Friday, October 14, 2011

Have a Sweet Tooth? | Protein Bars vs. Candy Bars

Let's face it - no matter how much we focus on good eating habits, there will be those times we crave our favorite candy. For me, it's Red Vines or even an occasional Hershey's Special Dark.

You know those cravings - NOTHING else will take it's place. Eat all the carrot sticks in the world, won't satisify my cravings.

However, keeping everything in perspective - we still need to be mindful of our calories. Calories rule. They always have and they always will. It is the fuel for our body or the reason we won last year's Couch Potato Award at the office.

Like many athletes, I have a stock of sports nutritional products. Bars, gels, beans, etc.

The other day, I had one of those rare chocolate cravings. So, I went to my nutritional product stash (right next to the candy bars, of course) and thought, I will just eat a Protein Bar, instead of a candy bar. 

Then, I decided to compare labels.

This is what I discovered:

TOP:  Protein Bar  - BOTTOM:  Candy Bar

By Caloric comparison - if I am craving sweets - I should stick with the candy bar.

In fact, when I eat the candy bar, I often only eat HALF of the bar - but for some reason, when I eat the Protein Bar, I will eat the entire thing. In my mind, I am thinking "it's healthier - so I should eat it!"

While the ingredients are healthier - look at the calories!

Protein bars have their purpose - for training and race day. They are formulated for athletic events, not for everyday cravings. I LOVE, LOVE Protein Bars. I would never be without them - my favorites are PowerBar Performance.

  • Next time you have a chocolatey sweet tooth need - reach for the simple candy bar and see what the calories are vs your favorite protein bar.

  • Next time you are going out for a training run or race - ALWAYS a protein bar, never the candy bar.

(c) C. Ragsdale 2011
Celebrate Your Finish,

Charlene L. Ragsdale - Las Vegas, NV
Certified Sports Nutritionist, Running Coach & Public Speaker
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