I’m going to review several new healthy bars. The choices are growing and I’m always excited to taste the latest advances and new products.
What is each bar for?
Meal replacement, pre-/post-workout, weight loss, nutritional supplementation, or “because I’m hungry” are all common reasons to dive into one of these portable food bars. For more information on each, check out Vitarock.com’s product pages for specific nutritional information and ingredients. Links are below.
Apart from the convenience, bars make it very easy to incorporate into many diets and current eating trends, such as going alkaline, paleo-diet (meats, fish, nuts, leafy greens, regional veggies, and seeds), low carb, low-glycemic, high-protein, gluten-free, vegan (it’s mainstream now!), raw food, and organic/non-GMO.
Here is my what I look for when I go bar-shopping:
- Total calories
- Protein content (prefer more)
- Type of protein
- Sugar content
- Fibre content
- Sugar to fibre content ratio
- Are the ingredients "real" and pronounceable?
- Organic and non-GMO
The Bar Stars
Larabar – A straight up whole food snack that is better for you and more filling than potato chips or a chocolate bar with roughly the same amount of calories. This is a “fruit & nut bar”. With flavours like Cherry, Chocolate Chip (now vegan), and Coconut Cream, they are really satisfying. Larabar has set a very high bar (no pun intended) in all respects, with fair trade-sourced chocolate and being Non-GMO Project Verified and vegan. Note – there is a fairly high amount of naturally-occurring sugar, so these bars are quite delicious and have almost a dessert-quality sweetness and taste.
Larabar ALT – Just like Larabar, but with 10 g of pea protein. If you want to up your protein intake, try the three ALT flavours. Calorie count rises only slightly to about 220 calories.
Probar Fruition – Try this for a pre-workout, run or yoga for an instant energy boost. This is a “superfood bar” designed to deliver all the incredible nutrition value of chia seeds. For after exercise, a bar with more protein would be more suitable.
Amazing Grass Green Superfood – A superfood snack bar or even meal replacement, with ingredients like Wheat Grass, Alfalfa, Maca, Acai, Organic Broccoli, L. acidophilus, and Spirulina Algae! Get that more alkaline, cancer-fighting body tissue and get peace of mind. Amazing Grass Green Superfood bars are highly complex powerhouses of nutrition. Consume these to improve your health. Yes, they are all yummy!
The Simply Bar – Watching your weight? Even though all the bars reviewed here are all clean and good for you, The Simply Bar has fewer calories, very low sugar, high fibre (and therefore “low glycemic”) and very high protein (16 g). These are non-GMO soy-based and are more popular with women (but suitable for anyone).
Simply Whey – Banana Butterscotch tastes like drinking a shot of Bailey’s Irish Cream, in my opinion – a very good thing! Guys (and gals), here's a soy-free Simply Bar! With the amazing stats of the Simply Bar plus 15 g of whey protein. Have this bar after exercise.
Elevate Me – Low in fat, high in protein. Moderate to high sugar from all the fruit packed into these. 16 g of whey protein. Chewy, and very satisfying when you’re really hungry. Ideal before or during exercise when you need power!
ProBar Meal – This is for meal replacement. Eat this when there’s no time to prepare a meal. 350 calories when lots of fibre and a well-balance macronutrient profile will keep you sustained for hours. Bodybuilders, here’s a great way to build up to your 5 to 7 meals per day. If you’re watching your weight, here’s your lunch or after work meal.
ProBar CORE –Cyclist, weightlifters, athletes – this bar is for you. 20 g of non-GMO soy protein puts this at the top of the chain as far as protein bars go. Moderate calorie count (around 300 calories) will sustain you during strenuous activities too. Very tasty, just like a chocolate bar. Hard to keep these in stock!
Taste of Nature – Low-sugar, low-to medium calories, and you can see the nuts and seeds that these bars are made of. An excellent snack item and smarter alternative to junk food!
Solo GI – “Energy that sustains”. This is another performance-oriented bar for active people. They are engineered to have low-glycemic index scores. These bars will not spike your blood sugar or lead to weight gain. I recommend these bars for midday snacking or for pre-workout. Around 200 calories, SOLO has a great profile, which includes highly absorptive whey protein. Very fresh and zesty flavours.
Hope you enjoyed bar-hopping with me! Thanks for reading.