Protein is excellent for weight loss. Eating a protein-packed diet that is low in sugar and refined carbs can be the key to burning fat and calories and losing more weight.
But don’t be fooled into thinking all foods with protein are equally equipped to boost your metabolism and help you reach your weight loss goals. This is the one protein you should avoid because it slows down your metabolism in the morning.
They’re convenient, packed with protein, and make for the perfect on-the-go meal replacement or snack. Protein bars have become a must-have food item for health-conscious folks, especially those who are short on time.
But not all protein bars are created equal. And, in fact, some protein bars can actually slow down you metabolism, which completely defeats their purpose.
According to studies, a high-protein diet helps you lose more weight and build more muscle, which in turn contributes to burning more fat. Not only does protein decrease body mass, but it helps you feel fuller for longer and curbs your appetite so that you don’t overeat or indulge in too many snacks.
There are a number of quality protein bars on the market that are nutrient dense and low in sugar — but there are also bar options that contain so much sugar it would be better to think of them as a dessert.
And therein lies the problem with many protein bars: those that are high in sugar can slow your metabolism down to a snail’s pace.
According to Karen Ansel, MS, RDN, author of Healing Superfoods For Anti-Aging: Stay Younger, Live Longer, who spoke with Prevention.com, you should always look for bars that contain between 6 and 12 grams of protein — as well as at least 3 grams of fiber.
"Not only does it make the bar more satiating, but it will also slow the release of sugar into your system,” Ansel said.
As far as ingredients that are used to make protein bars, the best ones include whole foods like nuts and fruits and are completely free of added sugars, which go by names like fructose syrup, honey, and agave, reports Prevention.
One To Try: Zing
Zing protein bars were actually developed by dietitians and contain 10 grams of protein and 8 grams of fiber. With 7 grams of sugar and natural ingredients like dark chocolate and nuts, this is one morning snack option that won’t spike your blood sugar levels and leave you feeling sluggish hours later.