Is Muesli good for weight loss?

I'm sure we've had a bowl of muesli at some stage, the crunch of wheat flakes, oats, nuts and seeds combined with the natural sweetness of dried fruits, mixed with a drop of milk.

But have you ever wondered just how healthy this breakfast bowl is, and whether you could actually incorporate muesli as part of a dieting process? Many of you may remember such diets as the Special K diet a few years, back and may have thought of swapping out the Special K for something a little more exciting.

Is Muesli healthy?

By and large the ingredients in many muesli blends whether the regular blend or an alpine variety (with added dairy powder) are actually good wholesome ingredients that individually are considered healthy breakfast items and may contribute to a persons weight loss.

Muesli is actually low levels of saturated fat, unless you've opted for a coconut muesli. But in general, a regular serving of muesli will only contain around 0.5 g of saturated fat per 40g.

Muesli contains fruit and nuts which is inherently high in fibre and great for our digestive system. Mixes that include raw oats also benefit from having a type of fibre called beta glucan which made be beneficial to heart health.

Some varieties found in supermarkets include additional sugar, we would definitely recommend avoiding these to remove unnecessary and unwanted extra calories.

Opt for the no added sugar types. Sweetness for a lot of people (myself included) stimulates appetite and cravings. If you need some extra sweetness you could add some fresh fruits and berries or alternatively a sugar free sweetener or syrup.

Whilst a muesli does include a small amount of quite calorific ingredients such as nuts and dried fruits, as long as you stick the actual serving size of 40 g, you should find it easy to include a bowl in your daily diet and if you maintain a calorie deficit you will lose weight.

But any way you look at it, regular no added sugar mueslis are still more healthy than a granola or frosted breakfast cereal. A muesli you blend yourself from your own ingredients is better still.

Is Muesli gluten free?

Unfortunately not as most blends of this morning meal will include barley and wheat. If you are gluten intolerant I would recommend using a protein porridge as an alternative.

  • Make your own gluten free muesli blend by replacing barley and wheat with oats, oat bran, buckwheat, amaranth or quinoa which are all gluten free whole grains, and would make for an extremely filling breakfast.

  • Over this you could slice some berries such as blueberries, strawberries or raspberries. Maybe some sliced fresh fruits, these would all be healthier than dried fruits.

Nutriton At A Glance

Per 50 gram Scoop

  • Energy  197 kcal / 828 kj 

  • Fat  6.75 g

  • Saturates  1.7 g

  • Carbohydrates. 18.5 g

  • Sugar  1.3 g

  • Fibre  5.75 g

  • Protein  15.5 g

Which is better for weight loss muesli or oats?

Oats hands down. Sorry, we do love muesli but oats as a porridge, protein porridge or overnight oats are definitely far better for weight loss.

Although porridge oats do have a few more calories than a muesli, they are a healthier option and better for overall health.

There is less sugar, so less spikes in insulin. Oats are more dense, they gel more in our stomach thus more filling than supermarket mueslis; just not quite as tasty unless you pack in additional syrup into your oatmeal.

Plus there is way more heart healthy fibre in oats which is great for lowering LDL cholesterol levels.

Photo of a mason jar filled with overnight muesli

How do you use muesli for weight loss?

It is important to remember no matter what passes your lips, be it cereal, a snack, soft drink or a latte they all need to fit within your daily energy balance and maintain a calorie deficit to lose weight.

You can easily swap out more calorific meals for a lower calorie bowl of muesli. For example you can replace a bacon and egg sandwich for a serving of cereal, thus reducing your calories for that meal.

The difficulty is actually eating the recommended serving size of 40g, do you know many people who actually weigh out their cereals? Not many, most freely pour the dry grains into a bowl and stir in milk or dairy alternatives.

This is the most common mistake when trying to use a cereal to lose weight, that plus adding additional calories from more dried fruit, nuts, seeds and sugars. Avoid all of these mistakes if you want to accurately track your energy intake.

Photo of a mason jar filled with overnight muesli

What is the best time to eat muesli for weight loss?

You can eat muesli at any time of the day and still use this cereal blend for losing weight. If you do as suggested above and replace meals with more energy calories for a lower kcal bowl of muesli and you're on the right track.

If your snacks are 250 - 300 kcal each and you replace them for 200 kcal serving of muesli, you are working you way toward a daily calorie deficit.

Is Growli a Muesli?

Growli is like a freaky supercharged hybrid of a unsweetened muesli and oatmeal full of healthful ingredients.

It has the dairy protein (although higher quality) of an Alpine muesli with organic whole grains like barley, oats and wheat.

  • Our organic grains are all complex carbs without extra sucrose, offering a much improved nutritional profile over highly processed sugary cereals.

  • Growli also contains a lot of organic whole grain seeds to provide essential Omega fats; the healthy fats. Growli has a high amount of oats for adding healthful beta glucan fibre to your diet.

  • Growli is a complete nutrition mea in that it includes all your essential vitamins and minerals.

Does Muesli stop you from feeling hungry?

It largely depends on the individual, the size of their appetite and how much they usually eat at each serving. A regular sized 40g serving is not actually very big, this is why many people simply free pour the cereal into their bowl.

Also compare the size and mass of the meal you are replacing. If you aiming to replace a full English breakfast, running at around 1000+ kcal with a 200 kcal bowl of cereal, you may feel a little less than satisfied.

The two things that do count in a muesli favour is the high fibre content and protein; both aid the feeling of satiety. Those who are prone to eating muesli regularly opposed to frosted cereals or high fat cooked breakfasts would definitely be the ones enjoying a more healthy breakfast.

An Alpine style muesli contains skimmed milk powder and in my experience are a little more filling, admittedly this dairy powder includes lactose but also a little more protein.

You could add a half scoop of whey protein to your bowl to make the meal more filling or if you are wanting to build lean mass.

frequently asked questions graphic


Q. Is it OK to eat muesli at night?

A. Yes, as long as the serving fits into calorie deficit.

Q. How many calories in supermarket Muesli?

A. 168 kcal of dry product.

Q. How does muesli make you gain weight?

A. If you eat in a calorie surplus, you will gain weight.

Q. Is it OK to eat muesli everyday?

A. Use muesli to replace less healthy, higher calorie meals.

Q. Which brand muesli is best for weight loss?

A. Growli Muesli.

Q. What are the health benefits of muesli?

A. Muesli is high in fibre from wholegrain cereals.

frequently asked questions graphic

How Is Growli Better Than Muesli?

While I initially got the idea of Growli from my research into the original Bircher muesli and how it was used to treat patients in the past.

It was always my aim to improve upon the original formula where at all possible and make this humble bowl of cereal, a real nutritionally complete meal suitable for use through the day.

By incorporating organic cereal whole grains and seeds for a higher omega 3 fatty acids content, with a much higher quality source of protein, in the form of our bespoke blend of whey protein and micellar casein, a complete vitamin and mineral complex, plus a range of digestive enzymes.

I'd say we more than aced that goal; it's packed with nutrients and ready to eat within seconds.

Our customers love Growli, whether it be for their weight loss journey, to improve they physical performance or simply being content knowing they are eating a meal that contributes towards an optimally balanced diet and a healthy body.

What ingredients are used in supermarket Muesli?

These are the ingredients used in the of most popular Alpine style brands:

  • Wholegrain Wheat (39%), Wholegrain Rolled Oats (37%), Raisins (12%), Sugar, Skimmed Milk Powder, Milk Whey Powder, Roasted Sliced Nuts (2.0%) (Hazelnuts, Almonds), Salt

  • As you can see this is predominantly a carbohydrate based meal, with sugars (9.5 g per 40g serving) derived from the dried raisin, sugar and skimmed dairy. This is the equivalent of 2.5 teaspoons per serving. These are values for dry product you can add an extra 5g of sugar per 100ml of semi skimmed milk.

Here is a alternative blend which removes the sugars and skimmed dairy powder:

  • Wholegrain Oat Flakes, Wholegrain Wheat Flake, Dried Fruit (20%) [Raisins, Sultanas, Chopped Dates (4%)], Barley Flakes, Wholegrain Toasted Wheat Flake, Sunflower Seeds (4.5%), Nuts (2%) [Chopped Brazil Nuts (1%), Roasted Whole Hazelnuts]

  • This has much less sugar available (6.6g per 45g serving) again the sugar is from the dried raisins, sultanas and dates. An equivalent of 1.5 teaspoons per serving. These are values for dry product you can add an extra 5g of sugar per 100ml of semi skimmed milk.

  • Again most muesli eaters do not weigh their cereal and it would be all too easy for someone to consume at least double these amounts. A 100g gram serving of the first formula would yield 20 g of sugar (5 teaspoons) plus 12.5 g of sugar (3 teaspoons) from approximately 250ml of low fat milk.

 The take home points from this is to either weigh cereal out, avoid excess calories spikes in your blood sugar levels. If you struggle with controlling you appetite or a weight loss diet, use a milk alternative like almond milk to reduce the over lactose burden.

For comparison here are the ingredients in Growli

  • Oats, protein blend (micellar casein, whey protein), flax seeds, wheat flakes, barley flakes, sunflower seeds, chia seeds, coconut chips, inulin, hemp seeds, goji berries powder, Himalayan iodised pink salt.

  • Growli is much lower in sugar than a muesli available from your local supermarket, with just 1.35g in a 50 g serving.

Is Muesli Vegan?

Yes and no. A cereal blend without dairy protein, skimmed dairy powder or whey powder will be vegan, consisting of just cereal grains, dried fruits and nuts.

Alpine style mueslis will not as they contain dairy powders.

Build your own Muesli recipe

Here's a quick little DIY idea for your own breakfast muesli recipe. Simply add the best ingredients you can source to obtains more nutrients. 

Be mindful of your serving size though, as it maybe a little more-ish.

You could try a serving by adding milk and yoghurt and leave overnight in the refrigerator, or simply mix with low fat milk and tuck in, both are really easy ways of eating muesli.

I've also found that a quick squirt of lemon juice upon serving makes for a lovely tart twist.

Please try where possible to avoid the extra sugar, if you are like me it will be far too much to resist and soon bowl after bowl will be eaten; ouch our poor digestive tract.

Place into a bowl, using proportions that take your fancy and have fun creating your unique blend of grains.

  • Jumbo porridge oats

  • Flaked wheat or wheat germ

  • Barley flakes

  • Hazelnuts, sliced or lightly crushed

  • Almond flakes

  • Dried sultanas

  • Dried cranberries

Nutrition facts

Growli 50g
(Dry powder)

  • Kcal: 197

  • KJ: 824

  • Fat: 6.75g

  • Saturates: 1.7g

  • Carbohydrates: 18.5g

  • Sugars: 1.35g

  • Protein: 15.5g

  • Fibre: 5.75g

  • Salt: 0.3g

Alpine Muesli 45g
(Dry powder)

  • Kcal: 168

  • KJ: 712

  • Fat: 2.5g

  • Saturates: 0.4g

  • Carbohydrates: 30g

  • Sugars: 9.5g

  • Protein: 5g

  • Fibre: 3.5g

  • Salt: 0.15g

Porridge 40g
(Dry powder)

  • Kcal: 145

  • KJ: 612

  • Fat: 2.8g

  • Saturates: 0.4g

  • Carbohydrates: 24.2g

  • Sugars: 0.5g

  • Protein: 4.1g

  • Fibre: 3.3g

  • Salt: 0.01g

Final thoughts

Whilst we all love a good muesli, especially the ones we create ourselves from organic grains, nuts and fruit, it is really easy to get carried away and eat far more than we should.

So when making muesli ourselves with a target to lose weight, we need to weigh out our food and remain in a calorie deficit to achieve our goals; we cannot simply wing it.

Alternatively you can take the guess work out and eat Growli. We've sourced the finest ingredients, packed in essential nutrients with an optimal nutritional value and at fewer calories than many competing products.

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