Melinda, A fooducate community member, asks:
I do a job that is very physically demanding, so to keep my energy up and hunger down, I eat a smores Pure Protien bar every morning on first break. Since I have been reading your blog, I have become an ingredient watcher and I’m wondering just how good/bad those bars really are? There is a LONG list of ingredients….
We checked out the product, by looking it up on Fooducate’s iphone app.
Sorry Melinda – not such a great choice…
What you need to know:
The ingredient list is long! Over 60 ingredients:
Marshmallow Cream Layer (Maltitol, Milk Protein, Sorbitol, Palm Kernel Oil, Nonfat Dry Milk, Lecithin, Salt, Natural Flavor, Calcium Carbonate), Chocolate Coating (Maltitol, Fractionated Palm Kernel Oil, Whey Protein Concentrate, Cocoa (processed with alkali), Calcium Carbonate, Natural Flavor, Soy Lecithin, Sucralose), Hydrolyzed Collagen, Protein Blend (Whey Protein Hydrolysate, Whey Protein Isolate), Glycerin, Soy Crisps (Soy Protein Isolate, Tapioca Starch, Salt), Maltitol Syrup, Water, Natural Flavor, Marshmallow Pieces (Sugar, Corn Starch, Fructose, Soybean Oil, Corn Syrup Solids, Natural Flavor, Salt, Soy Lecithin), Milk Chocolate Drops (Sugar, Whole Milk Powder, Chocolate Liquor, Cocoa Butter, Milk Fat, Soy Lecithin, Natural Vanilla Flavor), Canola Oil, Peanut Flour, Calcium Carbonate, Vitamin and Mineral Blend (Ascorbic Acid, Tricalcium Phosphate, d-Alpha Tocopheryl Acetate, Niacinamide, Zinc Oxide, Copper Gluconate, d-Calcium Pantothenate, Vitamin A Palmitate, Pyridoxine Hydrochloride, Thiamin Mononitrate, Riboflavin, Folic Acid, Biotin, Potassium Iodide, Cyanocobalamin), Salt, Sucralose, Soy Lecithin, Milk Protein Isolate, Wheat Germ, Almond Meal.
This is a very sweet bar. It has a combination of artificial sweetener and sugar alcohols. The amount of suagr alcohols is enormous (18 grams) – this could cause stomach discomfort, bloating, and gas.
We’ve marked some ingredients of interest:
Hydrolyzed Collagen is an MSG-like additive used to enhance the flavor.
The fractionated oil is an attempt to solidify oil without creating transfat. But the result is 5 grams of saturated fat (25% of the daily value). Here’s how it’s made: Oil is heated and then cooled. During the cooling, the oil is separated into “fractions” based on melting point. The fraction with the higher melting point is then used. It also has more saturated fats.
Yes, there is a gargantuan amount of protein in here – 30 grams is half of your daily need. But ask yourself if soy protein isolate and whey protein isolates are the optimal sources at such a large percent of your daily amount. There is no shortage of protein sources in the American diet.
Basically the manufacturer took artificial sweeteners, mixed them with bulking and emulsifying additives, then added vitamins and minerals. Fake Food.
What to do at the supermarket:
There are plenty of bars out there with a much shorter ingredient list. If you want more protein from real food – look at Greek yogurts, hard boiled eggs, and even some nuts and seeds.