How many times while enjoying your favorite sport on the field have you felt that you are running out of fuel and perhaps could get something to help you keep going? Most people and mainly athletes rely heavily on energy bars as a quick fix when they need energy on the go and as a part of a runner’s diet. Energy bars have become a very popular meal replacement for all active people and also serves as a healthier snack for quick energy.
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In general there are two types of energy bar that apart from adding some extra calories, are either enriched with proteins, fats and carbohydrates in a balanced proportion or have only proteins and fats with no or very less carbs. The ones with all the three in a balanced proportion – proteins, carbs and fats are meant for quick boost of energy, especially for athletes and active people. The other one with proteins and fats are for people who take energy bars to lose weight and follow a low-carb diet.
Dietician Sheela Seharawat, also been recognized as the best dietitian in India, shares that there are benefits and as well drawbacks of having an energy bar and how these bars can be included as a part of our regular balanced diet.
The benefits to take advantage of:
One of the main benefit of these energy bars are that they are convenient and easy. These bars are easy to carry anywhere and be eaten anywhere and anytime. Also, these bars are good source of proteins without any cholesterol or saturated fats that you find in other protein sources. These bars are fortified with all essential minerals and vitamins, which makes them a healthy choice than any other food source or a quick fast meal.
Whatever an energy bar is called by – health bar, protein bar, snack bar or even a granola bar – they all are the same and does the same purpose. They all claim to provide you with nourishment that you need throughout the day to stay active and going. But, it is always better and wise to go through the label of any bar that you choose as these mat range from healthy and wholesome ones to the ones that are artificially sweetened and flavored and are also highly processed.
The disadvantages that you should know:
Even though these bars are enriched with vitamins and minerals, they can never replace a well-balanced and nutritious meal. Though fortified with essential vitamins and minerals, they do not have bioflavonoids and phyto chemicals that you find in fibrous fruits and vegetable and their benefits are not quite the same as natural food sources. Many of the energy bats available in the market also have hydrogenated or partially hydrogenated palm oil. This means that these bars have saturated fat and sometimes as high as 50% of the total fat content in them.
From the best dietitian point of view
Whatever these bars are made up of and the amount of energy it gives as a quick resource, they cannot be replaced with the richness of fresh foods and vegetables and other whole foods. If you really are interested in using these bars, they should be a part of a healthy and balanced diet and the diet as a whole. They can be used as a valuable pre and post workout snack and should be considered only as a snacks and not as a meal.
As per best dietitian in Delhi while choosing one for you ensure that you choose the ones that are very low in saturated fats and do not have any hydrogenated oil or palm oil. Read the label nicely before making your choice. Get the ones that have minerals and vitamins in them and if you are replacing these bars with your meal make sure that from time to time you sacrifice some of these nutrients in your meals.
The difference between an energy bar and energy drink
The major difference between the two is caffeine. Energy drinks have caffeine in them and a bar does not. Other differences apart from their physical state is in their flavor and taste. Bars comes in various flavor from fruit to peanut butter ones.
The energy bars are making waves and it is only a matter of time that these bars are now being sold in the market with different perspective. Now, these bars are everywhere and is being marketed as the perfect snack for all requirement. A quick and east to go snack, it helps fuelling you up throughout your much stressed day and even a compulsory addition to some particular diet.
Always remember that your health is your wealth and with poor health there will be no wealth left. So, always begin now to live healthy and save all the wealth you can. We can have all we desire and enjoy life to the fullest. A good opportunity like a energy bar can make all the difference!!