Is Nutella As Good As It Says?

I am a little disturbed by a bit of news I read on the Reuters site about the high protein chocolate spread called Nutella.

For years Nutella, which is a chocolate hazelnut spread has been sold as a source of high energy and protein. I have always trusted the product because I have been eating on toast and in sandwiches ever since I was a child. I also give it to my own kids on crackers as a high energy spread. It also goes well in hot or cold chocolate drinks. If you grew up in Europe and particularly if you were Dutch, you probably ate butter and Nutella sandwiches that were put in your lunchbox by your mother. Many mothers also mixed the Nutella with sprinkles to make the food even more attractive. Of course this is a rarer sight but Nutella with pink and blue sprinkles sandwiches were quite a common site in U.K. and European countries. It was okay for kids to eat this much sugar as the hazelnuts used to make the spread were so high in protein.

I have also put Nutella on pancakes because it melts so nicely and it goes really nicely with a bit of whipping cream and maple syrup and maybe even a bit of chestnut puree. I have often thought of making a cake with it and using the nutritious spread as icing. The cookies made with Nutella in the middle are quite famous and there are recipes for it all over the web. You can just buy a commercial pack of cookies and spread Nutella in the center to make a kind of Nutella Oreo if you want. Keep in mind that this is a special treat as Nutella is quite high in sugar!

As I have always been a fan of the stuff it was a bit disappointing to read that it was trying to oversell itself as a healthy food when everybody already knows it is not. A stories on 'Reuters Life!' reported that it's television commercial was pulled off the air for exaggerating its health benefits. This was done after over 50 parents complained about the way it was marketed as a healthy breakfast explaining that each jar of Nutella contains 52 hazelnuts, cocoa and the equivalent of a glass of skim milk. The commercial also claimed that Nutella releases energy slowy to the body.

It is the way that the energy is purportedly released by the food that raised the ire of so many viewers. This is because Nutella is equally high in fat and sugar and eating too much at once would not be very good for anyone. Although it is high in protein that it is a bit cancelled out by how high the food is in sugar.

The upshot was that the commercial got pulled off the televisions screens of the United Kingdom. The people who make Nutella, Ferrero UK also put out a statement that they did not mean to mislead anyone.