products must not be tested on animals. This is something that is referred to everything that people use in their households; it refers to cosmetics, home chemistry.
In cases, when people have some kind of therapy to go through or must eat a certain product by the reconnection of their doctor, then it is another story, and it is an individual choice.
When it comes to snacking in a vegan diet, the best thing you can do is to provide yourself some fresh fruit, and it makes a whole sense – fresh, seasonal organic fruit is the best snack as well as the most delicious dessert.
Buy fruit from your area more often than exotic ones that have traveled for weeks and months to reach your supermarket. With that in mind, occasionally consume some banana, and the exotic fruit in the summer will bring variety to your eating habits.
Now, you can mix some fruits for breakfast, and it does not have to be just a part of your snacking routine, it can be an amazing addition to your bowl of cereals – now what that Cereal maybe if you are a fan of store-bought cereals?
What is that Cereal that is vegan and delicious (most of them are), and one comes on our minds – Lucky Charms?
The Cereal of your childhood that you still love
When this Cereal first came into the market, it did not have as much sugar as it does now, but the sales rise to the sky when they become sweeter.
Lucky the Leprechaun is the brand’s mascot, that had changed its appearance, but it is recognizable.
During years, the manufacturer released so many special editions of these sugary frosted cereals.
In 2005 the Chocolate Lucky Charms hit the market. The next year Berry Lucky Charms came to the shelves in the supermarkets.
Now, all of this just shows how loved this Cereal is since there is a lot of sugar involved. It is not healthy (more about this later), but is it vegan?
Take a look at the ingredients list.
First of all, we must admit that we are aware that when you turn the product around and read the composition, you have no idea if it is vegan or not.
Every vegan beginner goes through this ordeal, and it is ok, it is just the part of the process that is normal. In time you will get used to it and will learn what to buy and what to avoid.
Here we want to take a deep look at the ingredients list – Lucky Charms are made out primarily Whole Grain Oats, then Sugar, Corn Starch, Trisodium Phosphate, Vitamin E, Salt, Corn Syrup, Natural and Artificial Flavor, Color Added, Oat Flour.
When you look at the ingredient list like this, you would not see anything that could raise the alarm for you and your vegan life choice. There is no dairy, no eggs, nothing that would make you think that you cannot eat them. But…
Of course, like in every other store-bought product, it is hard to look further, and it is always that one element that makes a problem. Here it is one that makes Lucky Charms what they are.
But the main ingredient here, and as it will turn out to be the most problematic are Marshmallows – they are made out of modified corn starch, sugar, corn syrup, calcium carbonate, dextrose, and Gelatin. There can be found some artificial flavor and color.
So, the problem is not that artificial colors and flavors that are most likely vegan, but the marshmallow, or its main ingredient -gelatin that is a definitive no-no for vegans.
Are Lucky Charms Vegan?
As you can see, not only does Lucky Charms have Gelatin, and this is not something that can be vegan, because it comes from an animal source.
Also, as many vegans point out, there are some other ingredients that are not vegan, for example, in Chocolate Lucky Charms.
But, we need to say one more thing here – the non-vegan part is related to the marshmallow part in this Cereal, not the Cereal themselves.
Gelatin is a white or yellowish product obtained by cooking the skin, bones, and connective tissue of domestic animals such as pigs or horses. In the food industry, it is most commonly found in rubber candy, very (but not very) rarely in jelly candy.
It can be found in fruit ice creams, chocolate candies of various kinds, but also in cereals, in this way, like in marshmallow that is a mandatory part of Lucky Charms.
It is also used in medicine (more precisely in capsules – the capsule is made of Gelatin).
One more addition – we did not find that Lucky Charms have in Vitamin D that is by some vegans a problematic part in many products, and another issue is the presence of sugar that is also an issue for some vegans, because of the bone char.
The main issue is still the presence of Gelatin, which is an undoubted problem for vegans because it comes from an animal source.
Are Lucky Charms Healthy?
We could see that just as the majority of cereals, this type also has some vitamins and minerals, like Vitamin C, B, B2, B6, B1, A, B12, along with the Zinc and Iron.
It is not a bad thing when something has vitamins, but the ones that are produced chemically, and the ones that we naturally get from some fruit or vegetable or something else. There cannot be any misconception about it.
Now, as far as the cereals for breakfast go, the sugary kind is never a good idea.
Cereals (the right kind, prepared in the right way, with the right toppings, and it certainly is not sugar) are recommended for breakfast because they give our body enough energy to start the day in the best way possible, to be ready to fulfill all business and private obligations.
It is a very important meal because it is the first after the most extended break without the food we make since we sleep six, seven, and more hours. That’s why it’s essential not to delay it, to be in the first hour after waking up, and to be energetic.
This is especially true for people who struggle with diabetes – then need to regulate their blood sugar, and whether they control energy intake at every meal throughout the day. There is no obstacle for people who have diabetes to eat this type of Cereal, of course, not to eat half a box, but to be in moderation, because moderation is the first principle of a healthy and proper diet.
In a general way, every diet and vegan included must always follow the principle is diversity, and whole-grain cereal products are an integral part of a diverse menu.
We must say just a few more words about the Gelatin, to show you that that healthy and vegan are not the same?
For example, the Gelatin that is not vegan has its medicinal properties were not known for several decades, and it is now clearer what it can be used for and how it can be used for health and appearance.
Gelatin is useful for preventing bowel damage and strengthening the digestive tract walls, thus preventing “leaky gut” syndrome.
More muscular walls of the digestive tract also mean preventing food particles and bacteria from entering the bloodstream, causing inflammation. Gelatin also collects water and liquids, preventing bloating and constipation.
Collagen and Gelatin have become known for alleviating the symptoms of osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis. Such states occur most commonly in the elderly and are considered to be a major cause of frequent joint pain. As people get older, pain, stiffness, and limited joint mobility are the main problems with collapsing collagen.
Therefore, gelatin and collagen help reduce pain and prevent the spread of the disease.
As you could see, vegan does not mean that it is healthy and vice versa – but nature and modern technology provide us with a fantastic amount of substitutes for everything that you may lack in your current diet.
As you could see, your favorite childhood cereals are not vegan because of the marshmallow what it its main ingredient – it is made out of Gelatin that comes from an animal source, or bones, ligaments, etc.
It does not have any taste or smell, and it is a gel-like texture, and it is healthy in some regards, but vegans cannot it.
On the market, of course, there is a lot to choose from, especially in the segment box cereals.
It is recommended that those who like this type of Cereal can enjoy Nature’s Path Heritage Flakes – it is healthier options for sure, and you can put on top some fruits, and you are good to go.
If you do not want to buy at all, you can make your own, and the main thing is to avoid sugar if you make it.
For example – oats are especially rich in soluble and insoluble fiber, lipids, proteins, vitamins, and minerals and are a unique source of polyphenols. It is a powerful antioxidant that has anti-inflammatory properties.
Some fresh fruit on the top and you have made yourself a perfect breakfast. For those who still adore lucky charms – avoid the marshmallow!