by Ewa Nowogorski
In Japan, they say corn flakes. In the US, we say cereal. We’re talking about the same thing, but cereal as a word does not really exist in the mainstream Japanese language.
In Japan, one shocking thing you will discover when you go to a grocery store or supermarket is that there is no cereal isle. You will probably find corn flakes and some seriously overpriced granola, and sometimes even small packages of oatmeal (also overpriced), but you will rarely find other kinds of cereal. The ones hat do exist are just variations of corn flakes. In America, corn flakes are considered to be the most basic of breakfast cereals, and there are hundreds of other cereals to choose from.
The way cornflakes are eaten is different between the 2 countries too. In America, cereals such as cornflakes are eaten in the morning for breakfast with milk. In Japan, cornflakes are used as a dessert topping, mainly with ice cream or other fruits, or sometimes as a snack to be eaten as is. It’s not typically eaten with a spoon with milk like a bowl of soup. In that case, granola is used. Granola is considered a healthy breakfast food because it has fruits, protein, and a lot of fiber and fortified nutrients.
In America, there are healthy cereals, but most cereals which are targetted towards children are very sugary and filled with color additives, making them quite unhealthy. Still, I can remember the days when I looked forward to my fruit loops and lucky charms for breakfast.