Daily Archives: January 28, 2010

Christy – Energy Bars

Nutrition - product review

Energy Bars are all the craze now. It seems like every company has one. They are convenient, fast and as varied as they come. No matter who you are or how you eat (vegan, raw, muscle head) there is a bar for you. And now they taste good too!

A lot of clients ask me which ones are good. And I have spent hours in the grocery looking through all of them and trying to decide.

Overall, the biggest thing to look for in a bar is that the ingredients are all natural. You should be able to recognize everything that they are putting into the bar. There is no need for chemicals or weird protein isolates. The bar should be real food.

Then you want to pay attention to the calories content and make sure that it is not absurd. Look to see if the bar is intended as a meal replacement – that will be a clue that the calories, fat, etc will be higher. Hopefully the bar that you are eating is just a healthy addition/quick solution in your healthy diet so there is really no need for the bar to be over 300 calories tops.

After that, I think it is a question of why you are eating a bar – it is as a fast snack in the middle of the day? An energizer after a long workout? A replacement for a dessert?

For a fast snack, I am newly in love with the Pure Organic Bar. It tastes good the serving size is small. With all bars, I start with half and then see if I still need more.

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When I am on planes or traveling a lot, I like the Flavor & Fiber bars by Gnu Foods. A good friend of mine gave them to all of her bridesmaids in our baskets for the wedding weekend. Traveling can make me irregular, but let’s just say these take care of that problem :) Gnu just sent us some flavors to try and I am looking forward to trying this one

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For a pick me up after a workout, I like Vega’s new protein bars. They are not as smooth as some of the other bars but I know that everything in them is giving me the vitamins, minerals, proteins and quality carbohydrates I need to recover and feel good. That’s reason enough for me to eat them. Can’t find a picture of these but the link is above.

As a dessert option, by far the best is a Paley Bars. I had my first one the other day – (they gave us a bunch for free to try) Liquid Sunshine. They are really, really tasty. Very sweet and rich which is why I say they are a good option for a dessert. There are chunks of fruit and chocolate (in the one I had). It was almost like eating a cookie dough. They do have sugar in some of the ingredients of some of the bars (like in the chocolate in Liquid Sunshine) so they wouldn’t be suitable for diabetics. But if you usually go for candy or an equally unhealthy dessert, give these a try. You will be eating whole, good for you foods and not compromising any taste.

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(Don’t you love the packaging?!)

For really satisfying middle of the day snacks, I also enjoy Honest Food Bars, Fruition, and 18 Rabbits. They are really tasty and also good ones for kids.

What bars do you enjoy??

Lynn – Music and Me

gluten free - press - product review

I just can’t seem to get myself to the gym this week – I feel guilty, not at all because of the exercise part, but because it seems like a waste of $$$! Why pay a membership fee if I’m not going to go? Oh well. Maybe next week I’ll try to make it a few times to get my money’s worth. It’s been all about long walks, and lifting weights in the front of the television, like I did this morning with Oprah – focused on my favorite subject, healthy food!

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Not the greatest shot of Alicia Silverstone, but I did enjoy the segment where they followed her grocery shopping (how perfect for this blog!) – if you missed it you can watch it online here.

I was on a TV Pilot with Alicia a few years ago and remember how she brought her own vegan meals to set and had M Cafe delivered. Her book, The Kind Diet, and website are extensions of how she truly practices what she preaches.

I heeded the advice on the screen above and decided to try a new whole grain product. 10 of them, to be exact:

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I picked up this bag at Whole Foods last week, in an effort to branch out from my regular oat bran/oatmeal breakfast. The serving size is smaller and the cooking time is longer, but it basically looks the same:

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  • 1/4 cup 10-grain Hot Cereal
  • 3/4 cup water
  • 2 TB egg whites
  • 1/2 a super ripe banana
  • 1/2 an organic bosc pear
  • Raw organic chopped pecans, nuked for 45 seconds
  • Spoonful of Crofter’s Organic North America Superfruit Spread

With peppermint tea:

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While folding laundry I watched a documentary that I had taped on PBS, “The Audition,” about young singers competing at the Metropolitan Opera House:

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Something you might not know about me is that I basically grew up at The Met; my mother was in the Ladies’ Chorus for over 30 years and both my brother and I sang in the Children’s Chorus until we were ten. This movie really made me nostalgic – seeing all the backstage places I was familiar with and hearing the music I listened to regularly as a kid.

A lot of you also discovered, from my last blog post, that I teach piano lessons – well…hee hee…I only have ONE student, someone I used to babysit for. I played for most of my life; in college I taught other students and my senior project was a piano recital featuring the music of Fanny and Felix Mendelssohn (I was a music and women’s studies double major).

I was actually just presented with a blogger award (thanks, Angie!) where I’m supposed to share 7 fun facts about me that you may not know. Since I’ve already listed 2, here are 5 other music-related ones:

  1. I have perfect pitch.
  2. I made my TV debut on MTV’s “Say What Karaoke” – singing Def Leppard’s “Pour Some Sugar On Me” dressed in a pink muumuu, square dancing. I’m going to leave it at that.
  3. In high school, I took up the oboe junior year so that I could be first chair in something for college applications (there were no other oboists in the band). I sounded like a dying duck.
  4. I went to band camp and loved it. I attended New England Music Camp in Maine for two years as a camper, and two more years as a counselor.
  5. Abe and I have a “band,” YPOK2. (I use quotation marks because we’ve never performed and we haven’t written/recorded anything in years.)

“The Beautiful Blogger Award” requires me to nominate 7 other bloggers, but I really can’t choose…I pass it along to any of you out there with blogs who want to participate!

Do you play a musical instrument?

Onto lunch….

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The 10-grains didn’t last me more than 3 hours – I’ll need to increase the serving size next time. I had a pretty typical salad mix – organic greens, organic sweet potato, mixed bell peppers, avocado, hormone-free turkey slices, and a sprinkling of these Sprouted Sunflower Seeds that Kaia Foods sent us:

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They taste exactly like regular sunflower seeds – except these are dehydrated, rather than roasted, so they’re fine for raw diets – good for gluten-free and vegan ones, too. Plus, the ingredients are all organic. I didn’t pay for these, but for $4, you get quite a bit, and I think that’s worth it!

Health Blog Helper interviewed Christy and me!  Check it out here.