Monday, March 5, 2012

Health Advice: Energy Bars

Q: My life is always on the go.  I have a family and travel often which means I don't always get time to sit down for a meal.  Is it okay to use an energy bar to replace a meal such as lunch if I'm time crunched? 

A: Once in awhile it can be okay (so long as there is proper nutritional value), but try not to make this habit.  Some energy bars are really just "grown up" candy bars with sometimes up to 300 calories and plenty of fats or sugar.  Make sure your choice has 150 calories or less; less than 2g of saturated fat; less than 15g of sugar; at least 3g of fiber; and at least 5g of protein.  Also make sure you read and understand the ingredient list.  The main ingredients (ones listed at the start) should say soy, whole wheat or brown rice.  Less ingredients= better!  Try to make it more of a complete meal by adding in a piece of fruit/veggie or string cheese.

Good choices: Kashi Dark Mocha Almond Chewy Granola Bar, Toasted Nuts 'N Cranberry Luna Bar, Cliff Honey Oat Granola Bar, Kashi Pumpkin Pecan Layered Granola Bar

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