Feb 152012

Incredible! Jaw Dropping!! Revolutionary!!!  We hear these words used to sell everything from lip balm to light bulbs, and it’s pretty rare that they’re applicable. (When was the last time that you were AMAZED by the high performance scouring capabilities of your new dish sponge for instance?)

So when I say that ProBar’s Arts Original Blend Whole Food Meal Bars are an incredible product that may revolutionize your on-the-run nutrition I want you to know that I’m careful with my adjectives. And I’m prepared to lay down some strong words for Probar.

Like many runners dialing into my nutritional needs when going long has been an ongoing process of trial and error.  As I turn my racing focus towards ultra-marathons and plan a series of long distance solo adventures over the course of the next year I’ve been asking myself the following question: Where can I get the most bang for my bar?

What I’m referring to is nutrient density-the energy that your body uses to digest your food compared to the energy return from the food that you’re digesting.  There is only so much that you can eat on a run before it effects your stomach, so caloric density, digestibility, and a balance between both rapid release and slow release energy are  important factors to consider when choosing your fuel.

ProBar is comprised of a number of high quality, raw, and natural ingredients. (A high number of them! The ingredients that comprise the Arts Original Collection contain no less than 15 whole, plant-based foods per bar) At 370 calories per 4 inch by 4 inch bar these bricks of raw and natural nutrition pack a punch like no other product that I’ve pulled out of my pack before. And, unlike the myriad of mystery ingredients commonly found in  nutritional supplements such as Gu’s or chews you’re getting the benefit of eating real food. So you’re much less likely to find yourself half- starved an hour after a long run or race.

I started using this product while training for a recent 50k and found I could unwrap a bar and chow it down without breaking my stride for a literal lunch on the run.  Because the ingredients in the Arts Original Collection are blended with low glycemic index grain sweeteners the combination of simple and complex carbohydrates immediately boosts blood sugar while the whole grains and fruits help to maintain these levels for hours.

This review is specific to the Arts Orignal Blend flavor which, if you like peanut butter and chocolate, you’re sure to enjoy.  My experiments with additional flavors and some of their other products such as Fruitrition snack bars and the Halo dessert bars have yielded mixed results; but this is simply a matter of personal taste-all of the meal replacements bars have a similar nutritional build and the rest of the products in the Pro-Bar line are comprised of similarly high quality ingredients.

While I don’t advocate eating a meal that comes in a small plastic wrapper on a regular basis  unless you are a) in outer space or b) training for or running an ultra-marathon, an advantage to Pro-Bar meal bars is that you can try these one out on your lunch break before breaking one out on the trails.

So if you’re interested in exploring alternate fueling options for your 2012 running season give the ProBar Art’s Original Whole Food Meal Bars a shot. I hope that you benefit from them almost as much as I have (but not so much that you beat me at the next race…) and I hope to see you on the trails!

Find more information on Probar at www.theprobar.com

by NJ Dave

  2 Responses to “Food Review – Probar Whole Food Meal Bar”

  1. They have been my breakfast and snack staple for backpacking and ultras for years. Art’s Original is my favorite -although, they all taste pretty good. If it’s really cold outside warm it up before trying to bite into it.

  2. What til you try the Superfruit Slam.

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