Protein bars are a staple in the health food aisle, but some have enough sugar that they could be called candy bars. With hundreds on the market, how can you tell which are good for you? From weight loss to energy, these snacks make big promises, and it can be hard to tell which are the real deal. Use this cheat sheet to help pick protein bars that live up to their name.
Protein Bar Ground Rules
Protein bars can be a healthy snack if you know what to look for on the label. When you reach for a bar, read the fine print and make sure it follows these four rules:
- It has at least 10 grams of protein.
- It has less than 15 grams sugar (the lower, the better!). Look for natural sources of sugar, such as fruit.
- It has less than 4 grams of fat – and no trans-fats allowed.
- It has less than 350 calories.
For Weight Loss
If you’re looking to lose weight, choose a protein bar filled with fiber. It’ll fill you up and help keep you regular. Try these if you want to slim down:
- Quest Bar Coconut Cashew: 17 grams of fiber
- Fiber One Chocolate Peanut Butter Meal Bar: 9 grams of fiber
If you want a burst of energy, reach for a protein bar stocked with healthy carbs. Aim for one with about 20 grams. Try one of these before your next workout:
- Vegasport Chocolate Saviseed: plant-based and gluten-free
- Zing Almond Blueberry
For a Snack
Protein bars can be a great on-the-go snack that will tide you over between meals. If you’re looking for a snack, make sure your bar has less than 200 calories and at least 4 grams of fiber. Try these the next time you need something to nibble on:
- Dark Chocolate Coconut Balance Bar
- Grab1 Cranberry Almond