Tuesday, May 05, 2009

Healthy Life Bread: All Natural?

I just watched a commercial for Healthy Life Bread that told me that not all whole wheat breads are the same and their product is all natural so I should buy their bread if I want to be healthy.

These days, skeptic that I am, when I see or hear the word "natural" in conjunction with advertising, all sorts of red flags pop up in my head.

Thanks to Eric Schlosser, I know that companies can legally use the word natural even if they use all kinds of chemicals in their products, so I always check the ingredients to see what they consider to be natural.
INGREDIENTS: Whole wheat flour (whole grain), water, soy fiber and/or oat fiber or wheat fiber, wheat gluten, high fructose corn syrup, yeast, molasses, salt, contains 2% or less of the following: dough conditioners (monoglycerides, ethoxylated mono and diglycerides, sodium stearoyl lactylate, ascorbic acid, azodicarbonamide, enzymes), yeast food (monocalcium phosphate, ammonium sulfate, calcium sulfate), calcium propionate and/or potassium sorbate (to prevent spoilage), vegetable gum, soy flour.
Contains: Wheat, Soybean.
Call me a cynic, but when I see the words "High Fructose Corn Syrup" I don't see healthy. There's more HFCS than yeast in this bread. And even though I suspect that it's not all that much, why use it at all in a product that you're claiming is healthy?

I'm not a food Nazi. I don't believe that HCFS should be banned. But I do believe that anyone who truly wants to offer healthy food products should not use it. And anyone who does use it should not be claiming that their product is all natural and healthy.

The evidence indicates that mono and diglycerides are created by a partial hydrogenation process, but they are not considered fats so they don't have to be included in the transfat content of the nutrition label. The concern is that manufacturers will use more of these to replace the transfats they would have to list if they used. Given a choice, I would opt to leave them out of my diet as well if I am trying to be healthy. And again, if I used them in my products I would not make the claim that my product was all natural and healthy.

I'm sure glad I figured out how easy it is to just make my own bread.


onno david said...

Thanks for the review on this! I have been tempted to try it. I am so sick of 35-40 calorie breads that are so flimsy they can't even hold up for a sandwich, and rip apart when I try to spread PB on them. This bread sounds like it stacks up. thank you for posting and sharing it.

dejamo said...

Um, you're welcome?

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