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3 Questions to Ask Before Buying a Protein Bar

As you embark on your bridal nutrition journey, you'll start to notice just how deceptive product packaging and advertising can be. Many products claim to be healthy, when, in reality, they can be just the opposite.

Protein bars are a prime example. They can be a terrific snack, but for every genuinely healthy protein bar out there, you'll find numerous others that claim to be good for you, when, in fact, they're packed with calories. Ask yourself these questions before you snack on one after a workout.

1. Is It Really a Protein Bar?

Just because it says "protein" somewhere on the label doesn't mean it's a great source of protein. Check the nutrition label. If the bar you're looking at doesn't have around 10 to 15 grams of protein, put it back on the shelf. It's not worth the calories.

2. How Much Sugar Is in It?

Protein bars are often grouped with "energy" bars that claim to give your body a metabolic boost. This boost is often nothing more than a temporary sugar high. The energy you get from protein lasts a lot longer than a sugar rush. Make sure the sugar content (as in grams of sugar) is in the single digits.

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3. Is It Full of Good Fat or Bad Fat?

Not all fat is bad. All protein bars contain good fat and bad fat, but the levels of each can vary. Remember that saturated fat is bad fat. Look for a bar with more unsaturated fat content than saturated fat.

The Bottom Line Read nutrition labels. Be smart about what protein bars you eat and you'll have a healthy, energetic snack on your hands.

-- Doug Rice