ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel

Need Help Picking a Protein Bar? Here Are Some Tips

Updated on August 25, 2019

20 grams of protein, 40 grams…is 10 grams of fat too much? Should I even be eating protein bars at all? There are so many questions, and so many protein bars. Here are a few tips so you can spend more time lifting and less time picking a protein bar.

How Much Protein Do You Really Need?

Be aware of how much protein you need in a day. For your average Joe, a common dietary recommendation is to consume 0.8 grams of protein per kilogram of body weight. The recommended amount varies based on things like the amount of physical activity you do in a day. For example, the recommended consumption for athletes is 1.2 to 2 grams of protein per kilogram of body weight based on the position of The Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics, Dietitians of Canada, and the American College of Sports Medicine. This may mean eating roughly 1.4-1.8 grams/kg of protein per day for a strength training/power athlete, and for endurance athletes (shout to all our runners out there) roughly 1.2-1.4 grams/kg of protein per day. Based on these dietary recommendations, a way to calculate roughly how much protein you need, is to multiply your body weight (in kilograms) x 0.8 grams of protein/kg. The multiplier may change based on, for instance, the amount or type of physical activity that you do.

Exceeding these recommended ranges may not result in much benefit. Let’s take a 170lb (67 kilogram) male weight trainer as an example. If you multiple his weight, 67 kilogram, by 1.8, you get 120 grams of protein. Based on this formula, he likely needs roughly 120 grams of protein in a day. If he’s already getting the amount of protein that he needs, and consuming that protein at optimal times throughout the day (e.g., following a weight-training session), he may achieve minimal (if any) benefits from also consuming a protein bar. For individuals who are already meeting protein requirements, creatine may be an alternative option to help gain muscle mass.

Limiting Sugar Intake

In terms of sugar content, one recommendation it to start by looking at the sugar content and limit your options to bars that have 10 grams of sugar or less. This will help you limit your overall sugar intake and keep that lean frame. But some bars reduce sugars by using artificial sweeteners to make them taste good. Look for sucralose, aspartame or sugar alcohols (mannitol, sorvitol, xylitol) on the ingredients label. The effects of artificial sweeteners on human health are not well understood (the word is still out on whether artificial sweeteners are healthier than real sugar). They can also cause bloating and gastric distress, so it may be wise to avoid these ingredients.

Primary Protein Source and Other Factors to Consider

You should also be looking at the primary protein source. The most common protein sources are whey protein or soy. Its been debated for decades whether whey or soy protein has better muscle building effects, with some studies showing that soy is and others showing that whey is better. Other factors to consider include the number of ingredients (less is usually more), fiber (generally look for more than 4 grams).

Finally, let’s talk about the costs. There are a few good protein bars out on the market that are also affordable, but many come with a high price tag. I recommend looking for good options that are also available for bulk purchase at stores like Costco. Buying in bulk may help save a few dollars.

This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and is not meant to substitute for formal and individualized advice from a qualified professional.

© 2019 Gen Raz


    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment

    No comments yet.


    This website uses cookies

    As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

    For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at:

    Show Details
    HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
    LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
    Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
    AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
    Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
    CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the or domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
    Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
    Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
    Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
    Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
    ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)
    ClickscoThis is a data management platform studying reader behavior (Privacy Policy)