energy bars candy bars

Why Energy Bars Are NOT a Healthy Snack

by Kelley Herring on February 4, 2014

One of the most important services we provide here at Healing Gourmet is to help you identify the “health impostors” on grocery store shelves.

And they’re everywhere…

I’m talking about products promoted as “fat free”… that are full of sugar and artificial ingredients. I’m talking about products that claim to be “natural”… while sporting a list of ingredients that you need a chemistry degree just to pronounce.

Or what about products that put the word “healthy” in the name… as if that alone will make their artificial, Franken-foods magically good for you?

Energy Bars: Candy Bars in Disguise

But some of the greatest impostors are found in the “energy bar” aisle… or as they are sometimes called, health bars. The problem is that most of the nutrition bars out there are nothing more than junk food.

I’ve heard them described as “candy bars in disguise,” but the fact is that some of these health disasters are even worse than candy bars.

Take the “Slimfast” meal replacement bars, for example. Not only do they contain genetically modified soy, chemical flavors and hydrogenated oils (trans fat)... but their main ingredients are corn syrup and sugar!

And to think that these foods are marketed to people trying to improve their health and lose weight.

Do you see what we mean by “health impostors”?

Even Whole Food Energy Bars (like LaraBars) Are Metabolic Sugar Bombs

You should obviously avoid these kinds of bars. But even the organic, whole food bars might not be as wholesome as you hope for.

Although these bars usually don’t add refined sugar, they often use dates and other fruit fillings as their primary ingredient. That means these bars can still be loaded with sugar. In fact, two popular brands that I just looked at have an average of 20 grams of sugar in a small bar.

That’s half the amount of sugar in a can of Coke… and about the total amount of sugar you should be eating in a whole day!

And remember, when it comes to your metabolism sugar is sugar. It doesn’t matter whether it comes from a caramel-colored soda or a so-called “nutrition” bar.

But that doesn’t mean you should avoid all energy and nutrition bars. They can be a very filling and convenient snack. And fortunately, you can make homemade energy bars at home with just a few simple ingredients.


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About The Author

Kelley Herring, founder of Healing Gourmet, is a natural nutrition enthusiast with a background in biochemistry. Her passion is educating on how foods promote health and protect against disease and creating simple and delicious recipes for vibrant health and enjoyment.

Kelley Herring – who has written posts on Healing Gourmet.

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