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Are Meal Replacement Bars Actually Healthy?

Are Meal Replacement Bars Actually Healthy?

Choosing a clean-ingredient nutrition bar could replace a nutritious meal

Reaching for a healthy nutrition bar when you are running around could save your appetite.

We lead busy lives. Some nutrition bars have the same nutritional value as a candy bar, so best not replace a healthy, wholesome meal with sugar. However, every once in a while, meal replacement bars are a perfect healthy substitute and better than eating nothing.

Click here for the Healthiest and Unhealthiest Nutrition Bars slideshow.

When choosing the best meal replacement bar, start by checking the label. You want to know the ingredients in addition to how much fat, protein, and carbohydrates the bar contains. Nutrition bars such as Larabars and KIND bars are perfect for a snack, but they do not necessarily have enough protein to replace an entire meal. However, bars such as ALOHA protein bars, which have 18 grams of protein, and Quest bars, which have 20 grams of protein, are perfect as a meal replacement. When in doubt, reach for whole foods, but meal replacement bars are beneficial every once in a while.


16 Healthy, Homemade Protein Bar Recipes

Check the packaging of many protein bars and you'll find a list of ingredients that looks like it belongs in a science experiment. Save the extra -ols and isolates for the lab and make these homemade protein bars in your own kitchen instead. These delicious bars are packed with protein (instead of sugar!) to give you hours of energy without the sugar-related slump mid-afternoon. Whip up a batch this weekend for a week's worth of snacks that will keep you full and focused—and much more lean than your usual vending machine pick. Many of the recipes below call for protein powder you can use your favorite, but we highly recommend first checking out our exclusive guide to the best and worst protein powders.


16 Healthy, Homemade Protein Bar Recipes

Check the packaging of many protein bars and you'll find a list of ingredients that looks like it belongs in a science experiment. Save the extra -ols and isolates for the lab and make these homemade protein bars in your own kitchen instead. These delicious bars are packed with protein (instead of sugar!) to give you hours of energy without the sugar-related slump mid-afternoon. Whip up a batch this weekend for a week's worth of snacks that will keep you full and focused—and much more lean than your usual vending machine pick. Many of the recipes below call for protein powder you can use your favorite, but we highly recommend first checking out our exclusive guide to the best and worst protein powders.


16 Healthy, Homemade Protein Bar Recipes

Check the packaging of many protein bars and you'll find a list of ingredients that looks like it belongs in a science experiment. Save the extra -ols and isolates for the lab and make these homemade protein bars in your own kitchen instead. These delicious bars are packed with protein (instead of sugar!) to give you hours of energy without the sugar-related slump mid-afternoon. Whip up a batch this weekend for a week's worth of snacks that will keep you full and focused—and much more lean than your usual vending machine pick. Many of the recipes below call for protein powder you can use your favorite, but we highly recommend first checking out our exclusive guide to the best and worst protein powders.


16 Healthy, Homemade Protein Bar Recipes

Check the packaging of many protein bars and you'll find a list of ingredients that looks like it belongs in a science experiment. Save the extra -ols and isolates for the lab and make these homemade protein bars in your own kitchen instead. These delicious bars are packed with protein (instead of sugar!) to give you hours of energy without the sugar-related slump mid-afternoon. Whip up a batch this weekend for a week's worth of snacks that will keep you full and focused—and much more lean than your usual vending machine pick. Many of the recipes below call for protein powder you can use your favorite, but we highly recommend first checking out our exclusive guide to the best and worst protein powders.


16 Healthy, Homemade Protein Bar Recipes

Check the packaging of many protein bars and you'll find a list of ingredients that looks like it belongs in a science experiment. Save the extra -ols and isolates for the lab and make these homemade protein bars in your own kitchen instead. These delicious bars are packed with protein (instead of sugar!) to give you hours of energy without the sugar-related slump mid-afternoon. Whip up a batch this weekend for a week's worth of snacks that will keep you full and focused—and much more lean than your usual vending machine pick. Many of the recipes below call for protein powder you can use your favorite, but we highly recommend first checking out our exclusive guide to the best and worst protein powders.


16 Healthy, Homemade Protein Bar Recipes

Check the packaging of many protein bars and you'll find a list of ingredients that looks like it belongs in a science experiment. Save the extra -ols and isolates for the lab and make these homemade protein bars in your own kitchen instead. These delicious bars are packed with protein (instead of sugar!) to give you hours of energy without the sugar-related slump mid-afternoon. Whip up a batch this weekend for a week's worth of snacks that will keep you full and focused—and much more lean than your usual vending machine pick. Many of the recipes below call for protein powder you can use your favorite, but we highly recommend first checking out our exclusive guide to the best and worst protein powders.


16 Healthy, Homemade Protein Bar Recipes

Check the packaging of many protein bars and you'll find a list of ingredients that looks like it belongs in a science experiment. Save the extra -ols and isolates for the lab and make these homemade protein bars in your own kitchen instead. These delicious bars are packed with protein (instead of sugar!) to give you hours of energy without the sugar-related slump mid-afternoon. Whip up a batch this weekend for a week's worth of snacks that will keep you full and focused—and much more lean than your usual vending machine pick. Many of the recipes below call for protein powder you can use your favorite, but we highly recommend first checking out our exclusive guide to the best and worst protein powders.


16 Healthy, Homemade Protein Bar Recipes

Check the packaging of many protein bars and you'll find a list of ingredients that looks like it belongs in a science experiment. Save the extra -ols and isolates for the lab and make these homemade protein bars in your own kitchen instead. These delicious bars are packed with protein (instead of sugar!) to give you hours of energy without the sugar-related slump mid-afternoon. Whip up a batch this weekend for a week's worth of snacks that will keep you full and focused—and much more lean than your usual vending machine pick. Many of the recipes below call for protein powder you can use your favorite, but we highly recommend first checking out our exclusive guide to the best and worst protein powders.


16 Healthy, Homemade Protein Bar Recipes

Check the packaging of many protein bars and you'll find a list of ingredients that looks like it belongs in a science experiment. Save the extra -ols and isolates for the lab and make these homemade protein bars in your own kitchen instead. These delicious bars are packed with protein (instead of sugar!) to give you hours of energy without the sugar-related slump mid-afternoon. Whip up a batch this weekend for a week's worth of snacks that will keep you full and focused—and much more lean than your usual vending machine pick. Many of the recipes below call for protein powder you can use your favorite, but we highly recommend first checking out our exclusive guide to the best and worst protein powders.


16 Healthy, Homemade Protein Bar Recipes

Check the packaging of many protein bars and you'll find a list of ingredients that looks like it belongs in a science experiment. Save the extra -ols and isolates for the lab and make these homemade protein bars in your own kitchen instead. These delicious bars are packed with protein (instead of sugar!) to give you hours of energy without the sugar-related slump mid-afternoon. Whip up a batch this weekend for a week's worth of snacks that will keep you full and focused—and much more lean than your usual vending machine pick. Many of the recipes below call for protein powder you can use your favorite, but we highly recommend first checking out our exclusive guide to the best and worst protein powders.