Are Protein Bars Considered Processed Food
Technically, protein bars are considered processed foods. Thats because processed food is defined as any food that has been altered in some way during preparation. But just because protein bars fall into the processed food category doesnt mean theyre necessarily bad for you. Like any non-whole food, they should be eaten less frequently, but as long as youre buying protein bars that are high in protein, low in sugar and made with minimal whole-food ingredients, they can be a healthy addition to your diet.
What Are Protein Bars
High protein and protein-rich ingredients make these bars useful as meal replacement bars. Instant relief for hunger pangs, these bars are also an instant on the go snack for a heavy meal enriched with protein. These bars are typically for heavy use and, for athletes and bodybuilders for activities that include a heavy and intense workout. As they have high nutrients particularly for recovery and exercise support.
What Is Smart Bar
Our Smart Bar is a convenient and great-tasting low-sugar, high-protein snack. Available in eight outrageously tempting flavours, Smart Bar contains a super-soft protein centre that is coated in gooey caramel and crunchy protein crispies dipped in smooth milk chocolate.
Sounds seriously indulgent right? Which must mean it isnt healthy? Think again! With a massive 20g of quality protein and less than 2g of sugar per bar, it really is the smart choice when it comes to protein bars.
As well as this, our Plant Smart Bar is a delicious high-protein, low-sugar snack suitable for vegans and vegetarians. The bar also contains a super-soft protein centre, coated in gooey caramel and protein crispies, which truly deliver that satisfying crunch texture when you take a bite.
If this wasnt enough, the smooth chocolate coating really does replicate a true confectionary bar taste, whilst keeping your macros intact. Smart Bar Plant delivers 20g of quality protein and less than 1g sugar .
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Benefits Of Protein Bars For Fitness Enthusiasts
Why active people choose protein bars for that extra kick
In todays busy world, we could all do with a bit of extra energy, especially if we want to enjoy an active lifestyle. Daily chores, deadlines, and family responsibilities can leave us with little left in the tank to meet our fitness goals or enjoy the activities we love.
Protein bars are a simple way to boost energy levels easily and effectively. Here are six benefits of the trusty protein bar.
Choose the perfect protein bar HERE
Who Shouldnt Buy Extend Bar Blood Sugar Control Protein Bars
- People who want a higher calorie content in their protein bar should know that these bars only contain between 130 and 160 calories.
- Athletes who want a higher protein content can get higher protein content from other products, as these range from nine to 12 grams of protein per bar.
If youre trying to avoid a sugar high and then crash, Extend Bars might be able to help with their slow-release carbs and no added sugars. Theyre especially ideal for people with diabetes who are constantly watching their blood sugar levels.
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How Do You Know If A Protein Bar Is Healthy
In general, you know if the protein bar is healthy after reading the nutrition information on the product labels. However, unregulated supplement industry and marketing methods can lead consumers to perceive protein bars as healthier just because of the protein title.
These days every one can:
- Register supplement company
- Make claims that arent fact checked
- Forget to list all the ingredients
- Present simple, widely available ingredients as somehow superior to others
Plus, consumer reports found that:
- Some supplement contains heavy metals, pesticides, or prescription drugs
- Rules conveying to manufacturing companies dont apply to companies that produce vitamins, herbs, and other raw ingredients
- Some countries have repeatedly been caught exporting contaminated products
And people who usually fall to buy it are the beginners who dont really know any better, they dont have time to research and believe that just because it says on the bar good source of protein it must mean its good .
The problem is that manufactures can literally put any information on the labels.
As a consumer, how do you know if a protein bar is OK to take? Start by looking for a GMP sticker, which stands for Good Manufacturing Practices or you can check ConsumeLab to see if the product has been approved and tested.
Best Protein Bar For Muscle Gain: Pure Protein Bar
Bodybuilders often gravitate towards Pure Protein bars for building strength, since theyre designed to support lean muscle and an active lifestyle. Packing in 20 grams of protein, 17 grams of carbohydrates and two grams of sugar per bar, Pure Protein Bars are one of the best options to consider if gaining muscle mass is your goal. Plus, the low sugar content helps people avoid any energy crashes before or after a workout.
Some of the flavors available include chocolate salted caramel, chewy chocolate chip and birthday cake. While these protein bars can get expensive if bought on Pure Proteins official website, coming in at $3.99 per bar, you can get a much better deal of $2.11 per bar if you purchase them on iHerb.com.
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Do Vegan Protein Bars Give You Energy
Protein bars are great because they provide a powerful source of energy in a convenient portable format. Whether youre replacing a meal, or refueling yourself on a hike, protein bars can give you the fuel boost you need to conquer the day-to-day AND the great outdoors, alike. But do vegan energy bars provide you with the same amount of energy? The answer is yes they do! In fact, they may even give you more energy.
What Happens To Your Body When You Eat An Energy Bar
The body breaks down most carbohydrates from the foods we eat and converts them to a type of sugar called glucose. Glucose is absorbed through your gut wall and then transported around your body in your bloodstream.
Your body then produces insulin, which tells your cells to absorb the sugars. Your body then has two options: burn the sugar molecules for energy now, or store them for later use. Most is stored in your muscles and liver as glycogen. These glycogen stores are your bodys ready-to-go energy source. Any excess is converted to fat for longer-term energy storage.
If you eat an energy bar before or during exercise it does a couple of things. Firstly, it stimulates your body to regulate its glycogen stores for energy. Think of it like an ignition in a car. Secondly it provides a ready fuel source which can go straight from your bloodstream to your muscles without needing to be stored.
If you eat an energy bar after a workout, youre giving your body the grams of carbohydrate it needs to replenish your depleted stores promoting recovery and stops you getting hangry!
Glucose energy drinks, for instance, would be quick to work during exercise as the glucose doesnt take much breaking down before you can use it as fuel. More complex carbs take longer but can provide a longer and more sustainable supply of energy.
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Energy Sources In Vegan Protein Bars
Nuts and seeds are one of our favorite sources of energy. Packed with protein, healthy fats, and vitamins, you can eat a handful of nuts on their own, or enjoy them in a bar for a quick pick-me-up. On average, an ounce of nuts contains about 160 calories, according to Harvard Medical School.
Calories are defined as one unit of energy. To put it simply, the more calories you eat, the more energy you consume. Of course, you dont want to eat too many calories in a day, and you also want to make sure youre not consuming empty calories. The phrase empty calories describes food that contains little to no nutritional valuethat food which only provides you with, well, calories left to burn during your daily physical activity.
Nuts and seeds not only provide you with a hearty source of good calories , but they also contain protein, omega-3s, magnesium, and vitamins. According to the National Institute of Health, protein from plant sources tends to be lower in saturated fat, contains no cholesterol, and provides fiber and other health-promoting nutrients. Nuts and seeds also contain healthy fats, which are another source of energy. These fats help the body absorb nutrients and enable cells to perform their regular functions.
Other Things To Look For
Carbohydrates are another macronutrient that helps suppress ghrelin secretion, but choosing the right kind of carbs is key. Look for a protein bar that contains several grams of fiber. Fiber is a beneficial carb that helps satisfy your hunger and keeps you feeling full longer than simple carbs such as those found in white bread and sugary breakfast cereals. Also, look for a protein bar that has less than 12 grams of sugar, an ingredient that just drives up the calorie content of the bar without adding any nutrients. Applegate also suggests choosing a bar that contains between 5 and 7 grams of fat.
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What Happens If You Eat Too Many Clif Bars
They can be toxic to your body, and unfortunately, Clif Bars are loaded with them. Even if you dont get a stomach ache from Clif Bars, the lectins youre consuming could be wreaking havoc. If you have a sensitive immune system and/or are prone to inflammation, youll want to avoid lectins and Clif Bars altogether.
Rise Real Food Protein Bars
- âProtein: 20 gramsâ
A busy day calls for a satiating snack, and these bars are made with whole ingredients, such as organic almonds and honey for a hint of sweetness. Even more, they’re an excellent source of fiber and healthy fats. These protein bars also come in a variety of flavors, including unique options like Mint Chocolate Chip and Snickerdoodle.
âBuy it:â âPrice:â $28.49 for 12 bars
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How To Tell Which Bars Are Worth Consuming And Which Better Belong In The Candy Aisle
Theyre fast, easy and portable, claim to be good for you, and sometimes as tasty as the average chocolate bar.
One look at the array of energy bars on the shelves of your grocery store is a sign of their popularity. Sixty percent of consumers want their snacks to give them an energy boost, according to the 2016 IRI Snacking Survey.
But just because energy bars seem healthy and natural after all, many are packed with fiber and protein in the form of dried fruit and nuts they arent, necessarily, says Helen Mullen, a certified dietitian nutritionist and a clinical dietitian with NewYork-Presbyterian. Some contain added sugar and saturated fat, not to mention upward of 350 calories each.
Here, Mullen helps clear up the confusion and debunks common myths about this popular snack.
Whats a good rule of thumb when choosing an energy bar?The fewer ingredients on the label, the better. The more additives you see particularly excess sugar alcohols , which can cause gastric distress the less likely the bar is to deserve the healthy moniker. Palm oils, soy protein isolate and so-called natural flavors are also red flags. Instead, reach for a bar with fewer ingredients and make sure you recognize them and can pronounce them. Think: nuts, raisins, seeds, honey or even dark chocolate. Lärabar chocolate chip cookie dough flavor, for instance, contains only fruit, nuts, chocolate and sea salt.
Here Are 3 Protein Bar Options For You
- The BOSS! Cookie Triple Chocolate Chunk
Packed with 18 g of protein and 6 g of prebiotic fiber to support gut health.
Flavors: Peanut Butter Chunk, and Chocolate Chunk.
- COOKIES & CREAM from Quest Nutrition
Crunchy and creamy bite, with 21g of protein and 14g fiber, some call them the healthy Oreos.
- Power Crunch: Wild Berry Crème
Fresh berry flavors, with 13 g of protein to give you energy for a busy day.
Reduce daytime cravings and increase your energy with the most delicious protein bars, find them at Natures discount!
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Do Energy Bars Really Work
Whether energy bars work to boost your performance entirely depends on why youre eating them, when you eat them and what ingredients are used.
For athletes looking for carbohydrates to power their physical activity then yes, absolutely! Energy bars are by definition high in readily available calories and carbohydrates, which makes them great workout fuel.
If youre eating them purely as a healthy snack and hoping theyll make you fitter and healthier, they may contain more energy than your body requires at that moment and may not be the best choice.
What To Consider Before Buying Protein Bars
The best protein bar will not only taste great, but it should meet your daily dietary needs.
Whether your dietary needs are based on ingredients, macronutrients, or calories, were confident that theres a protein bar on the market that will match your wants and desires. When consumed mindfully, protein bars can be a great way to pack in extra protein.
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Best Healthy Protein Bar: Aloha Protein Bar
ALOHA organic protein bars are made with minimal ingredients, making them the healthiest protein bar option on our best protein bars guide. Packed with a blend of brown rice protein, pumpkin protein, cashew butter and natural flavors, ALOHA snack bars are almost entirely organic. Theyre also vegan-, soy-, gluten- and dairy-free, so they accommodate a wide variety of dietary needs. As a certified B Corp company, ALOHA benefits the community and environment as well, so you can feel good about buying their bars. The flavor options include Vanilla Almond Crunch, Lemon Cashew, Pumpkin Spice and Caramel Sea Salt.
The Wrong Protein Bar Could Contribute To Metabolic Issues
According to registered dietitian Trista Best speaking to Eat This, Not That!, the wrong protein bar is one that is high in added sugars. As a rule of thumb, that would include any protein bar that contains more grams of sugar than grams of protein. In addition to the fact that added sugars can cause blood sugar levels to spike , they may also contribute to your consuming more calories than your body actually needs, per Women’s Health. But there is also a big-picture reason why dietitians like Best advise seeking out protein bars with less sugar: Consuming excess sugar is associated with a higher risk of metabolic syndrome, which is a cluster of conditions that are known to increase your likelihood of diabetes, heart disease, and stroke, as well as fatty liver disease, gallstones, asthma, sleep apnea, polycystic ovarian syndrome, and even some forms of cancer, per Johns Hopkins Medicine.
Adding insult to injury, many of these sequelae can develop even in the absence of weight gain and even in the absence of consuming excess calories, according to a 2016 paper published in Critical Reviews in Clinical Laboratory Science. In other words, even if your sugary protein bar isn’t causing you weight gain, it may still be causing you metabolic harm that could come back to haunt you in various and potentially life-threatening ways.
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How Much Protein Should Your Ideal Bar Contain
Heres where things get a little interesting.
Most of us would probably assume that more is more, but this isnt the case with protein bars, or protein in general.
While the general consensus in the world of fitness and bodybuilders and even regular Jane health-conscious people is to guzzle down protein in whatever way we can get it, if thats your approach, you may be doing more harm than good, As discussed, the RDA is already accounting for a little extra protein than most of us probably needyou can think of those extra grams as a cushion, just to make sure youre good. So, if youre trying to eat more than the RDA, whether thats in the form of way-oversized chicken breasts for dinner or protein bars with 40 + grams of protein, youre going way overboard.
In terms of protein content, bars available at stores can vary widelysome contain less than 10 grams , while those on the higher end clock in around 40 grams. For a typical healthy woman who only needs around 45 grams of protein in an entire day, a bar that contains even 5-10 grams makes a great snack. Presumably, youll be eating several other meals and snacks throughout the day, which will easily provide the rest of the protein you need.
And if you make sure your diet includes a well-rounded selection of whole foods youre likely meeting the RDA for protein without even realizing it.