Nutrition Bar Mania!
Nutrition bar/healthy bar/energy bar, call it what you want! They are bar-shaped food intended to boost your energy. They are a blessing for working people and for those on the run. Due to its small size, you can carry it in your bag and have as a quick snack. It is easy to incorporate in lifestyle, hence falls into the category of convenience food.
- What? It contains fat, protein, carbohydrate, and fortified vitamins and minerals. Nutrition bars were primarily meant for athletes, to give them instant energy and endurance for running.
- Various varieties of bars available in the market and some claim to be the replacement for meals too. Sugar-free bars available for diabetic and diet conscious person. The bars have an irresistible package, tastes good too and promises nutrition as well.
- Watch out for calories – Some bars might have cheap low-quality ingredients, synthetic vitamins and loads of additives and high in calories. In fact, some of them are accused of making false claims and subsequently proved by consumer forum. Most bars provide the quick rush of energy with an equally quick crash.
- Why choose? Before buying one, try to introspect your purpose for buying the product. Are you buying as a substitute for evening snacks, or a post-workout snack, or just to satiate your sweet cravings. Once you are clear with your purpose, then you can choose the right kind based on ingredients. Whatever be your reason, be careful not to choose the one with high calories (Not above 250). If you are a fitness freak, try pure protein bar (equal or above 15 gm protein).
- Good old chikki?? An interesting fact to notice here is, we Indians have been using energy bars, since ages. The famous chikkis are nothing but homemade energy bars. There are a number of healthy variation one can do. Sesame bars – Mix sesame seeds, chia seeds, sunflower seeds, and flax seeds. Heat Honey and peanut butter, until it melts. Now mix all the ingredients properly, with a wooden spatula. Transfer all the ingredients in a shallow pan and press with hands for the ingredients to stick together. Freeze them for 2-3 hours and then cut it to desired shapes.
- Similarly, you can make groundnut bars, cashew nut and almond bars, seeds and berries bars, dried oats and almond bars, fig and walnut bars. Apart from honey, one can also use date syrup, or melted organic jaggery as the binder, prune syrup etc.
The best option is homemade bars of course. Make them in good quantity, because they don’t get spoiled soon. However, if you are constantly on the go, read the ingredients carefully, use your wisdom and choose a healthy bar over a tasty bar. And definitely, don’t make it an excuse for skipping the gym. Stay healthy and stay blessed.