I bet if you tried really hard right now you could name about 10 brands of protein bars. And those are just the ones that come to mind! There are a ton of bars out there, both in retail stores and from direct-to-consumer brands like ViBE.
Before I started ViBE, I didn’t quite realize the enormous differences between different protein bars. They’re not created equal, and I think it’s worth mentioning here a few key things you’ll want to look for if you’re wanting more from your protein bar than just good taste:
1. Low Carbs
Carbs, yummy carbs. They’re delicious, sure, and they have a way of amping up the flavor. That’s why mediocre protein bars are loaded with ‘em. If you love carbs and don’t mind having your protein bars packed with them, then no harm no foul. But a protein bar that’s actually good for you and doing your health a favor shouldn’t be going above 25g of carbs, especially if it’s in the 200-250 calorie range.
2. No Artificial Ingredients
Artificial ingredients have a ton of benefits — but they usually benefit the business, not your health. They’re cheaper and extend the shelf life of a product so businesses can cash in on producing larger quantities at a lower price.
At ViBE, we put nothing artificial into our bars, ever. Every bar is made with real ingredients you’ll recognize and can pronounce, because that’s how a good protein bar that’s good for you should be made.
Also be mindful of artificial sweeteners that end in “tol”. Xylitol and Maltitol especially. Maltitol is a laxative in higher doses and a lot of brands will load up on this because it is cheaper to use than natural sugar alternatives such as monk fruit extract and stevia.
3. Fat and Sugar Content