Aug 172015
 

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I was approached by Extend Nutrition to try some of their protein bars and write a review. I was intrigued because they were gluten free and they claimed to control blood sugar for up to 9 hours. “Regular snacks” metabolize over a 1-2 hour period, causing a rapid spike in blood sugar, but Extend Nutrition digests very slowly over a period of 6 to 9 hours.

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Since I was having an issue with proper fueling on exercise days (especially days I biked to work), I wanted to give it a try and see if these bars took the edge off.

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The first snack I tried was the Caramel Drizzle rice cakes. I’d brought a nectarine to work for a snack but when I went to eat it I realized it wasn’t ripe yet. Fail. Thank goodness I’d packed some of these snacks in my bag. I gave the rice cakes a try and really liked them! They weren’t overly sweet but tasted great and I did feel satisfied until lunch time. I don’t know that I’d necessarily agree with the 9 hours, but it took the edge off for a few hours until I could eat my lunch. I was a fan of these cakes!

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I gave my dog walker, Amy, a bar to try and asked her to give me her honest opinion. She’s always out on the go all day long visiting animals she takes care of and can’t always plan meals accordingly. She’s asked me in the past for ideas on high protein, filling, low calorie snacks that she can easily eat on the road. I gave her the Mixed Berry Flavor. Her opinion: she liked it and it curbed her appetite for about 2.5 hours (which is pretty good for a protein bar, if you ask me). She liked the texture but the one complaint was that the bar had a slight chemical taste to it. I hear her on this one–most protein bars tend to have that flavor to them. I’m not sure how they can get around that.

I also tried one of the cookies and creme bars and I enjoyed the flavor, texture and it definitely took care of my hunger for a few hours. I didn’t think there was a strong “chemical” taste to it (no more than any other protein bars I’ve tried). I really liked it!

I’m fascinated and wish I understood the science behind how it helps with hunger because no protein bar I’ve ever had before has ever taken care of it like Extend Bars. Also, loved the low calories in them!

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Where to buy Extend Bars: Walgreens, CVS, Publix, Kroger, Winn Dixie, Ralphs, Wegmans, Fry’s. If you want more information, check out their Twitter and Facebook pages!

Giveaway

I’m going to give one reader a $25 gift card to check out the Extend Bars of your choices. All you have to do is leave a comment on this post which bar flavor you’d like to try. I will pick one winner and announce it this Thursday! So leave your comment here! :)

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May 252015
 

Here is Part 3 of the series. It’s for last week (the week before I went on vacation) so my hope is that I make some progress before I leave and that I don’t do too much damage while on vacation!

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Day One

Breakfast: Cereal with milk, toast, unsweetened iced tea and coffee with creamer. Calories: 359

Snack: Blueberries. Calories: 83

Lunch: Homemade tuna salad (with curry powder and lite craisins) with celery and baby carrots. Small piece of chocolate. Calories: 261

Snack: Whey chocolate protein shake. Calories: 100 

Dinner: Baked tilapia with Brussels Sprouts and quinoa. Calories: 430

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Dessert: 2 small Butterfinger minis and half a glass of milk. Calories: 151

Fitness: It was a rest day but I did a lot of walking!

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Day Two

Breakfast: 2 fried eggs, English muffin with cinnamon and splenda, unsweetened iced tea and coffee with creamer. Calories: 338

Snack: Green grapes. Calories: 92

Lunch: I made 2 ham wraps with Swiss cheese, a little mayo and mustard, kale and spinach and then guacamole with celery and carrots. I kind of loved this lunch! It was delicious and low calories and very filling. 1 piece of chocolate. Calories: 334

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Snack: Pre-swim snack of plain Greek yogurt with fresh blueberries: Calories: 111

Dinner: Quinoa, Brussels sprouts and Trader Joe’s Chicken Shu Mai with some sriracha. I was SO hungry after swimming and needed something fast. Calories: 480

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Dessert: Half a glass of milk and 2 mini Butterfinger bars. Calories: 158

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It was a really decent day.

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Breakfast: 2 fried eggs, piece of toast with some jelly (my homemade jalapeno jelly), unsweetened iced tea, coffee with creamer. Calories: 345

Snack: Green grapes. Calories: 92

Lunch: Homemade tuna salad with sliced cucumber and a Laughing Cow cheese wedge. This lunch was not quite filling enough for me. Calories: 261

Snack: Plain Greek yogurt with blueberries. Calories: 111

Dinner: I was really craving a grilled cheese sandwich so that’s what I had! I made a salad with kale and Swiss chard and spinach with a piece of bacon crumbled, cucumber, tomatoes and Caesar dressing. Calories: 509

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Dessert: Fun size Butterfinger and glass of milk. Calories: 240

Exercise: Did a walk during my lunch break and then went to the gym where I did some weight lifting and the elliptical. My back was really cranky at the gym so I quit early.

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It was an ok day. Could have done better.

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Breakfast: Rice Krispie cereal with milk, piece of toast with jalapeno jelly, unsweetened iced tea and coffee with creamer. Calories: 396

Snack: Green grapes. Calories: 92

Lunch: Back with my new favorite lunch! The ham and cheese roll up with spinach and guacamole and cucumber slices. Calories: 290

Dinner: Quinoa, bratwurst, steamed broccoli with Goddess dressing and sauteed onions. It was a kind of “throw everything together” kind of dinner. Calories: 570

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Exercise: Just walking, it was a rest day.

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I went over my calories for the day and I was disappointed but there was a small victory–I really wanted a glass of wine with dinner but I refrained. It was either have quinoa with dinner or the glass of wine but not both and I made the decision to eat instead. Aw well, I was still a little over for the day but it wasn’t too bad.

Day-5

Breakfast: Chocolate Whey protein shake on the way to the airport! I see a bagel or sandwich and coffee in my future.

 

I have some ideas for meals and snacks for when I get home from vacation. I think they will be helpful. Question for you readers: is this of interest to you guys? I don’t usually post food diary type posts and only intended on doing this for a few weeks but as I make progress I think I will continue what I’m doing. Do you guys want some more food diary type posts? Maybe not weekly but on a semi regular basis?

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