Monday, October 4, 2010

Food: Fiber One Chewy Bars

We return to food to review a few granola bars, starting with the Fiber One model by General Mills.  The theory behind granola bars is that they are good for you and provide a tasty snack.  Some accomplish this better than others.  As we've seen before, food companies can't really be trusted.

Nutritional InformationFiber One is generally a pretty safe brand to buy food from.  Their Oats & Chocolate granola bar does not contain High Fructose Corn Syrup (although every other flavor does) or Trans Fat, so we are off to a good start.  It does contain High Maltose Corn Syrup, which is another corn based sweetener though.  There hasn't been as much testing on this particular type of artificial sweetener so its long term effects aren't well known.  Even if its not as bad as High Fructose Corn Syrup, its high on the list of ingredients, meaning there is a lot of it in there.  You also have regular sugar(twice) and honey thrown in for good measure.  Looking at the Nutritional Facts table we see that each bar has 10 grams of sugar.  We also see that the bar itself is only 40 grams.  So one tenth of the bar is fat, and one quarter is sugar.  Not a good start.

On the positive side, you do have 9 grams of dietary fiber, which is 35% of your daily value.  There are also 2 grams of protein, which may or may not fill you up for a bit.  I have to say it tastes pretty good.  Semi-Sweet Chocolate Chips and a bunch of sugar makes most people happy.

Other flavors available include:
Oats & Peanut Butter-  There's that High Fructose Corn Syrup!  I didn't find these to taste as good, maybe its because they have one less gram of sugar.  Click here for full nutritional information.
Oats & Caramel-  High Fructose Corn Syrup is back again.  Click here for full nutritional information.
Oats & Strawberry-  High Fructose Corn Syrup once more.  Click here for full nutritional information.
Oats & Apple Streusel-  These actually have 11g of sugar, making them the worst bar in the series, naturally we have High Fructose Corn Syrup as well.  Click here for full nutritional information.
Chocolate Mocha-  If you guessed High Fructose Corn Syrup, you guessed right.  Click here for full nutritional information.

Final Thoughts:
Although it is better for you than a candy bar and provides a good amount of fiber, I am hoping we can find something a bit better for you than a bar that's 25% sugar.  I found the Oats & Chocolate to taste best, it also spares you High Fructose Corn Syrup, although High Maltose Corn Syrup likely isn't any better for you.


  1. Nice math skills Mike! Do you take requests for food choices to nutritionally analyze?

  2. Boo! I guess we're stuck with dry, boring Nature Valley. Oh well, I enjoyed the chocolate while it lasted! Actually, maybe you should look into Nature Valley, too.....

  3. @Nancy, Maybe I should go on are you smarter than a 5th Grader! (I wanted to say wait till next week when I break out the Quadratic Formula, but I couldn't think of a reason I would use it.) I would certainly entertain requests for reviews, just let me know.

    @Melissa, I'm currently working on a Nature Valley review, part of a series on granola bars in general.