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Clif bars healthiness?

post #1 of 29
Thread Starter 
I've been eating Clif bars for a quick energy boost while skiing lately. Today I was bored after finishing one and still haven't reached end of lift, so I started reading the label.

So essentially a Clif bar is made of syrup and crushed soy beans. Granted they taste better than most/all of the protein bars on the market, which I swear are made of old leather shoes and dirty socks. But I can't help but to wonder, would it be better (both energy and healthiness) if I were to switch to plethora of other bars that are made of actual whole nuts/grain and fruits?
post #2 of 29

Pro Bar makes some tasty options.  I personally grew a little tired of Clif Bars.  Are they any better for you?  I dunno, but at least it's something different and relatively healthy.

post #3 of 29

Or even better... make them yourself ;) They taste better, as you put there what you like and not what someone else thought you might like, you know what it's in there, which means they are much healthier then most of chemicals you get in production ones, they are just as "powerful" as those from store, they are cheaper and it takes exactly 20mins to make whole batch ;)

post #4 of 29
There is nothing wrong with some simple sugars-especially if you're actively exercising unless you are on a specific diet to lose weight. Go ahead try natural bars like the kind bar or any of the others or just pure nuts and fruits trail mix. They're better for you and easily available, but may not provide the same energy.

Cliff bars were originally intended for endurance athletes where not getting enough calories was the problem, and being calorie deficient. So if your intention is to ensure you don't bonk out, 300 calories via some processed stuff is an ends to get a mix of fast and slow energy into your body asap and then last awhile. If you feel like falling asleep on the lifts then maybe you need some sugar in you.

Gatorade or "electrolytes" is basically salts and sugar in water. Yet thats labelled sports drink and not much better than soda. So along the same lines, You shouldn't be drinking gatorade just as a beverage with meals or as a meal replacement. But if you're bonking out dousing your muscles in sugar will help keep you going.
Edited by raytseng - 3/25/15 at 1:48am
post #5 of 29

Recently having had my son go on a Modified Atkins Therapy to control seizures it is interesting to see the difference the elimination of sugars from the diet actually make.  The hardest part is making up the calories as he is an athlete and weight loss is not the desired goal.

 

One of the side effects is that you become more alert on this diet so much so that he is a different person and we have yet to remove any of the seizure control drugs that dope him up.  Can't wait to see when that happens.

 

As bad as this sounds it appears that sugars and carbs are not as good for you as one is lead to believe and that a low carb diet might actually be better for you.  These sugar snacks while providing instant energy do more harm than good long term.

 

Based on what I'm seeing, more importantly witnessing and what I've read I think that I may have to rethink the attraction of energy bars and commercial sport drinks along with sugars in my diet.

 

For those that are interested:

 

 http://www.charliefoundation.org/

 

http://authoritynutrition.com/10-disturbing-reasons-why-sugar-is-bad/

 

I know this is going to put people at opposite sides of the fence :snowfight 

post #6 of 29
Quote:
Originally Posted by oldschoolskier View Post

a low carb diet might actually be better for you.

That depends on your metabolism and what you're doing. I used to be a pretty serious runner when I lived in Denver, running 4-5 miles daily with often much longer runs on weekends. I'm was stuck at about 145 pounds and wanted to get to 140 so I put myself on a low carb high protein diet. In less than a week I couldn't even run 4 miles two days in a row. I scrapped that plan and decided to forget that extra five pounds.
post #7 of 29
Quote:
Originally Posted by mtcyclist View Post


That depends on your metabolism and what you're doing. I used to be a pretty serious runner when I lived in Denver, running 4-5 miles daily with often much longer runs on weekends. I'm was stuck at about 145 pounds and wanted to get to 140 so I put myself on a low carb high protein diet. In less than a week I couldn't even run 4 miles two days in a row. I scrapped that plan and decided to forget that extra five pounds.

 

As I stated earlier this is not intended as a weight loss diet in my sons case.


As to your loss of energy,  you may have spiked your ketones and that is bad thing, one of the signs is Unusual Fatigue or Lethargy.  In your case a few more carbs may all that was required to achieve your goal.  Any ketogenic diet does require some getting used to as your body switches from a sugar burning system to a fat burning system.  During this switch it is not uncommon to see what you are describing (or so we have been told) along with some other symptoms.  Don't forget you body was addicted to sugar as its fuel source.

 

As a warning.....true ketogenic diets carry serious health risks. As such any diet such really shouldn't be attempted without proper supervision and I'm going to assume that you did this with doctor supervision.  (Go with me on this one ;))

 

However, reduced sugars may be a good thing from an overall stand point even without going into a ketosis state is the point, not to lose weight or to control seizures, just for other health benefits.

 

 

See.....one side or the other :snowfight.

post #8 of 29

Quest bars. No simple sugars in them and packed with protein. They are like 3$ a piece though 

post #9 of 29
Quote:
Originally Posted by lonewolf210 View Post
 

Quest bars. No simple sugars in them and packed with protein. They are like 3$ a piece though 

 

 

Something that we had to learn when getting our son on the diet was take a course to read these labels and understand what they are actually saying, and even then the information is spotty at best.


Sorry to burst your bubble lonewolf210, all have sugars.  For example Banana Nut....Total Carbs 25g, Fiber 16g, Net Carbs (25-16) 9g  They claim 5g which is wrong.   Additionally they list Sugar 2g and Erythritol 4g (which is a sugar alcohol that counts as a sugar) so net sugars are (2+6) 8g so 1g is missing somewhere.

 

What is important to understand that Net Carb count is what drives the sugar value from a diet stand point.  For sake of argument 1g of Fiber cancel 1g of Carb.  However, it has been explained to us that it is a guideline and depending on an individuals metabolism and the fibers involve this may vary and based on results this is adjusted accordingly.

 

One of the things that we learned in the course is that even though we think we are getting all of the information there is a lot of marketing hype (and partial truths) in this very lucrative market.

 

Be forewarned read the label and understand what is really being provided (at least to the best of the information that you can find) 

 

BTW this was not intended to suggest one product is better than another, but just to bring the information to the fore front.

post #10 of 29
Quote:
Originally Posted by oldschoolskier View Post
 

 

 

Something that we had to learn when getting our son on the diet was take a course to read these labels and understand what they are actually saying, and even then the information is spotty at best.


Sorry to burst your bubble lonewolf210, all have sugars.  For example Banana Nut....Total Carbs 25g, Fiber 16g, Net Carbs (25-16) 9g  They claim 5g which is wrong.   Additionally they list Sugar 2g and Erythritol 4g (which is a sugar alcohol that counts as a sugar) so net sugars are (2+6) 8g so 1g is missing somewhere.

 

What is important to understand that Net Carb count is what drives the sugar value from a diet stand point.  For sake of argument 1g of Fiber cancel 1g of Carb.  However, it has been explained to us that it is a guideline and depending on an individuals metabolism and the fibers involve this may vary and based on results this is adjusted accordingly.

 

One of the things that we learned in the course is that even though we think we are getting all of the information there is a lot of marketing hype (and partial truths) in this very lucrative market.

 

Be forewarned read the label and understand what is really being provided (at least to the best of the information that you can find) 

 

BTW this was not intended to suggest one product is better than another, but just to bring the information to the fore front.


Well everything has sugar... It's what your body breaks pretty much everything into but there is difference in simple vs complex sugars. At least that's my understanding, I'm sure you know much more about it.

post #11 of 29
Quote:
Originally Posted by jzmtl View Post

I've been eating Clif bars for a quick energy boost while skiing lately. Today I was bored after finishing one and still haven't reached end of lift, so I started reading the label.

So essentially a Clif bar is made of syrup and crushed soy beans. Granted they taste better than most/all of the protein bars on the market, which I swear are made of old leather shoes and dirty socks. But I can't help but to wonder, would it be better (both energy and healthiness) if I were to switch to plethora of other bars that are made of actual whole nuts/grain and fruits?


After doing some research I switched to Lara bars and Think Thin.  Lara bars are a little tastier but fairly healthy in comparison to other supplement options. 

http://www.larabar.com/products/larabar

I really like the Peanut Butter one for a quick shot of protein 

post #12 of 29

One every once and a while won't kill you.

 

Aspen's sponsored by Cliff Bar and they give the small ones away.  I've only eaten a few this year, but always have one in my jacket pocket and a couple in my backpack,  JIC.

They last a lot longer than Cutie's. You don't want to find one of those in your pocket next year. 

post #13 of 29
Quote:
Originally Posted by lonewolf210 View Post
 


Well everything has sugar... It's what your body breaks pretty much everything into but there is difference in simple vs complex sugars. At least that's my understanding, I'm sure you know much more about it.

 

Just about everything :(, which is the point that we get way more sugar than we think, and even more so from man made sources (energy bars no matter how they are labelled, among lots of other sources).

 

Back to the original question are energy bars good for you? I'm beginning to think maybe not on a regular basis (and they can taste really good and be addictive and consumed more than we think) but on occasion I don't know :dunno.

 

BTW I like energy bars too :nono: (shame on me).

post #14 of 29

On the subject of sugars, I've switched my Camelbak from Gatorade to Endurolytes Fizz.  I tried Nuun, but the high sodium gave me headaches.

 

When I actually want calories, I use Clif Builder Bars.  They have more protein, but are certainly processed and filled with sugar.  I should probably switch to Larabar.  The cashew cookie ain't bad.

 

I don't know about the rest of you, but I'm finding that skiing doesn't burn quite as many calories as those "mountain sized" meals seem to contain.

post #15 of 29
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Trekchick View Post


After doing some research I switched to Lara bars and Think Thin.  Lara bars are a little tastier but fairly healthy in comparison to other supplement options. 
http://www.larabar.com/products/larabar
I really like the Peanut Butter one for a quick shot of protein 

I think I've seen those in stores, will try them once I finish my current box of Clif bar.
post #16 of 29

I switched from Cliff bars to Kind bars for morning tea on ski days.  Kind bars are mostly nuts with not much added sugar:

 

A typical Kind bar has 7g protein, 3g fiber, and only 5g of sugar.  A typical Cliff bar has 9g of protein, 4g of fiber, and 22g of sugar (total carbs is 42g!)

post #17 of 29

42g carbs is still only 164kcal, I can wash that down with slightly sweetened tea and still be under the 240kcal/hr bloodstream absorption limit.     Heck, I can have a Clif bar and tuna jerky and slightly sweetened tea without going over.

The one thing I really don't want is oil and fat so I generally stay away from the nut bars.    My liver has plenty of lipids to convert to fuel already.        Eating more would be about as useful as topping off a diesel tank when the fuel lines are gelled up.
 

post #18 of 29
Quote:
Originally Posted by Walt View Post
 

I switched from Cliff bars to Kind bars for morning tea on ski days.  Kind bars are mostly nuts with not much added sugar:

 

A typical Kind bar has 7g protein, 3g fiber, and only 5g of sugar.  A typical Cliff bar has 9g of protein, 4g of fiber, and 22g of sugar (total carbs is 42g!)

....and less ingredients. 

One of the things that Kind and Lara promote is a minimal list of ingredients. 

I think Lara says 9 ingredients total. 

post #19 of 29
Quote:
Originally Posted by Trekchick View Post
 

....and less ingredients. 

One of the things that Kind and Lara promote is a minimal list of ingredients. 

I think Lara says 9 ingredients total. 

 

A max of 9 ingredients, most flavors come in less.  For example, the Cashew Cookie flavor Lara Bars have only 2 ingredients, cashews and dates.  That's it.

post #20 of 29
Quote:
Originally Posted by jaobrien6 View Post
 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Trekchick View Post
 

....and less ingredients. 

One of the things that Kind and Lara promote is a minimal list of ingredients. 

I think Lara says 9 ingredients total. 

 

A max of 9 ingredients, most flavors come in less.  For example, the Cashew Cookie flavor Lara Bars have only 2 ingredients, cashews and dates.  That's it.


Perhaps the 9 I remember is a commitment to a maximum of 9 ingredients.:dunno

I like to read ingredients I can pronounce and I like it when the list is small. 

post #21 of 29

Hmm, that tablespoon of nutmeg only has 30 calories and  minimal carbs.    :D:eek
 

post #22 of 29

No evil white death in my tea and coffee/espresso????

 

 

I'd rather die. 

post #23 of 29
Clif Bars are a treat. They taste wonderful. Enjoy the decadence. White chocolate and macadamia, mmmm! Don't over think - or overindulge.

Eric
post #24 of 29
Quote:
Originally Posted by cantunamunch View Post
 

42g carbs is still only 164kcal, I can wash that down with slightly sweetened tea and still be under the 240kcal/hr bloodstream absorption limit.     Heck, I can have a Clif bar and tuna jerky and slightly sweetened tea without going over.

The one thing I really don't want is oil and fat so I generally stay away from the nut bars.    My liver has plenty of lipids to convert to fuel already.        Eating more would be about as useful as topping off a diesel tank when the fuel lines are gelled up.
 

Side note/question: They make tuna jerky?:eek where can I get some?

post #25 of 29
Quote:
Originally Posted by cantunamunch View Post
 

Hmm, that tablespoon of nutmeg only has 30 calories and  minimal carbs.    :D:eek
 


Just take like 5 tablespoons and your next 48 hrs will be quite interesting as well. Maybe not safe for skiing though... 

post #26 of 29
Quote:
Originally Posted by lonewolf210 View Post

Side note/question: They make tuna jerky?eek.gif  where can I get some?

What happened when you entered "tuna jerky" in Google?

wink.gif
post #27 of 29

I can't eat a big lunch and ski afterwards so my go to is 2 or 3 Larabars over the course of the day. The cashew has 2 ingredients, cashews and dates.  The PBJ has 4, Dates, peanuts, unsweetened cherries, salt. Apple pie has 6, dates, almonds, unsweetened apples, walnuts, raisins, cinnamon. They average 220 calories, ~110 in fat.

 

It doesn't hurt that they frequently go on sale at my coop for 90 cents a bar.

 

I've seen salmon but not tuna jerky. If I'm feeling rich and decadent I'll get the occasional Tanka bar, made mostly from buffalo and cranberries.

post #28 of 29

I make my own: the recipe is on the box of raisins.  I put in the good stuff and leave out the bad stuff.  A batch from an 8 X 8 in. pan takes about 30 minutes. 

post #29 of 29

Crudemeister try this http://www.nomeatathlete.com/homemade-energy-bar-recipe/ ;) For last few years I'm baking them this way and with a bit of experimenting you get really good tasting stuff :)

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