Image by: Brandi Korte
By Jake Bradshaw
When it comes to your health, nutrition is everything. It’s the content in our food, our drinks, and our supplements that transform our bodies from lean and mean to a muscle machine. Most times, we fail to read what’s on the nutrition fact label. We figure: it’s in the health section, so it must be good right?
Though most products out there have great intentions when it comes to filling our body with the things it needs to deliver the results we want, there are some that may not do much at all. It’s time to distinguish which ones are worth the purchase, and which ones are a waste of time.
What To Look For
Just because it’s small and in a bright wrapper doesn’t mean it is a snack. In fact, a lot of power bars have more fat, carbs, and sugar than an average meal. So unless you’re planning on losing a lot of weight, and using these bars as a meal replacement, be sure to read the nutrition label.
Some things to look for: Protein (at least 13 grams), Carbs (most of the time they’re not the good kind, so find a pretty low content), type of Fat (a lot of companies replace their fat with palm oil. This is worse than saturated fat. Beware), Sodium (sweeteners will be added to make the protein taste better, so eat it in a healthy quantity).
#1) PowerBar Protein Plus, Reduced Sugar, $2,39
PowerBar Inc. replaced it’s sugar fructose content with sugar alcohols, which are natural carbs. This created a slight improvement in the nutritional benefits. Sugar alcohols have less of an impact on insulin levels which will always keep the fat cells at bay.
Protein Plus has whey protein, casein, and soy protein which are all digested at different time rates, which makes for a longer lasting dose of energy. A great bar for mid workout, it replenishes your muscles while stimulating the metabolism. With 270 calories, 22 grams of protein, 9 grams of fat, and 30 grams of carbs, it will certain give your body a punch.
#2) PowerCrunch Energy Bar, $2.29
Having 205 calories, 14 grams of protein, 10- 13 grams of carbs, and 12 grams of fat, it is one of the leanest bars on the market and perfect for a pre-workout. It tastes like a cookie and is easily absorbent with popular energy boosts, like No Xplode. Because it’s so light, you won’t feel heavy during your cardio regiment, so it’s perfect for pre-workout.
#3) Detour Bars, $2.00
Containing whey protein with little sugar, Detour packs a serious punch in your regiment. With only 150 calories, 15 grams of protein, 34 grams of carbs, and 9 grams of fat, it is truly one of those bars that can be a snack.
With it’s unique flavors (like Peanut Butter Cream and Chocolate Chip Caramel), it’s difficult not to find something to your liking. Detour uses real peanut butter in it’s ingredients, unlike a lot of companies that use a fake knock-off substitute.
#4) Think Thin Bars, $1.99
Not only is it gluten-free, which cuts out a lot of unwanted chemicals, but it replaces the sugar content with sugar alcohols. With 230 calories, 20 grams of protein, 23 grams of carbs, and 8 grams of fat, they’re great to have with a post-workout smoothie. Together, they’ll definitely leave you full longer, and eventually building lean muscle and minimal fat.
#5) SquareBar, $3.00
A fairly new company, all of SquareBar’s products are vegan, organic, non-GMO, and gluten/soy free. The natural ingredients alone will leave you with energy either before or during your workout. With about 200 calories and 12 grams of protein, it’s one of the most sophisticated mixes out there.
Their protein source isn’t whey or soy, but brown rice! The brown rice concentrate used in the bars are so high that the amino acid profile is enhanced, making it a complete and natural protein. It’s clean, it’s light, and is perfect for any occasion.