Label Madness Monday: Granola

Granola. It’s hence wholesome, yous experience healthier simply thinking almost it. Say the discussion out loud together with yous tin laissez passer on the sack practically feel your liver detoxing, or the cancer beingness prevented, or something. It has to live skilful for us; it’s available inwards the volume bins of all the hippie-type nutrient co-ops together with ├╝ber-expensive wellness nutrient stores, together with nosotros all know everything nosotros detect at that spot simply screams “healthy.”


Um, non exactly. Courtesy of modern nutrient processing, most granolas autumn into the same category equally whole grain fiber bars: junk foods marketed equally wellness food. See, they’ve done amongst granola the same affair they’ve done amongst yogurt together with trail mix. They’ve taken foods that—in their natural, unadulterated patch (oats, cultured milk, nuts & dried fruit, respectively)—are fairly skilful choices, together with mucked them upwards amongst hence much sugar, vegetable oil, together with sugar, that they’ve been transformed from wholesome foods to aught but cleverly disguised candy. (Yes, that was 2 sugars, deliberately.)

First up: Bear Naked® Heavenly Chocolate Granola®

As yous tin laissez passer on the sack see, it’s 100% pure together with natural. I’m glad they told us that, otherwise I mightiness live confused past times some of the ingredients that audio a picayune less than natural. Like what? How almost the quaternary ingredient? (When the ingredients inwards the chocolate chips are taken together equally one.) It’s dark-brown rice syrup. Boy, that’s almost equally natural equally it gets, isn’t it? I don’t know almost you, but when I recollect of dark-brown rice, the really firstly affair that comes to take heed is how overwhelmingly sugariness it is. (<-- Sarcasm.) Actually, rice isn’t sweet. Yes, it’s made upwards of lots together with lots of glucose molecules strung together, but hence is the starch inwards white potatoes, together with those don’t strike me equally particularly sweet, either. So correct off the bat here, something’s fishy. I can’t imagine how much processing it takes to plough dark-brown rice into a sugariness syrup, together with frankly, I’m certain I don’t want to know. (My justice is it’s non also many steps removed from how they transform corn into a sugariness syrup amongst extra-concentrated fructose, if ya know what I mean...)

What else is inwards this? Let’s see. 

Various permutations of refined saccharify are listed four times. That’s an awful lot for a production that has thirteen total ingredients. (Again, taking the chocolate chips together with crisp rice equally 2 full ingredients, rather than the total of their parts.) So almost one-third of the full ingredients is sugar! We have: sugar, honey, dark-brown rice syrup, together with evaporated cane juice. (You already know how I experience almost the canola oil, hence I’ll tabular array that number for now.)

And what sort of nutritional breakdown create these 100% pure together with natural ingredients laissez passer on us?

For ¼ cup—just over one ounce—we receive got 130 full calories, 84 of which come upwards from carbohydrate, hence over one-half the total. (21 grams carbs x 4 calories per gram.) Of course, some of those are from the oats together with rice crisps, since at that spot are alone 7g of sugar. But if yous recollect your trunk doesn’t recognize the glucose molecules inwards the oats together with rice equally just what they are—glucose—perhaps yous mightiness live inwards require of a biochemistry refresher. At to the lowest degree at that spot are a few grams of poly peptide hither together with a picayune fighting of fatty to become along amongst the carbs, hence this could live worse. (Fat-free granola…*shudder.*) Plus, let’s non forget that “whole grain crisp rice” looks nothing similar actual, natural rice kernels. They’ve been puffed upwards and/or extruded nether extremely hotness together with line per unit of measurement area to await that way together with larn that crispy texture. This is food processing at its worst finest. This isn’t simply putting rice inwards a pot amongst some H2O together with letting it simmer similar yous could create inwards your abode kitchen. This requires heavy duty industrial machinery, the likes of which yous genuinely don’t desire anywhere close your food.

Still, overall, I’ve seen worse. Far worse. This isn’t the most evil affair yous could consume, but there’s a far healthier way to larn oats into your diet: maybe amongst existent oats (steel cutting are extra yummy), properly soaked/soured overnight, together with cooked equally a nice, warm porridge. And if yous wanted the chocolate, yous could fifty-fifty add together inwards a teaspoon or 2 of unsweetened cocoa pulverization together with maybe a teaspoon of raw beloved or real, genuine maple syrup. (Not the HFCS labeled “table syrup” at the store.)

Before nosotros motion on, let’s complaint that the serving size hither is simply ¼ cup. Influenza A virus subtype H5N1 tad over i lousy ounce. So maybe those 21 grams of quickly-digesting carbohydrates aren’t such a large bargain if yous tin laissez passer on the sack halt at i serving. But if yous tin laissez passer on the sack unopen the pocketbook together with telephone outcry upwards it quits afterwards simply ¼ loving cup of this stuff, hats off to you, because you’ve got to a greater extent than self-control than I do.
Let’s receive got a await at some other multifariousness of Bear Naked® granola. This i is the Original, Peak Protein®

Okay. “Peak Protein.” I’m guessing that agency there’s a lot of poly peptide inwards this. Oops! Looks similar I was wrong. Right hither on the forepart of the package, it tells us that this poly peptide “peak” is half dozen grams per serving. That’s non really much. That’s alone equally much equally is inwards just one egg. (Toggle downwardly to “1 large (50g)” to run across the information for i egg inwards that link.) I’m non maxim that’s a negligible amount, but I don’t recollect it’s something to brag about, either. Now, if this granola had, say, the poly peptide content of 2 or three eggs, hence I mightiness live to a greater extent than impressed. But now? For half dozen grams? Meh. (Also: the half dozen grams of poly peptide inwards i blissful egg would come upwards without the xv grams of carbohydrate ¼ loving cup of this granola packs.)

As yous tin laissez passer on the sack run across from the forepart of the package, this multifariousness is also “100% pure & natural.” At least, they desire us to think so. Let’s run across what’s hence natural almost it:

Hm. That’s interesting. I didn’t know nature packaged cranberries amongst sugar, glycerin, together with sunflower oil. Perhaps it’s been that way since the firstly of fourth dimension together with I somehow missed the memo. (Its possible. After all, I pass every mo of my costless fourth dimension watching cooking shows on Food Network reading nutrition articles inwards peer-reviewed scientific journals.)

And of course, since it’s nearly impossible to receive got a packaged nutrient without some cast of soy inwards it, this picayune pocketbook manages to boast two unlike types! Soy “nuts” together with soy poly peptide isolate. (Note: soy poly peptide isolate is largely a byproduct of the soybean crude oil industry. Remember, soy is a bean. Once they extract all the crude oil from it, they’re left amongst the soybean meal, which is pretty high inwards protein, together with since it takes a lot of soybeans to build gallons of oil, the processors were left amongst literally tons of this stuff. So the manufacturers came upwards amongst the ingenious solution of selling it to feedlot owners equally cattle together with pig feed, but they also marketplace it to health-conscious humans who don’t know almost the dangers of soy, together with happily guzzle downwardly shakes made amongst soy poly peptide pulverization together with gobble downwardly bars made amongst soy poly peptide isolate.

Let’s await at how this protein-packed granola (ahem) stacks upwards when it comes to other nutrients. 

There are half dozen grams of sugar. So, equal amounts of refined saccharify together with protein. If half dozen grams is the threshold, I justice they could simply equally accurately receive got called this “Peak Sugar.” (Not that I recollect half dozen grams of refined saccharify is all that much; I’m simply making the betoken that if this manufacturer thinks half dozen grams of poly peptide qualify equally “peak,” hence the same could live said for the refined saccharify content.) This i has vii grams of fatty – non also shabby! Finally, a picayune fighting of fatty to assist blunt the blood glucose spike from the oats, sweetened cranberries, together with rice crisps. (The fat, of course, comes from canola oil, together with a picayune from the sunflower crude oil together with flax seeds.) Still, THIS IS NOT Influenza A virus subtype H5N1 HEALTH FOOD.

And here’s the crazy thing: deport inwards mind, equally far equally store-bought granolas go, these 2 are genuinely relatively low inwards sugar! The primal discussion hither is relatively. It’s non that these are low hence much equally they’re depression compared to other brands. In fact, the volume bins I mentioned at the firstly of this postal service are filled amongst granolas that come upwards inwards at upwards of xxx grams of saccharide for a mere ¼ loving cup serving. Thanks to sugar, honey, “evaporated cane juice,” dried fruit, chocolate chips, caramel drizzles, together with all kinds of other sugariness stuff, those granolas receive got the humble, nutritious oat together with plough it into a blood refined saccharify bomb waiting to drop. (Never take heed that oats, themselves, are pretty high inwards carbohydrate, but at to the lowest degree oats are real food that come upwards amongst some fiber together with minerals.)

You genuinely could create a lot worse than these. (Trader Joe’s together with Whole Foods simulated M&M, white chocolate chunk, together with peanut butter chip-laden “trail mixes,” I’m lookin’ at YOU.) And simply similar I said last time, when nosotros covered fruit juice smoothies, at that spot are people for whom, at specific times, this sort of quick-digesting hitting of refined saccharify together with grains would live to a greater extent than appropriate than for an overweight, inflamed, sedentary diabetic. Have yous simply gone together with depleted your musculus glycogen courtesy of an intense workout? Are yous lean together with insulin sensitive? Okay, become ahead. Have a serving—or fifty-fifty two. But that’s almost it for whom this granola isn’t a terrible idea.

Make no mistake: this is candy marketed together with masquerading equally wellness food. You could create worse, but yous could create a whole lot better.

P.S. Sorry I didn’t larn the cost information on these. Guess I was inwards a hurry at the store. Based on what they accuse for similar sugar-coated grains doused inwards vegetable oil, nosotros tin laissez passer on the sack justice these granolas are some a zillion dollars a pound.

Remember: Amy Berger, M.S., NTP, is non a doctor together with , LLC, is non a medical practice. The information contained on this site is non intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or preclude whatsoever medical condition.

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Label Madness Monday: Granola
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