Nourishing body, mind, & soul.

Healthy Snacks? … Read Those Ingredient Labels!

on March 5, 2014

READ THE LABELS! If you don’t already do so, please learn to read labels of packaged goods you buy.  Products and advertising for them can be very misleading without doing your homework or simply reading the label.  I found this variation of the Kind Bar which is gluten-free, the regular ones are not. The regular Kind Bars also contain soy, although it is the last ingredient, and many have high sugar content… So, again READ!

As I was reading the label of the above pictured gluten-free Kind Bar, I found the words “acacia gum.”  Hmmm, what the heck is that you ask?  Well, I wasn’t 100% sure either and it didn’t sit well with me because I know “gums” are normally not a good ingredient.  Here’s what this stuff is…

Acacai Gum – the sap taken from the acacia tree.  Ahh, you think that’s not so bad? All natural? Sap?…. Think again, this gum is considered “moderately hazardous” as classified by OSHA.  This gum is not considered “harmful by ingestion” because it has not been thoroughly tested with animals and humans.  Also, “harmful” is defined as causing death according to the FDA.  The FDA does say not to eat if you are pregnant…

These are some of the adverse reactions caused by acacia gum in its various forms: If eaten it can cause laxative effect and larger doses can cause intestinal and stomach problems/damage; may raise serum cholesterol; will cause inflammation of skin on contact; entry into blood stream can cause systemic problems; can cause allergic reactions, especially if inhaled in powder form, if inhaled it can cause lung damage, emphysema or chronic bronchitis; and it even causes eye damage and blindness if it touches the eye.

“This is used as mucilage, excipient (inactive substance) for tablets, size, emulsifier, thickener, in candy, other foods; as colloidal stabiliser. In the manufacture of spray-dried `fixed’ flavours. These flavors are used in packaged dry-mix products where flavour stability long shelf life is important. “

Also know as “acacia dealbata gum”, “acacia syrup”, “Australian gum”, “Indian gum”, “Senegal gum”, “Starsol no.1”, “wattle gum”, “gum acacia”, “acacia gum”, “arabic gum”, “gum tragacanth”, “tragacanth gum”, “vegetable gum 414”, “food additive”, polysaccharide.

Do you still want to eat it?

One of my go-to bars is the LARA Bar.  I use it when I don’t have any breaks between clients or if I need fuel before a workout or a little recovery after workout (not a high source of protein) or if I’m starving in the car.  As you can see above, it has a handful of ingredients.  You can pronounce each ingredient and they are real foods.  Apple Pie is my favorite!  Luna even likes it! It’s a healthier option than a candy bar!

Eat well, be well and read!


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