What are the best protein bars? The short answer is: the ones made with natural, plant-based, whole-food ingredients.
Most protein bars market themselves as being great to take on the run, which they are - - but they often lack quality ingredients and real nutrients. When you take a snack with you on the go, you should be eating food that gives you long-lasting energy, keeps you full and satisfied and is loaded with the right amount of vitamins and minerals.
The conventional protein bars or granola bars found on the shelves of convenience stores and supermarkets are full of refined carbohydrates, sugars, preservatives and additives; yet, we don’t take the time to notice all of this because the bar is wrapped in a pretty package and fits oh so conveniently in our tote.
When searching for a protein bar, look for recognizable ingredients like nuts, seeds, fruit superfoods, and vegetable extracts and if there is sugar, make sure it is more of a natural sugar like raw honey, coconut palm sugar or fruit sweetened.
It’s important to take note of what type of protein is holding your bar together. The two most popular and in my opinion- unhealthy- forms of protein are whey (milk) and soy. Whey protein is usually derived from a heavily processed form of milk and we know that milk really does NOT do the body good (can lead to digestive distress, promotes several types of cancer growth, increases inflammation in the body.)
Soy protein is the most processed form of a soybean, so by the time it ends up in your bar, none of the actual vitamins and minerals are present in the bean - - plus, the soybean is the most genetically modified crop out there. Women should be especially careful about ingesting too much soy, as certain research suggests that soy contains estrogen promoters (which can lead to women-type cancers).
** Stick with bars that are made of foods you can actually see, foods that can be picked from a tree or soil and not foods made in a factory.
** Stay away from refined ingredients and sugars like corn, soy crisps, white rice, potato starch, corn syrup, corn starch, partially hydrogenated oils, maltose, sucrose, artificial sweeteners, caramel color, dextrose, cane juice, cane sugar, glucose, malodextrin, sorbitol and more!
** The more refined starches and sugars you eat, the more your body craves sugar and becomes inflamed. Inflammation leads to cancer, stroke and heart disease.
My top picks for bars that are held together with nuts/seeds and most are free of gluten/dairy/refined sugar:
1.) Raw Crunch Bar
2.) Raw Revolution Bar
3.) Earthling Organics Raw Food Bars
4.) Go Raw Bars
5.) Vega Bars
6.) The Good On Ya Bars