Sometimes school gets in the way of everything important in life—especially eating. With demanding teachers and extracurricular, you may be too busy to sit down and replenish your brain and body with food. Luckily, you can temporarily feed yourself off of the nutrition bars Mercer’s P.O.D sells. These bars range from meal-replacement, to protein, to fiber fillers, to sugar-fests, so it’s best to know which one fits your needs the most.
Although nothing beats nutrition like a nice plate of whole, cooked foods, but if you don’t have time to cook or swing by the Farmer’s Market, here are the best and worst nutrition bars Mercer offers.
When looking at nutrition bars, stay away from too much sugar. Some of these bars have so much sugar that the nutrition bar is essentially a candy bar in disguise. An overconsumption of sugar leads to obesity and diabetes, according to Prevention.com. Not to mention, sugar can also cause premature wrinkling of the skin.
Based on sugar, fiber, and protein, here are the best and worst nutrition bars.
QuestBar: A latest edition to Mercer’s P.O.D products, Questbars have been ranked one of the best protein bars according to Bodybuilding.com. Each bar contains over 20 grams of protein and only 1 gram of sugar. To top it all off, Questbars are gluten free and have 14 grams of fiber. This bar ranks as one of the best bars.
Clif bars: Clif bars are an energy/protein bar and are marketed as organic. However, it has more sugar than a Hershey bar. 9 grams of protein. With brown rice syrup as the first ingredient, Clif bars contain a non-negligible amount of sugar (around 23 grams at least). If you want a sweet treat and cavities, Clif bars are the best candidates. Appropriate so, Clif bars are ranked one of the worst bars.
Nature Valley Protein Bars: These bars have about 10 grams of protein, 6 grams of sugar, and 5 grams of fiber. Although thinner, these bars offer more bang for your buck in terms of protein and fiber, as compared to Clif bars. And as a plus, these bars are also about 10 calories less.
Luna Bars are a kind of Clif bar and are marketed for women as gluten-free, non-GMO, and organic energy bar. With only 5 grams of sugar, it fairs better in comparison to original Clif bars. Luna bars have around 7 grams of protein and 3 grams of fiber. It’s a lighter snack with a vegan protein blend as the first ingredient (however it is most likely not free of GMO’s according to Wellandgood.com) and works as a nice snack. However, this is definitely not a meal-replacement bar.
Power Bars: Power Bars are mainly used for those involved in intense physical activity. These bars are marketed for energy bars, boasting around 230 calories. With 9 grams of protein, these bars are similar to Clif bars, and they also have around 20 grams sugar. Because of this, you’ll feel energized with the bars, but if you’re seeking nutrition, this isn’t the best way to go. Powerbars, as far as nutrition goes, rank as one of the worst bars.
MET-RX Big Collosal Brownie: Ever seen this protein bar before? It’s huge. It has almost 400 calories, 18 grams of sugar, 3 grams of protein, and 30 grams of protein. To top it all off, there is a glazing of sugar on the bar. Out of all these bars, the MET-RX is the only one marketed as an actual meal-replacement bar, which, from these nutrition facts, are completely justifiable. 30 grams of protein tops the charts on these bars, but at 18 grams of sugar, it’s not recommended to eat this every day, especially if you’re diet includes other sugary foods. This bar isn’t the best (due to sugar), but it isn’t the worst either (due to protein). Therefore, proceed with caution.