KIND Bars Not Fully Kind to Your Health

Whether it is granola bars, energy bars or protein bars, there is no deficit of these nosh foods on the marketplace nowadays. however, what started out with the right intentions to offer consumers a healthy alternative to chocolate sugarcoat bars, has today become a pseudo-healthy market that is more hype than health, with sugar and fat-laden snacks disguised as health foods. Most bars on the commercialize nowadays contain all kinds of processed or refined ingredients, extracts and isolates of food, dairy and other animal food ingredients, multiple or controversial sweeteners, oils, GMO ingredients and the list goes on .
One mark of bars that market themselves as a healthy choice are KIND bars. Their fantastic motto “ ingredients you can see and pronounce ” make the bars seem like a nutritional seaport. Their clear plastic wrapping box aims to further emphasize the point by showing consumers versatile nuts, seeds and dry fruit, and depending on the diverseness other ingredients like darkness cocoa and puff grains .
But are these bars as clear, honest and goodly as they appear ? unfortunately no. How healthy or unhealthy these bars pace depends on the assortment you consider and most importantly, your understanding of optimal human health and nutrition. Let ’ s explore further as region of this in-depth review .

About KIND Bars

KIND bars are part of the KIND snacks family of foods. The KIND company was started in 2004, in New York, by founder and CEO Daniel Lubetzky, who is besides the author of the bible Do the KIND Thing. The caller made over 500 million dollars of sales in 2015, and in 2017 was reaching three-quarters of a billion. As of May 2018, KIND snacks include 9 different lines of nosh foods in the United States :

  • KIND bars
  • KIND kids bars
  • KIND protein
  • KIND healthy grains bars
  • KIND healthy grains clusters
  • KIND breakfast bars
  • Pressed by KIND (bars)
  • KIND fruit bites
  • KIND sweet & spicy bars
  • and KIND minis, which are smaller versions of the most popular bars

presently, KIND bars come in 25 unlike flavors in the United States, and 12 flavors in Canada. They feature versatile fruit, peanut butter, chocolate, maple, caramel and wide rate of different nut flavors .

My Experience with KIND Bars

It is identical rare for me to buy any kind of commercial “ healthy ” banish, since I make my own bars and snacks well at dwelling, which is the healthiest and most cost-efficient way to go, as you have wide control over the quality of ingredients and processing methods. however the odd time I do, it is normally because a bar I trust to meet my health and food standards, or a new electric potential option caught my attention with a dependable sale gestural, if I have to pass through the legal profession aisle for any reason, or I want to try one for follow-up purposes, such as this .
My first base feel with KIND bars was a few years ago, when I was waiting in line at the grocery store store and noticed them in the usual cocoa, gingiva and candy section by the cash read. I vaguely listen of them before and thought it nice that healthier choices were making their manner into this section. I read through the ingredients of the assortment that was present at that clock time, Nut Delight, and even though they were not up to my fully standards, I deemed them “ dependable enough ” to give the browning automatic rifle a try and have personal feel with KIND bars, given the nature of my work. The biggest thing that stood out from that initial trial was how hard and hood on the tooth the browning automatic rifle was ; decidedly not ideal for optimum oral health to have such a hard and awkward texture. Fast ahead another year and I decide to give KIND bars another try, sampling two different varieties. One was the Almond & Coconut, which had a dainty, chewier texture, and the other was the Dark Chocolate Nuts & Sea Salt, which was evocative in hard texture to that first KIND bar I tried. In terms of relish, regardless of the assortment I found all the bars excessively sweetly and had no intention of trying them again .
In the form of 2018, on a even grocery trip, KIND bars caught my care for the third gear time, as I was surprised to see how many different ones were immediately available in the store and the lucrative sale they were on ( 1/3rd off ). I always intended to write a inspection about them, and this reminded me to do so, as I was besides getting more questions about them from hearing members. I read through the ingredients again and I was greatly depress to see that their already subpar “ healthy ingredients ” were further degraded, by including things like “ carbohydrate ” and “ palm oil ”, which the original cake I tried did not have .
On their web site, KIND shares that “ These bars are where our journey started and it was simple : wholly ingredients like nuts, interracial with fruits and spices bound together with honey. ” One look at the ingredients on their bars today tells us that they intelligibly deviated from that originating mission and are not even in alignment with the “ ingredients you can see and pronounce ” call featured on their bars. Isolated and distill ingredients, like boodle and oils are clearly not any kind of hale foods, nor are they ingredients you can see. This gives the consumer a false idea of what they are actually eating. Add to that dairy, soy sauce protein isolates, flavors and early additives and we are now very far away from what a rightfully “ healthy ” bar would be .
speak of the terminus “ healthy ”, while doing research for this recapitulation I besides learned that in 2015 the FDA tried to get KIND bars to remove the parole goodly from at least some of their browning automatic rifle labels. This decision was late re-evaluated as KIND fought back citing outdated nutritional guidelines. In the end, according to the FDA, the company is allowed to use the terminus “ healthy ” to define its bodied philosophy, not to make any nutritional claims about its products .
Upon examining the dispute, I decidedly agree with KIND that not being allowed to use the word “ healthy ” because their bars surpass a certain number for fat guidelines is an outdated and very reductionist way of looking at nutrition, particularly when a food contains a healthy, wholesome food like nuts. Their arguments about how the FDA makes rulings on food label were besides spot on in showing how superficial and off base the guidelines can be. however, there is an elephant in the room that is being missed, which goes beyond what the FDA and KIND can or can not agree on. The quality of those nuts and early ingredients, a well as the sweeteners and other ingredients used will heavily dictate how “ healthy ” the product ultimately is, which goes above and beyond any numbers that either party is concern in having .
Of course we are not going to get everyone to agree on a universal definition of “ goodly ” due to the many perspectives we have about health and comparisons that are used to gauge the good health of something. Are KIND bars healthy compared to conventional cocoa, granola or sugarcoat bars ? You Bet ! But are they healthy compared to something like Larabar Organic or better yet real number nuts or dried fruits ? not quite. therefore in this case all I can do is partake with you how these bars rate from an optimum health position and you get to decide how they rate based on your personal definitions of what “ healthy ” means to you .

Health and Nutrition Analysis

The first rule of flick to figuring out how healthy a food product may be is to understand that just because it is marketed or labelled with the password “ healthy ” does not mean it is, as discussed above .
The second gear rule of hitchhike is not to fall for or be swayed by any front software claims. alternatively, go directly to the ingredients and get to know precisely what the food product is made of. In the case of KIND bars, the ingredient timbre and health value varies widely, as I will demonstrate below .
To feel adept about a commercial bar from a health and nutrition position, here are some general guidelines of what to look for :

  1. No dairy or animal products.
  2. No blatantly harmful sweeteners, like sugar, high fructose corn syrup, glucose syrup and similar refined sweeteners.
  3. No GMO ingredients.
  4. Some or all organic ingredients.
  5. Whole food ingredients in raw or minimally processed forms.
  6. No isolates like oils, protein powders, etc.
  7. No preservatives or other harmful additives.

Below are 5 KIND bar ingredient lists and nutriment fact labels, with the most harmful ingredients bolded, and baffling ingredients italicized. Please besides note that KIND stripe ingredients vary slightly between their US and canadian products, as shared below, with greater clarity and transparency given to consumers in Canada. Ingredients are besides subject to change or not be precisely what you see on the product package, given that companies reformulate products from time to time, so always read the ingredients on the food package you are considering.
US Website Ingredients : Almonds, peanuts, chicory root fiber, honey, palm kernel oil, sugar, glucose syrup, rice flour, unsweetened chocolate, cocoa powder, sea salt, soy lecithin, natural spirit, cocoa butter .

canadian Website Ingredients : Almonds, peanuts, inulin, honey, palm kernel oil, sugar, glucose syrup, wrinkle rice ( rice flour, sugar, salt ), cocoa mass, cocoa powder, ocean salt, soy lecithin, natural season, cocoa butter .
US Website Ingredients : Almonds, chicory root roughage, honey, palm kernel oil, sugar, glucose syrup, rice flour, milk powder, sea salt, carob powderize, soy lecithin, natural season, annatto* .

canadian Website Ingredients : Almonds, inulin, honey, glucose syrup, palm kernel oil, sugar, crisp rice ( rice flour, sugar, salt ), milk powder, ocean salt, carob gunpowder, soy lecithin, natural spirit, annatto* .
( Annatto is a natural food color, which is presently recognized as safe. )
US Website Ingredients : Almonds, coconut, honey, glucose syrup, rice flour, soy lecithin, chicory root character, sugar, sea salt .

canadian Website Ingredients : Almonds, coconut, honey, glucose syrup, crisp rice ( rice flour, sugar, salt ), soy sauce lecithin, inulin .
US Website Ingredients : Cashew, almonds, chicory root fiber, blueberries, honey, rice flour, glucose syrup, raisins, sugar, vanilla extract, soy lecithin, sea salt, natural spirit, citric acerb .

canadian Website Ingredients : Cashews, almonds, dry blueberries ( blueberries, sugar, natural flavor, citric acid ), inulin, honey, wrinkle rice ( rice flour, sugar, salt ), glucose syrup, raisins, vanilla excerpt, soy lecithin.

Ingredients : Peanuts, glucose syrup, almonds, honey, sugar, soy sauce protein isolate, palm kernel oil, insignificant butter ( peanuts, salt ), unsweetened chocolate, cocoa powder, tapioca starch, chicory ancestor fiber, soy lecithin, sea salt, natural flavor, cocoa butter .

canadian Website Ingredients : Peanuts, glucose syrup, almonds, honey, sugar, soy crisp ( soy protein isolate, tapioca starch, salt ), palm kernel oil, peanut butter ( peanuts, salt ), cocoa mass, cocoa powderize, inulin, soy lecithin, sea salt, natural spirit, cocoa butter .

Note About Sugars

A holistic view of nutrition pays little attention to nutrition facts labels, because those alone focus on numbers, without giving any information of where those numbers come from. A high fat or sugar amount on a label is not necessarily a bad thing, just as a low amount of either is not necessarily a good thing. It all depends on the food ingredients used to make that food product. In this attentiveness, it is the total sugars that consumers should pay attention to the most, where 4 grams of lend boodle is equivalent to 1 teaspoon of sugar. This is where ideal food products would typically use whole food sweeteners, like dates, raisins or early dry fruit, which are a healthy and wholesome source of naturally occurring and nutrient-dense sugars. Isolated sweeteners and added sugars should be minimal, or at best nonexistent .

Ingredient Summary

In general, all KIND bars use at least one type of nut, typically almonds, and revolve around the same ingredients, relying on honey, glucose syrup and sugar as their sweeteners. The worst variety show, ingredient-wise, is their Fruit & Nuts in Yogurt Bar. Which would be the best ? It is hard to say, as you can not get aside from those sweeteners, but decidedly the ones without add palm vegetable oil, cocoa or dairy will rank better. For an extra perspective, visit Eat This not That who provides a rate of all KIND bars .
KIND bars besides have flavors that include antioxidants and while these voice good, they are not a judicious choice given that isolated, and specifically, synthetic vitamins and antioxidants like vitamins A, C and E have been shown to cause more damage and imbalance in our bodies, than good .

Quality of KIND Bar Ingredients

aside from the problems with the actual type of ingredients KIND bars contain, there is besides the problem of quality of the actual ingredients .
Nut Quality: For starters, the bars heavily trust on almonds. Most health conscious consumers know that almonds originating from California, which is the lead almond producer in the world, must be pasteurized for commercial use. This means high heat treatment with steam pasteurization at best, through diverse roasting pasteurization methods, to fumigation with toxic PPO ( propylene oxide ) at worst. second, nuts, like almonds, that have been processed with high inflame are prone to having denatured fatso acids, higher levels of fatty acid oxidation and formation of acrylamide, which can all increase inflammation levels .
Sweetener Quality: When it comes to sweeteners, I feel that KIND is not even trying in this area, like other stripe producers who at least aim to use unrefined versions of cane sugar or less debatable and more wholesome sweeteners like maple syrup or brown university rice syrup. aside from the blatant sugar and glucose syrup they use, the honey used is of fiddling prize, as honey should not be heated and will be highly processed as part of the bar .
Oil Quality: Regardless of the type, oil is not a health food to begin with, as it is an isolated distill of the food that has undergo diverse levels of work, and increases ignition. however, there are decidedly better and worse oils, and palm petroleum, which KIND bars use, is one of the worse oils for health and environmental reasons .
Natural vs Artificial Flavors: Although one sounds better than the other, natural and artificial flavors are not much different, and neither of these are ideal ingredients to have in our food. food should be minimally processed to maintain its original spirit and texture for optimum health. Any flavorer, above and beyond what natural nuts and fruits used in KIND bars can provide, can and should be achieved with saturated herbs and spices, like cinnamon, vanilla, etc .
Organic/GMO Quality: KIND bars do not use organic ingredients, and as per their web site May 2018, they are not pursuing organic documentation. They do claim that their ingredients are non-GMO, which at least helps given that they use soy, and sugars that are probably to be sourced from corn and/or carbohydrate beets, all of which are bad GMO foods .
Vitamin/Antioxidant Quality: As mentioned above, the vitamins/antioxidants used in KIND bars, namely Vitamin A ( acetate rayon ), Vitamin C ( ascorbic acid ), and Vitamin E ( D-alpha Tocopheryl ) are all isolated, synthetic or semi-synthetic substances .
Raw Ingredient Quality: KIND bars will not be suitable for those who aim to eat a natural food diet or who care about the nutritional and health value of bleak ingredients, given that most of their ingredients and/or the bars themselves have been subjected to diverse estrus work methods .
Vegan Suitability: KIND bars will not be suitable for vegans, as they contain honey and respective incorporate dairy ingredients .
Gluten-Free Suitability: KIND bars are gluten-free, but for the most partially this is more of a market tactic than a public health message, given that the bars are based on fruits and nuts, and do not contain pale yellow or exchangeable granulate ingredients. This is something that in truth can be mentioned on the back, along with the allergen information. however, given the thriving gluten-free diligence, that is largely scientifically uncorroborated, many food companies today use gluten-free commercialize to make their product appear healthier than it is, ride the fad roll of current consumer demand, and frequently distract away from the less desirable qualities of the food product .
The positive news is that KIND can well improve to become a cleaner and healthier food product by just removing all dairy and boodle, and swapping beloved and glucose syrup for brown university rice and maple syrup, and swapping decoration vegetable oil for coconut anoint. These changes entirely would be a huge mistreat in the right focus .

KIND Bar Review Summary

KIND Bar Pros

  • Based on whole food ingredients
  • Excellent variety of flavors
  • Good tasting
  • Gluten Free
  • Non GMO
  • Average price

KIND Bar Cons

  • Use some isolates, extracts and synthetic ingredients
  • Use unhealthy sweeteners, including sugar
  • Use palm oil
  • Not made of organic ingredients
  • Hard on teeth
  • Overly sweet
  • Not vegan friendly (honey, dairy)
  • Not raw friendly

Availability & Price of KIND Bars

KIND bars are widely available throughout the United States and Canada, and are expanding into versatile international markets. You can find them easily at health food stores, many grocery stores, on-line stores and big-box stores, like Walmart .

  • A single KIND bar usually costs under $2.00 US/CAD.
  • A box of 12 bars can range from $15 to $30, depending on the store and any sales in effect.

Should You Eat KIND Bars?

Whether you should consider these bars as a likely bite for yourself will highly depend where you are on your health travel .

  • If you are just starting to become more health conscious and trying to swap out conventional cocoa, candy and granola bars for something with more nutritional benefits and less health harm properties, then KIND bars are decidedly a dependable, potential option for you .
  • If you are already on a health conscious travel and like to rely on some commercial “ energy ” bars as snacks, then there are many better options out there to choose from, like Larabar, Larabar Organic or Raw Rev Organic Bars. Otherwise you will have to decide if the ingredients of KIND bars are in alliance with what “ healthy ” means to you .
  • If you are very advance on your health travel, then you are making your own truly goodly bars and not relying on most, if any, commercial bars.

And remember to keep things in perspective where appliance and quality meet ; the close you get to the whole, unprocessed food, the better. So a handful of raw nuts, and/or some fresh or dried fruits are frequently all that is needed for the fastest, best and healthiest snacks .


KIND bars decidedly have a batch of likely and I would love to have supported them in their well-intentioned mission. unfortunately when there are some clear inconsistencies between what is being said and what is being provided, it raises a red flag and taints the integrity of the product and company. I am all for supplying the public with better food options, compared to the trash that is out there, and KIND is decidedly providing a much healthier option to many snack foods out there, but the level of “ healthy ” promoting market that KIND does, does not quite match what their product ingredients say .
I know that it is not easy out there for consumers and companies alike, given the many nutrition and health problems in our populace nowadays. But this is besides why we don ’ t need more dilution and confusion of what healthy eating and healthy foods are all about. I hope that as awareness continues to grow about proper homo nutriment and how the food we eat impacts our health and the environment, KIND snacks will follow courtship to improve and clean up what can be a great and commodious bite cake for people who rely on and appreciate such products .

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Category : Healthy