Brothers John and Will Kellogg—creators of the Kellogg breakfast cereals—formulated their recipe for cornflakes in the Battle Creek Sanitarium, the health resort they ran together in Battle Creek, Michigan. Diet at Battle Creek was bland—mainly sugarless gruels, fibre-rich grains, and low-fat granolas. Like other religious conservatives of the time, the Kelloggs believed that a dull diet would reduce sexual excitability and “self- pollution.” Cornflakes met these standards sufficiently.
The Kelloggs had no interest in selling their cereals—that is, until one of their patients, C. W. Post, stole the recipe for cornflakes from the sanitarium safe, added some sinful sugar to the recipe, renamed it “Post Toasties,” and started Post Cereals. When Will saw the fortune that could be made, he too left the sanitarium for the cereal business. On February 19, 1906, he founded the Battle Creek Toasted Cornflake Company—later known as Kellogg’s—and began purveying cornflakes to the millions.