There are several types of Fiber One chewy bars:
Regular Oat Bar (1 bar = 40g, fibre 9g, sugars 7g, 140 calories)
- 90 Calorie Bar (1 bar = 23g, fibre 5g, sugars 5g, 90 calories)
Protein (1 bar = 33g, fibre 5g, sugars 7g, protein 6g, 140 calories)
- Protein Nut (1 bar = 40g, fibre 6g, sugars 5g, protein 10g, 180-190 calories)
- Layered Chewy Bar (1 bar = 36g, fibre 7g, sugars 6-8g, 140-150 calories)
What are the Pros and Cons of Fiber One bars?
1. Chicory root extract is usually listed as the first or second ingredient in Fiber One bars. This means most of the fibre in Fiber One bars comes from chicory root. The latter is a rich source of soluble fibre known as inulin. It is added to food products to boost their fibre content and improve taste or texture.
Inulin is a prebiotic that promotes the growth of specific beneficial gut bacteria. It is not digested in the small intestines but is fermented by beneficial bacteria in the colon. Hence, chicory root extract or inulin can help relieve constipation, protects against gastrointestinal diseases and improves overall health.
2. Low in sugar
1. Fiber One bars contain too many ingredients including artificial additives such as colour, tricalcium phosphate, dipotassium phosphate, etc.
Here’s the ingredient list for a 90 Calorie Chocolate Caramel & Pretzel bar:
” INGREDIENTS: Chicory Root Extract, Rice Flour, Sugar, Whole Wheat Flour, High Maltrose Corn Syrup, Whole Grain Oats, Vegetable Oil (palm kernel, canola, and/or soybean oil), Semi-Sweet Chocolate Chips (sugar, chocolate liquor processed with alkali, cocoa butter, milkfat, soy lecithin, natural flavor), Puffed Durum Wheat, Vegetable Glycerin, Honey, Maltodextrin, Dutch Cocoa (processed with alkali), Soy Lecithin, Cocoa, Salt, Barley Malt Extract, Cellulose Gum, Reduced Minerals Whey, Milk, Fructose, Nonfat Milk, Baking Soda, Yeast, Natural Flavor, Oil of Rosemary, Color (yellow 5 & 6 lake, red 40 lqake, blue 1 lake and other color added), Vitamin Added to Maintain Freshness.”
Here’s the ingredient list for Protein Caramel Nut bar:
“INGREDIENTS: Roasted Peanuts, Chicory Root Extract, Soy Protein Isolate, Sugar, Corn Syrup, Vegetable Oil (palm kernel, palm, canola), Water, Whey Protein Concentrate, Maltodextrin, Rice Flour, Cocoa, Glycerin, Rice Starch, Nonfat Milk, Fructose, Salt, Corn Starch, Soy Lecithin, Mono and Diglycerides, Disodium Phosphate, Barley Malt Extract, Natural Flavor, Carrageenan, Caramel Color, Mixed Tocopherols Added to Retain Freshness. Contains Peanuts, Soy and Milk. May Contain Wheat Ingredients.”
2. Due to the fermentation of inulin (chicory root extract) in the colon, excess consumption of Fiber One bars may cause gastrointestinal side effects such gas, bloating, flatulence, cramps or diarrhea in some people.
3. GMO ingredients – Product labels do not indicate that corn syrup, starch and flour, canola oil, soy protein and soybean oil used in the bars are non-GMO.
4. Soy Protein & Soy Protein Isolate – Fiber One Protein and Protein & Nut bars contain soy protein and/or soy protein isolate, which are highly processed and a cheap source of protein. There are also potential safety concerns on increased consumption of soy products as discussed here.
While the high fibre content of Fiber One bars is great for satisfying cravings and increasing fibre intake, it may cause gastrointestinal discomfort in some people. Chicory root extract (inulin) does not have the taste and texture of normal fibre foods, thus it is easy to overconsume it. So, don’t try to eat too many bars at one time or in a day.
Fiber One bars are a let down due to the long list of ingredients and artificial additives. There are other granola or protein bars that have better nutritional profiles than Fiber One bars.