I am constantly amused at the health claims I hear on TV commercials. Sometimes I find the commercial breaks more interesting than the show I'm watching!
I am even more amused when the companies get caught in the lie:
Nutella is paying just over $3 million to settle a class action lawsuit. Apparently, it had been misleading consumers to think it was a healthy food. A San Diego mom thought Nutella would be a good breakfast staple for her 4-year-old daughter after watching a commercial for the yummy spread. When she realized she had been misled she filed a class action lawsuit against Ferrero USA, the manufacturer.
Aside from the fine, Nutella’s website no longer makes any health claim; it rather focuses on the tag line – “Breakfast never tasted this good.”
So how “healthy” is Nutella?
A 2 tablespoon serving, which is what most people spread on a piece of toast, is 190 calories. It contains 11 grams of fat, 3.5 of which are saturated (18% of your daily recommended value). The 21 grams of sugar in a serving are equivalent to 5 teaspoonfuls!
Here is the ingredient list:
sugar, modified palm oil, hazelnuts, cocoa, skim milk, reduced minerals whey (from milk), soy lecithin: an emulsifier, vanillin: an artificial flavor.
As expected, the first ingredient is sugar. Regarding the modified palm oil, it isn't really clear what has been done with the oil. In the past, Nutella used hazelnut oil, but then switched to much cheaper (and unhealthy) options. Soy lecithin is used to firm up the spread and keep things from separating. Unless organic, it is made with genetically modified soy beans. Vanillin, is a super cheap artificial flavouring. Most of the vanillin manufactured today is made from petroleum and benzene. Yes, you read that right. Benzene is a known carcinogen and we all know what petroleum is. Yuck.
I love Nutella as a treat. A jar should last you a couple of months when used only ocasionally - as a treat.