Protein blocks - are they good? | How to choose the best protein block

Protein blocks - are they good? | How to choose the best protein block

Protein blocks - are they good? | How to choose the best protein block
Protein blocks - are they good? | How to choose the best protein block

In just a few years,  protein bars  have gone from selling only in sports nutrition stores to supermarket shelves. Increasing demand for   protein- rich products has led to a large number of companies that used to produce pastries incorporating protein bars into their production.

Although some protein bars can be considered healthy, the generalization that all protein bars are good is a mistake.

This article describes the nutritional composition of protein bars and tips for choosing the best one. What is the difference between a regular protein block and a sugar-free one?

Protein bars, are they good?

The nutritional value of most brands of protein bars is usually not the best. Even sugar-free protein bars, while looking like the perfect product for the athlete, usually have unhealthy ingredients disguised in their composition.

From the nutritional value of protein blocks, their protein content clearly stands out. To achieve this value, manufacturers often add  whey protein  .

The problem with protein bars is in the coating. This is usually based on processed vegetable oils and fats, as well as a high content of flavorings, preservatives and  sweeteners  .

Protein blocks - ingredients

Protein bars are often high in  fructose  syrup. An ingredient that serves not only to sweeten and improve the taste, but also to extend the shelf life.

In addition, some brands of inexpensive protein bars tend to have a chocolate-like coating in the coating, imitating chocolate, which is usually high in  trans fat  .

In terms of caloric content, most protein bars differ slightly from regular chocolate.

The content of vitamins and minerals in protein bars is usually low. Glucose syrup, invert sugar or other simple carbohydrates are usually added   . The WHO recommends that a maximum of 10% of total calories come from this energy source. (5)

Nutritional value of ordinary protein bars (100g)

A nutrition table for 100 g of ordinary protein bars is described below:

Energy 375 kcal
Protein 32.5 g
Total fat 12.5 g
Carbohydrates 47.5 g
Total fiber 12.5 g
Total sugars 15 g
Calcium 200 mg
Iron 0.9 mg
Sodium 212 mg
Vitamin C 3 mg
Vitamin A 0 mg
Cholesterol 12

Nutritional table per 100 g protein bars. Source

Are sugar-free protein bars better?

Sugar-free protein bars replace sucrose by adding   sugar substitutes . The structure of the strip becomes less airy, and the taste is significantly flatter and more artificial. Also, some sugar-free protein blocks use  maltodextrin  . The inclusion of this carbohydrate is not recommended for weight loss.

In fact, the body reacts to maltodextrin in the same way as sugar. Although its composition is different, the  insulin index  is similar. For this reason, it is important to avoid these types of ingredients in a  diet for type 2 diabetics  .

Nutritional value of sugar-free bars (100 g)

Energy kcal 400
Protein g 32.5
Total fat g 17.5
Carbohydrates g Four five
Total fiber g 12.5
Total sugars g fifteen
Calcium mg 150
Iron mg 0.9
Sodium mg 175
Vitamin C mg 8.75
Vitamin A User interface 0
Cholesterol mg 12

Table of the nutritional value of the sugar-free protein bar. Source

Protein bars - when is it better to eat them?

Protein bars are recommended for before or after a workout, when there is no other option for natural foods such as protein intake. They will always be better than eating pastries and baked goods like donuts.

However, the use of protein bars as a major component of an athlete's diet is not recommended. In addition, its price is high compared to other  sports supplements  such as whey protein.

If the goal is to lose weight, there is simply no point in eating this type of food. The words of encouragement on the packaging of bars without added sugar are made to attract the attention of inexperienced consumers.

If you are a good buyer, you should read the ingredients and packaging of the product carefully and avoid glucose and fructose syrup. If you still decide to buy this product, choose the best quality, cheap protein bars are usually the worst.

How are protein bars made?

Like any other industrial food, protein bars have a long shelf life. Protein bar manufacturers use fats and carbohydrates such as  palm oil  and maltodextrin to extend them over time.

Palm oil is a cheap oil that has a firm consistency at room temperature and has a long shelf life. The main disadvantage of this oil - the imbalance between Omega 3 / Omega 6 fatty acids, which it causes in the body.

Remember that one of the ingredients in protein bars is whey protein. Product with lactose. Those with  lactose intolerance  should avoid protein bars.

The best protein bars

Choosing cheap protein bars can have negative health consequences. The price of this product is usually directly related to the quality of the ingredients used. Although the high price does not always guarantee better quality, it probably does.

A general rule for choosing the best protein bars is to keep your list of ingredients short. If possible, they do not contain palm oil or similar chocolate in their composition.

At Nutrition 360, we recommend organic protein bars. Because they not only do not allow the use of fertilizers and pesticides in processing. But they do not allow to include preservatives and synthetic products in the list of ingredients.


  • Sports protein bars are a high protein food.
  • Some protein bars are high in simple carbohydrates, as well as artificial preservatives and fats in their composition.
  • The best protein bars are those whose list of ingredients is short, and do not include palm oil and chocolate-like toppings.
  • Although the  importance of protein  cannot be denied in terms of nutrition, protein bars should only be used when better, high-protein foods are not available.


  1. Classic fruit muesli bar,  Source
  2. Replacement of nutrition, article in Wikipedia,  Source
  3. A brief history of space food sticks,  Source
  4. Nestle sells PowerBar,  Source
  5. Healthy food. Source