Published on March 17th, 20134
Breakfast of Sex Champions?
There’s a new cereal on the market that is said to “fuel your fire,” bring out your inner “tiger” and even “fill a hole in the market.”
It debuted in Canada last month, is called SexCereal, and hopes “to penetrate the performance-enhancing cereal industry.” Its marketing tools even include the image of a scantily clad snake charmer coaxing a snake out of a basket. I am not making this up.
SexCereal is probably the most expensive granola ever. Its primary ingredient is oats — undoubtedly to help consumers sow their wild oats — but it’s also, ahhh, studded with a variety of seeds, nuts and herbs alleged to support hormone production and balance.
In the version marketed to men — Shall we call it Prix? — the ingredients include rolled oats, wheat germ, water, oat bran, chia seeds, black sesame seeds, pumpkin seeds, blueberries (sweetened with apple juice), cacao beans, goji berries, bee pollen, maca powder, camu camu, and coconut sugar.
Because Trix is already a brand for fruit-flavored, frosted corn puffs produced by General Mills, let’s call the women’s version of SexCereal Triks! Triks offers up rolled oats, oat bran, sunflower seeds, water, flax seeds, chia seeds, soy protein, cranberries (sweetened with apple juice) goji berries, cacao bean, almonds, ginger ground, maca powder and coconut sugar.
Yup, soy protein is in the mix, though only for women. Apparently, the designers of SexCereal decided women would appreciate the supposed health benefits of soy but male customers might not perceive it as sufficiently manly. Tofu, after all, might seem effeminate to the kind of men who say “Real men don’t eat quiche.” In fact, if SexCereal’s marketing team recognized that, their perception was right on the money. In Asia, soy goes on the menu at monasteries to help the monks maintain their vows of celibacy. At home, wives serve up extra helpings of soy, as needed to punish unfaithful husbands. SexCereal could work for that purpose too, and could be renamed Cheaties! Of course, soy’s not good for women either, given that phytoestrogens disrupt the production and utilization of thyroid, reproductive and mood hormones, leading to loss of libido.
What else might be wrong with this cereal? Let us count the ways. For starters, nuts, seeds and oats are rich in phytate, an antinutrient that blocks mineral absorption. So much for getting the benefits of the zinc in those libido-enhancing pumpkin seeds! (Unless, of course, the company properly soaked those nuts and seeds first — not likely given how that would shrink SexCereal’s shelf life.) Other potential problems — depending, of course, on the source of the ingredients and the manufacturing methods used — would include chemically pasteurized almonds, rancid wheat germ, gas-producing indigestible bran and fiber, and the carcinogenic processing residues that appear even in organic processed foods.
As for bee pollen, yes, there’s plenty of buzz about long-lived and libidinous bee keepers, but pollen can can also cause allergic and anaphylactic reactions. It’s also guaranteed to offend vegans, who will surely get hot and bothered by the bee pollen lurking in the “his” version. As for maca, goji berries, camu camu or any of the other exotic ingredients, the evidence on their being aphrodisiacs is mixed at best.
If the ingredient list makes the SexCereal kibble seem a bit “dry,” the instructions recommend adding milk, just like any other cereal. The first choice is to soy’l it with soy milk, but the instructions also allow rice, hemp, almond or even cow’s milk. Consumers can even add a few spoonfuls of Prix or Triks to their favorite yogurt or oatmeal.
What’s really funny is the idea of pushing any breakfast cereal as an aphrodisiac. Corn flakes and other breakfast cereals were invented in the nineteenth century to build moral fiber, squelch lust and save souls. Sylvester Graham (1794-1851) attained fame and fortune on the lecture circuit, preaching against meat and other foods that promoted carnal knowledge. Sex to his way of thinking should be had once per year max and then only for the purpose of reproduction. To that end, he invented the Graham cracker, then a miserable, hard-to-chew item intended to kill the joys of food as well as sex. Next up on the bully pulpit was Dr. John Harvey Kellogg (1852-1943), a health nut and lifelong celibate who preached against sex even in marriage. Indeed he became flushed with pride at the very thought of his fiber-rich cereals combatting the twin evils of constipation and sexuality.
Today no one advertises cereals and crackers as aids to celibacy though considerable evidence suggests they can contribute to loss of libido as well as other signs of poor health. Risk factors in commercial cereals include GMO corn, soy and other grains; excessive sugars, especially high fructose corn syrup (HFCS) ; rancid fats and oils; extrusion techniques that destroy protein quality and leave carcinogenic residues; and a host of additives, including cheap, synthetic vitamins intended to prop up food products that would otherwise be less nutritious than the cardboard boxes they are sold in.
Is SexCereal better? To the extent that it’s free of GMO ingredients, trans fats, HFCS, gluten, artificial colorings and flavorings, yes. As a product that will light a fire in your loins? Not likely. “Fill a hole in the market”? Possibly. Burn a hole in your pocketbook? For sure.
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©copyright 2013 Kaayla T. Daniel, PhD
For more information about this new product and plenty of the company’s pictures too, visit: http://www.sexcereal.com