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How To Use Protein Bars To Reach Your Fitness Goals

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Life is busy, everyone knows that. Many people rely on fast food and unhealthy snacks when they are on the go, but that has that ability to quickly annihilate your fitness goals.

So how can you eliminate reaching for those unhealthy snacks to help ensure you can reach your fitness goals? The answer is a good protein bar.
The most important thing to know is that not all protein bar products are equal in their nutritional value, with some hitting sugar levels in the double digits. It is important to make sure you are reaching for a protein bar that is going to benefit you and not derail your efforts.  Many protein bars are no better than reaching for a sugary chocolate bar. Read on to find out exactly how to choose the right protein bar and use it to benefit your fitness goals.

Consider The Calories

The first thing you need to think about is the calorie count of the protein bar as well as what your caloric needs are. If you are on a fat loss diet, a 400-calorie protein bar isn’t going to be right for you.  When you are on a fat loss diet, you are limiting your calories to burn as much fat as you can, and it is important to make sure you are getting those calories from the right sources. Instead, you are going to want to reach for a protein bar that is on the lower end of the calorie spectrum, such as the one that is around 70 calories. However, if your goal is to build lean muscle and you are struggling to get enough calories into your body each day, a 400-calorie protein bar is going to help you achieve your goals.

Carbohydrate Count

The carbohydrate count of the protein bar is often just as variable as the calories are. If you are looking to lose fat, you are going to want to stick with a protein bar choice that has less than 30 grams of carbohydrates, depending on what your specific dietary needs are.  However, if you are using the protein bar right after a workout, the extra carbohydrates are good to help you repair your muscles.

Ingredients

What are the ingredients in the protein bar you are thinking about eating? If you are considering a protein bar that only has a handful of ingredients, you are on the right track to a good choice.  However, if the protein bar you are looking at has a long list of ingredients and most of them are ones you can’t identify, you should probably put it down and make a different choice.
Make sure that the ingredients that are in the protein bar you select are ones that are healthy. The proteins that are highest in amino acids are whey protein, calcium casemate, p-protein, brown rice, and hemp.

Soy protein is low in amino acids, and ultimately it is the amino acids that are going to help you to build and repair your muscles. Another ingredient you are going to want to consider is the sugar that is in your protein bar. Some sugar is okay. However, don’t choose the protein bar that has sugar as one of the first ingredients or has a high amount of sugar in it. High levels of sugar are going to undo all of the good things that a protein bar can do for you.

Carbohydrate To Protein Ratio

Depending on the protein bar, the protein and carbohydrate counts are going to be different. It is important to make sure that the bar you are choosing has the right ratio of protein to carbohydrate ratio.  The protein content in the bar is what makes any bar an actual protein bar. Therefore, it is important to make sure that you are getting more protein than you are carbohydrates.  If your goal is to lose fat, you are going to want a 2:1, or a 1:1 protein to carbohydrate ratio. However, to build muscle, or post workout, a ratio of 1:2 is going to benefit you more.

When Should You Reach For A Protein Bar?  marshmallow treat, protein bars, healthy eating, metabolism, fat to fit, fitness

Reaching for a protein bar at the wrong time can also result in you not being able to achieve your fitness goals. The best times of day to eat a protein bar are mid-morning, mid-afternoon, and after a workout. You don’t want to use protein bars to replace your meals, as they do not contain all of the nutrients you are going to need to get through the day. When used correctly, protein bars can add a huge benefit to your fitness goals. It is important to do your research though since it is easy to use protein bars incorrectly.

Eating a protein bar with the wrong ingredients, or eating it at the wrong time can result in you working against your fitness goals and struggling more than you have to.

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