I’ve never been a huge fan of protein bars. Their chemical/artificial taste is just something that never appealed to me along with the fact I can never quite find protein bars that agree with my stomach. If you didn’t know already my stomach is very sensitive to dairy which is why I try to stick to a dairy free diet most of the time (although, I can deal with dairy every so often – just not everyday!)
So, I was pleasantly surprised when I tried a sample of Max’s protein bars to find that not only did my stomach agree to the bars but my taste buds did too!
Max kindly sent me three of his protein bars to sample: White chocolate and raspberry, apple oat & cinnamon and dark chocolate & cranberry. My favourite of the bars turned out to be the apple oat & cinnamon bar which tasted exactly as the bar described and didn’t hold a horrible fake taste. This is no surprise though really when the bar (as well as the dark chocolate bar) has no refined sugar in it – only natural occurring sugars from the likes of fruit such as, dates, honey, the juice of an apple and cranberries. Winner winner for a RAW foodie like me! (I hate anything that is packed with tons of sugar – no thank you!)
My least favourite bar would have to be the white chocolate & raspberry which had refined sugar in due to the chocolate, however, the reason I wasn’t quite a fan of the bar was purely on taste – it was just a little too sweet for me and i’m not a white chocolate fan, sorry!
Now, don’t get me wrong – when I first looked at the macros of the bar I was a little put of by the sugar content until I learnt the facts previously stated. Compared to Trek Bars’ banana protein bar, Max’s protein bars contains considerably less sugar. Trek’s 55g bar has 24.9g of sugar and just 10.1g of protein, whereas the dark chocolate and cranberry bar contains 17g of sugar and 17g of protein. The white chocolate and raspberry bar contains just 11g of sugar. Furthermore, it’s important to remember that many other bar companies disguise the sugar content in their bars as fibre. An EU loophole means that fibre itself does not have to be broken down and thus the sugar content within this is not included in the nutritional data (not everything is as it seems on the label!).
Also, while I may not be a fan of refined sugar I do like to consume natural sugars as it gives you energy, so it isn’t something that should be ignored. Max’s bars are perfect for cyclists/runners or those training through a long weight session. Plus protein and carbohydrates, when consumed together, produce a greater insulin response, increasing the absorption rate of amino acids and glucose into the muscle. Again, ideal for an after post workout snack after a weights session with 17g worth of whey protein in each bar.
Macros & Ingredients
Another thing I love about these bars are the limited ingredients. I always say; if you can’t pronounce it then it’s probably not good for you. Apart from quinoa, always eat quinoa.
For example, in Max’s apple, oat & cinnamon bar you can find the following ingredients:
Whey Protein Concentrate (Milk)
Gluten Free Oats (11%)
Dried Apples (10%),
Apple juice concentrate Dates
8 ingredients. Simple, tasty and agrees with my sensitive stomach! This is pretty much the same story for all the bars too which again, is great.
However, the most important thing in protein bars we all look for? Macros. Again, using the same bar the following macros will be found:
Fat 8g, Carbs 23g (of which sugars 18g), Protein 17g – 216 kcal.
So, whilst it’s not the most amazing macros compared to other protein bars out there (the white chocolate bar being the best macros – in my opinion) it’s still pretty good and I will continue to use these bars occasionally on my high carb days when out on the go and I can’t grab something a little more natural.
Dark Chocolate & Cranberry
Fat 8g, Carbs 23g (of which sugars 17g), Protein 17g – 223 kcal.
White Chocolate & Raspberry
Fat 10g, Carbs 14g (of which sugars 11g), Protein 17g – 204 kcal.
Price per bar: £2.20 (Max’s website)
Price per box: £29.85
Overall, I would definitely recommend these bars. The highlights being the limited ingredients, free from refined sugars and the taste – no more fakeness!