3 Tips for Picking a Protein Bar

Protein bars are convenient but not always as healthy as they seem. There are a few important things I glance at before I choose a bar. The first thing on the label that I look at is carbohydrate content, but a higher number is not always worse. The amount of fiber and sugar ratio is very important. If most of the carbohydrates come from fiber, that’s a good clue that the bar is high quality. A pretty easy way to look at this is total carbohydrates minus fiber. A lot of popular protein bars are loaded with sugar and this can be seen in the carbohydrate content. However, even if the sugar is low, watch out for sugar alcohol content, which can cause some people digestive issues. Grams of protein vary widely, but I generally look for something with more protein than carbohydrates (minus fiber). About 15-20 grams is a good amount of protein. I’ll look at the total calorie count last since I’m primarily concerned with protein and carbs. However, I tend to avoid eating any bars over 250 calories since I’ve noticed that the higher calorie bars tend to run high on sugar and processed vegetable oils.

dr. uruj kamal

dr. uruj kamal

Dr. Uruj Kamal is a second year resident in Psychiatry at Baystate Medical Center/Tufts University School of Medicine. A Stony Brook native, she enjoys combining her knowledge of mental health and awareness with her passion for health, fitness and beauty. In her spare time, enjoys fashion, kayaking on West Meadow Beach, and creating westernized-Asian recipes.