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Which bar do I choose? What are Snack, Protein, Energy, or Meal Bars? A review of CocoChia, Greens Plus, Nutrobiotics Fruit, and

Posted Sep 21 2011 7:58pm

You want something quick and easy to have on hand for your family. Snack bars that are healthy, with whole food ingredients you can not only name but identify. There are many good well-known brands of snack, meal and energy bars out there including LARABAR,  Luna Protein, Clif MOJO, Clif Kid,Clif C,  Odwalla, Kashi, etc. So in this post I have reviewed a few lesser known bars that could be a great addition to your lunch boxes and pantries including products from CocoChia, Greens Plus, Nutrobiotics, and Just Great Stuff.

First lets look at the different types of bars:

  • Energy bars(aka power bars or sports bars): are great for before workouts or games. They are higher carb (the healthy ones like the ones I’ve listed will be from good sources like fruit or other whole foods) which keeps your energy levels going throughout your workout. (Example: Larabar)
  • Protein bars: Similar to an energy bar but higher in protein, (look for plant-based proteins like brown rice or pea) they are ideal for after a workout, especially weight lifting. (Example: Luna Protein or higher calorie like Clif Builder’s)
  • Snack bars: Look for ones with at least 3 g of fiber, from 100-200 calories, a few grams of protein and under 20 g of sugar (which should be fruit based or under 12 g if sweeteners other than fruit used. (Example: Kashi, Nature’s Valley, or Luna Protein)
  • Meal replacement bars: these are higher calorie bars (200-300) to give you energy and protein if you’re in a pinch or on the move and don’t have time for a regular meal. Watch out you don’t eat these as a snack bar unless you’re looking to gain weight. (Example: Clif Builder’s or the Original Clif Bar…but watch the sugar!)
Living Fuel CocoChia Energy Bar

http://www.livingfuel.com

Living Fuel was kind enough to share a few of their CocoChia Bars & CocoChia Snack Mix with me that they’ve promoted as high-energy, raw, healthy fats snack fuel with clean, all-natural, organic ingredients. The main ingredients in both are: Organic Raw Coconut, Organic Chia seeds, and their all natural sweetener, Therasweet, which includes an encapsulated Probiotic blend. The bar also has Organic chocolate , Organic Raw Almond Butter, and non GMO Brown Rice Protein. Click on the labels below to see total list and nutrition facts for both.

The bars really are a “sustained energy bar”, as it kept me full all afternoon. I ate one as a meal because I went straight from a meeting at school to the barn and wasn’t home till 4 in the afternoon. It successfully kept me full and energized from noon to 4 including a long, hot ride on sweet Arabella. Who now may think her name is CocoChia…yea, try not saying that all day. When you open the package you see a a bit of oil from the coconut, but remember that’s healthy medium chain fatty acids that the body easily metabolizes. (I.e. our bodies use it as energy and not stored fat).  The texture is a little grainy from the coconut but the bars taste exactly like the ingredients, Coconut & Chocolate…Yum. The snack mix is more a loose mixture of the coconut, chia seeds and their sweetened probiotics, but it is crazy tasty! They suggest sprinkling it on oatmeal or yogurt, which sounds good to me, but we ate it right out of the packet.


 

 


 

NutriBiotic Fruit Snax Energy or Snack bar

http://www.nutribiotic.com These taste just like a really good natural fruit leather and contain the nutritional equivalent of 2 pieces of fruit. The simple ingredient list includes fruit, natural fruit flavor and fiber extracted from the fruit and ascorbic acid (synthetic Vitamin C.). These are great for lunch boxes and all the flavors NutriBiotic kindly sent me to sample were tasty and on par with their whole food parents: Apple Apricot, Apple Raspberry, Apple Strawberry….(yeesh apple was busy).

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Greens Organics Amazon Chocolate Energy Bar Energy or Snack bar

http://www.greensplus.com

“Don’t be fooled by junk food disguised as health food. Greens Plus combines certified organic Green Foods with High-ORAC Superfruits, Dates, Almond Butter, Hemp Protein and Honey to produce the only cold-processed, alkaline-forming, organic energy bar. The Organic Energy Bar delivers simple carbohydrates, essential fatty acids, and biologically-complete protein to supply a steady stream of energy throughout the day. Perfect for athletes seeking an edge, students, travelers and children of all ages. Eat one bar as a healthy snack between meals, or two for a complete meal replacement.”


Greens + Organics Amazon Chocolate Energy Bar – 1.6 oz. (45 g)
Supplement Facts
Serving Size: 1 Bar (45 g)
Servings Per Container: 1
Amount Per Serving %DV*
Calories 190
Calories From Fat 70
Total Fat 8 g 12%
Saturated Fat 2.5 g 13%
Polyunsaturated Fat 1 g
Saturated Fat 3.5 g
Trans Fat 0 g
Cholesterol 0 g 0%
Total Carbohydrates 27 g 9%
Dietary Fiber 4 g 16%
Sugars 17 g
Protein 5 g
Calcium 40 mg 4%
Iron 2 mg 8%
Vitamin A (as beta carotene 100%) 1750 IU 35%
Vitamin B12 .25 mcg 4%
Vitamin C 5 mg 8%
Sodium 25 mg 1%
Potassium 200 mg 6%
+Daily Value Not Established.
**Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your diet values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.

Ingredients: Organic dates, Organic Amazon Chocolate (organic evaporated cane syrup, organic cocoa liquor, organic Amazonia cocoa butter, organic vanilla, sunflower lecithin) organic almond butter, organic honey, organic tapioca syrup, organic brown rice crisps (organic brown rice, organic brown rice syrup, sea salt), organic hemp protein, organic rice protein, Greens Plus Organic Superfood Blend (Organic barley grass, organic wheat grass, organic alfalfa grass, organic oat grass, organic Omega 3 Chia seed, organic broccoli, organic stevia leaf, organic red beet juice, organic stevia extract), Sea Vegetable Blend (organic spirulina, organic chlorella, organic dunaliella salina algae, organic Nova Scotia dulse), organic quinoa sprout powder, High-ORAC Superfruit Blend (organic AppleBoost, organic acerola berry juice, organic acai berry juice), mixed tocopherols (natural Vitamin E)

The Greens Plus and Just Great Stuff bars taste very similar and have similar nutrition and ingredient profiles including nutrient rich whole foods and covered in tasty dark chocolate. They taste a little like a green chocolate smoothie; the first bite you taste a spinachy green flavor that makes you say “interesting”, but the following bites the natural sweetness and delicious chocolatey goodness come through. I would love to hear what your family thinks of them so leave some comments below! Both were given free to me at my favorite local health-food store, Eden’s Marketplace in Gainesville. Thanks Peter, Janice and gang!

Just Great Stuff Organic Chocolate Dream Greens Energy or Snack bar

http://www.bettylousinc.com

 

  • ORAC Antioxidant Value of 21,700 (tested by credible laboratory, Brunswick Labs)
  • Organic Certified
  • Vegan
  • Gluten-Free
  • Fruits include: Dates, Raisins, Bananas
  • Freeze-dried Veggies: Carrot, Spinach, Kale, Broccoli Sprout (more info on this below)
  • Protein source: Organic Rice Protein & Cashews

“Organic chocolate meets healthy fruits and veggies in this unique bar. As an experiment one day we took our delicious Organic Fruit & Veggie bar and drenched it in rich, organic dark chocolate. The result was “dreamy!” Your mouth won’t know your eating whole fruits, nuts and freeze-dried organic veggies, but your body will! Enjoy one of these nutrient-rich bars today!”

Serving Size: 1 Bar (42 g)
Amount Per Serving %DV*
Calories 180
Calories From Fat 70
Total Fat 8 g 12%
Saturated Fat 2.5 g 13%
Trans Fat 0 g
Cholesterol 0 g 0%
Total Carbohydrates 23 g 8%
Dietary Fiber 2 g 8%
Sugars 16 g
Protein 5 g
Calcium 2%
Iron 8%
Vitamin A (as beta carotene 100%) 15%
Vitamin C 10%
Sodium 25 mg 1%
Iron 8%
**Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. 


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