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I'm Mad At Nature Valley's Granola Bars


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36 replies to this topic

#1 626Belle

 
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Posted 09 January 2009 - 09:19 AM

Figuring out that it was gluten that was causing me such digestive pain and discomfort starting almost a year ago sent me into a deep depression. Suddenly, I couldn't eat ANYTHING, and everything hurt. I racked up some doctor bills, maxed out my crappy health benefits, and didn't even get a diagnosis. Before all this mess, getting through the day was hard enough hungerwise because of my high metabolism. I also get really bored with large portions of the same food, so I like to have numerous sides or snacks to go with meals.

Now, with this new stumbling block, it became extremely difficult to pack lunches to take to work. I found time to prepare steamed or sauteed zucchini and white or brown rice, but what about snacks? Sure, applesauce, yogurt, fruit snacks, fresh fruit, carrots, and the like are good choices that are easy to take along, but I was missing something more "substantial." Since I could no longer choose crackers or cookies, I looked at various bars and thought my usual staple made by Nature Valley would still work. Unfortunately, when I first started the gluten-free diet, I didn't comprehend the intricacies of it, which include the danger of the word malt.

Now I know and I'm more careful, but I had overlooked my granola bars. (I haven't noticed any discomfort from eating oats, by the way)
I was all too trusting of your labeling practices, NV. Sure, you list out everything all nice and neat:

"Ingredients
Whole Grain Rolled Oats , Sugar , Canola Oil , Crisp Rice with Soy Protein , Rice Flour , Soy Protein Concentrate , Sugar , Malt , Salt , Honey , Brown Sugar Syrup , High Fructose Corn Syrup , Salt , Soy Lecithin , Baking Soda , Natural Flavor , Peanut Flour , Almond Flour , Pecan Flour"

and even include a nice little warning that seems pretty specific:

"Warnings
Contains soy, almond, peanut and pecan ingredients."

...leaving it all too easy to overlook the fact that your "crisp rice with soy protein" is infected with malt. :o
I've been eating your bars on and off for the last 9 months, so trusting, so unaware, blaming the gurgly guts on cross-contamination of *other* products until I was bored the other day at school and read the ingredients of an Oats 'n Honey bar just to occupy myself as I munched on it.

I'm mad now.
  • At your company for having such delicious, inexpensive, and easily obtainable bars that I can't eat.
  • At myself for not reading more slowly and noticing "malt" hiding there right next to "salt"
  • At crisp rice makers for finding it completely necessary to flavor their products with malt powders, syrups, and extracts.
...and at gluten in general. I feel like I didn't evolve properly or something :angry:

(Quotes sourced from www.walgreens.com because the US Nature Valley site doesn't list their individual product ingredients)
Note:
While I was searching for the ingredients for the granola bars, I may have stumbled upon one or two flavors that might not have the crisped rice and offending malt in them, so I'm going to check all of the flavors next time I'm at the store. You're still on my pooplist, though. *shakes fist*
  • 0
In the words of my allergist: "You're an enigma. I don't know what else to tell you."

Gluten free since 5/2008
Scratch test showed positives for: Maple trees (not syrup), some grasses.
(No seasonal allergy symptoms)
No food "allergies" found.
Blood test: negative for celiac
No biopsy done.
Elimination diet showed improvement when gluten was avoided.
Celiac-like symptoms occur after eating wheat, barley, or rye products. Oats usually okay.

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#2 Jestgar

 
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Posted 09 January 2009 - 09:26 AM

...leaving it all too easy to overlook the fact that your "crisp rice with soy protein" is infected with malt. :o

:lol: :lol: :lol:

Excellent use of the language!
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#3 626Belle

 
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Posted 09 January 2009 - 09:46 AM

Thanks! :) I was trying to keep it light even though I really am pretty incensed about this. My favorite snack, gone! :o
  • 0
In the words of my allergist: "You're an enigma. I don't know what else to tell you."

Gluten free since 5/2008
Scratch test showed positives for: Maple trees (not syrup), some grasses.
(No seasonal allergy symptoms)
No food "allergies" found.
Blood test: negative for celiac
No biopsy done.
Elimination diet showed improvement when gluten was avoided.
Celiac-like symptoms occur after eating wheat, barley, or rye products. Oats usually okay.

#4 ravenwoodglass

 
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Posted 09 January 2009 - 09:51 AM

I think we all understand your frustration. Have you seen Bakery on Main granola bars? They are made in a dedicated facility and have neither oats nor malt. My favorite is the pnut butter and chocolate chip. They also make really good granola's. If you can't find them at the market they do have a website.
  • 0
Courage does not always roar, sometimes courage is the quiet voice at the end of the day saying
"I will try again tommorrow" (Mary Anne Radmacher)


celiac 49 years - Misdiagnosed for 45
Blood tested and repeatedly negative
Diagnosed by Allergist with elimination diet and diagnosis confirmed by GI in 2002
Misdiagnoses for 15 years were IBS-D, ataxia, migraines, anxiety, depression, fibromyalgia, parathesias, arthritis, livedo reticularis, hairloss, premature menopause, osteoporosis, kidney damage, diverticulosis, prediabetes and ulcers, dermatitis herpeformis
All bold resoved or went into remission with proper diagnosis of Celiac November 2002
Some residual nerve damage remains as of 2006- this has continued to resolve after eliminating soy in 2007

Mother died of celiac related cancer at 56
Twin brother died as a result of autoimmune liver destruction at age 15

Children 2 with Ulcers, GERD, Depression, , 1 with DH, 1 with severe growth stunting (male adult 5 feet)both finally diagnosed Celiac through blood testing and 1 with endo 6 months after Mom


Positive to Soy and Casien also Aug 2007

Gluten Sensitivity Gene Test Aug 2007
HLA-DQB1 Molecular analysis, Allele 1 0303

HLA-DQB1 Molecular analysis, Allele 2 0303

Serologic equivalent: HLA-DQ 3,3 (Subtype 9,9)

#5 626Belle

 
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Posted 09 January 2009 - 10:26 AM

I think we all understand your frustration. Have you seen Bakery on Main granola bars? They are made in a dedicated facility and have neither oats nor malt. My favorite is the pnut butter and chocolate chip. They also make really good granola's. If you can't find them at the market they do have a website.


I'll have to look into that. I don't recall seeing their products at the Whole Foods Market where I usually get my gluten-free stuff, but I'll do a search and see what it turns up. If they're in my price range, I might do what others suggest and ask my local grocers if they can start carrying them :)
Thanks!
  • 0
In the words of my allergist: "You're an enigma. I don't know what else to tell you."

Gluten free since 5/2008
Scratch test showed positives for: Maple trees (not syrup), some grasses.
(No seasonal allergy symptoms)
No food "allergies" found.
Blood test: negative for celiac
No biopsy done.
Elimination diet showed improvement when gluten was avoided.
Celiac-like symptoms occur after eating wheat, barley, or rye products. Oats usually okay.

#6 *lee-lee*

 
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Posted 09 January 2009 - 10:47 AM

I've been eating your bars on and off for the last 9 months, so trusting, so unaware, blaming the gurgly guts on cross-contamination of *other* products


Belle - i did this too for a few months when i first started the diet. i had always liked the NV granola bars and i was just thankful to have something i could throw in my purse to snack on if i wasn't at home. one day i looked a little more carefully at the ingredients and saw the dreaded word...MALT. oh how i mourned the loss of one of my favorite snacks!

i haven't found anything to replace them with so i've adapted to live without granola bars... :( i'll have to keep a look out for the Bakery on Main brand.
  • 0
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6/24/2008 - negative biopsy
8/11/2008 - DQ2 gene present

7/1/2008 - gluten-free
(and dairy-light until 12/1/2008)

#7 626Belle

 
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Posted 09 January 2009 - 10:50 AM

i haven't found anything to replace them with so i've adapted to live without granola bars... :( i'll have to keep a look out for the Bakery on Main brand.

Oh, sweet! There is a location near me.
Try this link to see if there's one close to you:
Bakery on Main Store Locations
  • 0
In the words of my allergist: "You're an enigma. I don't know what else to tell you."

Gluten free since 5/2008
Scratch test showed positives for: Maple trees (not syrup), some grasses.
(No seasonal allergy symptoms)
No food "allergies" found.
Blood test: negative for celiac
No biopsy done.
Elimination diet showed improvement when gluten was avoided.
Celiac-like symptoms occur after eating wheat, barley, or rye products. Oats usually okay.

#8 mushroom

 
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Posted 09 January 2009 - 11:31 AM

Without intending to rain on your rant, this bar sounds like a disaster to me. I wouldn't have got beyond the first ingredient!! But I certainly run a mile when I see "malt". To think as a child I had to consume three tablespoons full after dinner every night.

"Ingredients
Whole Grain Rolled Oats , ... Crisp Rice with Soy Protein ... Soy Protein Concentrate ,
... Malt ... Soy Lecithin ..."

I would be dead if I ate this.
  • 0
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Potato starch free July 2009
(Totally) corn free Nov. 2009
Legume free March 2010
Now tolerant of lactose

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#9 626Belle

 
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Posted 09 January 2009 - 12:12 PM

Without intending to rain on your rant, this bar sounds like a disaster to me. I wouldn't have got beyond the first ingredient!! But I certainly run a mile when I see "malt". To think as a child I had to consume three tablespoons full after dinner every night.

"Ingredients
Whole Grain Rolled Oats , ... Crisp Rice with Soy Protein ... Soy Protein Concentrate ,
... Malt ... Soy Lecithin ..."

I would be dead if I ate this.

I can totally understand, which is why I have a note in my post and even my signature that I eat oats. [/jinx] I only bother with a limited number of things that I eat regularly that contain oat products. It's hard... (understatement of the decade)
  • 0
In the words of my allergist: "You're an enigma. I don't know what else to tell you."

Gluten free since 5/2008
Scratch test showed positives for: Maple trees (not syrup), some grasses.
(No seasonal allergy symptoms)
No food "allergies" found.
Blood test: negative for celiac
No biopsy done.
Elimination diet showed improvement when gluten was avoided.
Celiac-like symptoms occur after eating wheat, barley, or rye products. Oats usually okay.

#10 celiac-charmer

 
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Posted 10 January 2009 - 06:25 PM

I too have felt discouraged and sad when I had to give up my granola bars. I spent many weeks searching for an alternative until I gave up. A few weeks ago I was laying in bed and thought "Just cause I can't find a subsitute on the shelves doesn't mean I can't make it myself".

I googled gluten-free granola bars and found a bunch of really great recipes. If you have the time I suggest you make your own. I like making them myself for these reasons:

*You control what you put in there therefore you know that there isn't anything you CAN'T eat in them

*They have less preservatives and no corn syrup and are therefore better for you

*You can put them in plastic ziploc bags and put them in your purse, school bag, backpack. briefcase etc....

*They are tasty

*You can get pretty creative with it and find a recipe that suits you and your specific tastes

I have had a really hard time finding ANY gluten-free granola. Everywhere I go to buy them are out or they just don't carry it. I've thought about ordering online but then you pay for shipping (F that!). I just substitute oats for corn or rice cereal instead.

Let us know if the ones you found are any good. I did see that they sell them pretty close to me so I'll be curious to know how they taste. ;)
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#11 Mariahjh

 
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Posted 12 January 2009 - 04:47 PM

GASP! :o

I am so surprised that little things that are labeled so wrong, I have to be more careful! I am new to Celiac and what I can do and can not do and it has been very frustrating, although I am happy that the doctors finally found out what was causing me such upset since I was 12 years olds (nine years later).

I wonder what else would be hiding as "evil" to us with celiac?

I do know that there is this yummy maple granola cereal that is good and a trail mix granola snack at Trader Joe's if you have any near you.
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#12 MaryJones2

 
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Posted 12 January 2009 - 06:10 PM

The other two ingredients that jumped out at me are oats and natural flavors - both of these are potential sources for hidden gluten.
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#13 626Belle

 
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Posted 13 January 2009 - 12:00 PM

"Just cause I can't find a subsitute on the shelves doesn't mean I can't make it myself".

I'm aware of this option, but I'm trying to avoid having to make *so many* things. I'm especially irritated by this new exclusion from my diet because these granola bars are sold at so many places. Gas stations, Walgreens, sometimes even office supply stores that have a random assortment of candy bars at the front. My grab-and-go option is gone, and now I'm left with chocolate and other less-nutritious things.

I do know that there is this yummy maple granola cereal that is good and a trail mix granola snack at Trader Joe's if you have any near you.

There are a few on my way home from work, so I might look again. So far, every bar snack I've looked at there has had gluten in it, and I'm not a fan of most power-bar things that they have.

The other two ingredients that jumped out at me are oats and natural flavors - both of these are potential sources for hidden gluten.

*so far* I'm pretty comfortable with oats still in my diet. My gluten reactions were nasty and debilitating, and I'm not getting the slightest tummy gurgle even though I've kept oats. I know that doesn't guarantee that they're not still reaking havoc in my small intestine, but breakfast is really important to me. I have to eat something filling enough to last a couple hours (cereal doesn't work for me), it has to be inexpensive, it has to be shelf-stable enough to keep in my desk at work, and I can't afford to go down to the work cafeteria (plus they CC everything, so it's useless), so letting go of oatmeal would be devastating right now.

Thanks to all of you for reading. I'm still open to suggestions and any other stories :)
  • 0
In the words of my allergist: "You're an enigma. I don't know what else to tell you."

Gluten free since 5/2008
Scratch test showed positives for: Maple trees (not syrup), some grasses.
(No seasonal allergy symptoms)
No food "allergies" found.
Blood test: negative for celiac
No biopsy done.
Elimination diet showed improvement when gluten was avoided.
Celiac-like symptoms occur after eating wheat, barley, or rye products. Oats usually okay.

#14 brigala

 
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Posted 13 January 2009 - 06:56 PM

Have you tried the Nature Valley Roasted Nut Crunch Bars? They come in Almond and Peanut varieties.

Don't confuse them with the Sweet & Salty Nut Bars, which also contain "granola bar" ingredients -- including the dreaded malt, if I remember correctly.

Almond Crunch Ingredients:
ALMONDS, ROASTED PEANUTS, SUGAR, SUNFLOWER SEEDS, CORN SYRUP, YELLOW CORN FLOUR, SALT, CORN OIL, CALCIUM CARBONATE, COLOR ADDED.
TOCOPHEROL ADDED TO PRESERVE FRESHNESS.

Peanut Crunch Ingredients:
ROASTED PEANUTS, SUNFLOWER SEEDS, SUGAR, CORN SYRUP, YELLOW CORN FLOUR, SALT, CORN OIL, CALCIUM CARBONATE, COLOR ADDED, ALMOND FLOUR. TOCOPHEROL ADDED TO PRESERVE FRESHNESS.

I've seen a couple of different formulations of these bars (I read the ingredients every time, and I don't think the ingredients lists are the same every time I read them) but I've never seen any with malt or other potential gluten ingredients.

-Elizabeth
  • 0

gluten-free since mid-2007.
Symptoms: "IBS," chronic fatigue, chronic pain. 

Celiac is a family affair for us; my mom, sister, and one of my sons are gluten free. At least it makes holiday gatherings easier. 


#15 626Belle

 
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Posted 20 January 2009 - 09:14 AM

Thanks for the suggestion. I'll have to check into those and see if I like them.
  • 0
In the words of my allergist: "You're an enigma. I don't know what else to tell you."

Gluten free since 5/2008
Scratch test showed positives for: Maple trees (not syrup), some grasses.
(No seasonal allergy symptoms)
No food "allergies" found.
Blood test: negative for celiac
No biopsy done.
Elimination diet showed improvement when gluten was avoided.
Celiac-like symptoms occur after eating wheat, barley, or rye products. Oats usually okay.




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