Thursday, April 16, 2015

FDA Says Popular Meal Replacement Bar Is NOT Healthy

At least four KIND bars are being called out by the FDA for mislabeling issues.

KIND fruit and grain bars must stop calling at least four of its snacks "healthy," the Food and Drug Administration told the company in a recent warning letter made public this week.

Federal Standards state that the term “healthy” means that the product has one gram or less of saturated fat, and that no more than 15 percent of the calories are from saturated fat. The FDA says at leaf four KIND bars contain anywhere from 2.5 to 3.5g of saturated fat per 40g.

Those bars are: KIND Fruit & Nut Almond & Apricot, KIND Fruit & Nut Almond & Coconut, KIND Plus Peanut Butter Dark Chocolate + Protein, and KIND Plus Dark Chocolate Cherry Cashew + Antioxidants -- contain anywhere from 2.5 to 3.5g of saturated fat per 40g, according the the FDA.

The FDA also called out the popular meal replacement bar company for other mislabeling issues, including claims about antioxidants, fiber, the lack of trans fat, and the use of the “+” sign on its packaging. The FDA says that KIND’s Peanut Butter Dark Chocolate + Protein and Dark Chocolate Cherry Cashew + Antioxidants is a violation because “+” means that the food contains at least 10 percent more of the daily recommended intake for vitamins and minerals, or that the food is fortified with vitamins and nutrients.

In response, the company said that nuts, high in fat, made it the target of the FDA

"Nuts, key ingredients in many of our snacks and one of the things that make fans love our bars, contain nutritious fats that exceed the amount allowed under the FDA's standard," said KIND spokesman Joe Cohen. "There is an overwhelming body of scientific evidence supporting that nuts are wholesome and nutritious."

Food For Thought:  Okay, so this is a TRICKY one. It's also kinda scary when it comes to the other label claims being off. As for the saturated fat part ... it seems the FDA doesn't take into consideration what KIND of fat is causing the food to exceed the amount allowed by the FDA's standards and there IS a difference in eating nuts and cheese. But this is one reason I don't eat bars unless I HAVE TO. Whole foods are always better AND more filling! If I'm going to eat nuts and fruit .. I'd much rather have my daily breakfast with real melted peanut butter and fruit than the kind mixed into these bars filled with sugary dried fruit. I'm not saying they are off limits. I've had them before (it's been years) and would rather grab one of these than most bars -- however they are super low in protein overall. Very interesting for sure. But this has me thinking about labels and "net carbs". While it's not been THAT publicized ... QUEST bars have been in the spotlight. There is a class action lawsuit out there on their claims of "net carbs" - which are SO tricky. I really like this article that talks about "Net Carbs" that some of you may want to read if you are only tracking your "net" and not seeing the results you think you should see. If you have a nutritionist/coach giving you your plan -- they likely already take all this into consideration for you when picking your foods. But if you are figuring out your own macros and plugging them in and NOT counting carbs that aren't "net" ... I suggest you read that guys article. When I am NOT on my coaches plan, I personally track ALL carbs and am just AWARE of where they come from. For example, if I allow myself 300 carbs a day, I don't let all 300 of those come from even my healthy complex carbs (oats, sweet/red potatoes, etc.) I know that I need a serving or two of green veggie at at least 4 of my meals. Obviously carbs from my asparagus will treat my body a little different than carbs from my red potatoes because even though certain carbs (such as the ones in Quest) MAY not spike your blood sugar as much since they aren't NET carbs ... they still have CALORIES :) There are exceptions ... if the fiber you are eating is insoluble for example. Because it goes right through you... but that just gets too "much" and will cause most peopler to throw their hands up and say forget it. Confusing ... I know. I recommend reading that article if you are confused about if you should count non "net" carbs in your count. But this guys bottom line is that while there are carbs that are better for you and digested differently ...YES you should track them all and include them all in your daily "carb allowance"

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