I've heard that shakes are "better" for you than bars? Is there any validity to this? If so, why?
I like to eat a high pro bar occasionally because of convenience.
Somewhat "better". The bars have a lot of fillers in them. A lot of sugar and most have HFCS(worst kind of sugar because it goes right to fat and can't be used for energy like normal sugar).
That makes sense about the sugar.
But they are just so easy to throw down my throat!
Most have sub par protein sources in them as well and are highly processed. The occasional protein bar won't hurt you but don't try to incorporate them into a daily regimen if its avoidable. Also some are higher quality than others. If I have to I like to try and get VPX 's Zero Impact bars.
When I have a three hour class and a 10 min break in between, I have a DeTour 30 gram protien bar (with 350 cals, 32g carbs, & 11g fat). They taste pretty good.
Most bars are crap, some aren't.
Generally I try and stay away from them because they tend to contain either crap fats and sugar alcohols or crap sugar. Lots of them have poor protein sources as well (take a look - 30g of soy concentrate is not the same as 30g of whey isolate)
Notable exceptions are those elev8 me bars (the only ingredients are fruit and whey protein isolate if i remember right) - they are amazing pre workout.
I also like Allmax's isoflex bars - they have 30g of protein from whey isolates, although they are high in sugar alcohols so stay away if you are sensitive to them.
like the other posters mentioned, the nutritional profile is actually pretty weak, a lot of them are no better than a snickers bar with some vitamins thrown in, really. They're typically more expensive too.
If you have time, experiment with some recipes and make your own! It really is not that hard, and then you can control the nutrients they contain, and if stored correctly, they stay good for a few days, so make a bunch twice a week.
I use a small amount of honey and or splenda for taste, oats/granola, almonds, cinamon, natty PB, flax, and raisins.
Shape'em then heat em up quick and they are done.
Have not made them in a while, might have to whip up a batch now that you brought it up.
Last edited by SMOKEPALADIN; 03-28-2008 at 01:12 PM. Reason: add content
Additionally, I only take protein supplements when I want the protein in me as soon as possible; i.e. when I wake up in the morning, or immediately after my workout. The rest of the time I'm eating whole foods. Bars can't be digested nearly as quickly as protein mixed in water.