Tony Ferguson - What are the benefits of our snack bars?

In our busy lives, snacking between meals can be an important way get use through the day and survive long stretches between meals. But snacking mindlessly can lead to grazing, blunting of the all-important hunger and fullness cues and consuming much more energy than you intend to. Research from a behaviour research unit in the UK called ‘The Nudge Unit’ found that adults are consuming an extra meal worth of calories a day without even realising it and this was partly due to snacking. So similarly to your meals, it can be helpful to plan out your snacks and choose something that is nutritious as well as satisfying.

Good things to look for in a snack is:

  • Protein – to keep you feeling fuller for longer as well as provide essential amino acids which are the building blocks of muscles as well as being integral for maintaining cells, hormones and enzymes throughout the body.
  • Fibre – to keep your bowels moving regularly as well as provide useful nutrients for your microbiome.
  • Low in added sugar but with some naturally occurring sugars from foods such as fruit and dairy.
  • Low in artificial or intense sweeteners (such as stevia) so that your tastebuds don’t get washed out, making everything else taste bland.

The Tony Ferguson snack bars have a balance of nutrients that taste nice but will also keep you satisfied and energised. Nutrients such as protein and fibre are important for helping you feel full as well as slow down the digestion so you feel fuller for longer. The Tony Ferguson snack bars have a surprisingly large amount of protein and fibre in one serve. There is almost 15g of protein (equate to about 2.5 eggs) and 9g of fibre (about the same as 4 Weet-bix).  All of this in a snack with about the same energy/calories as a yoghurt.

It is good to see that the snack bar left most of the carbs and sugar in (about the same as 2/3 of a piece of bread) as that is important for providing energy for your brain and body to get to the next meal.   The world has gone a bit mad in recent years trying to remove all the sugar from our diets. Almost every food in our diet contains some sugar in many different forms. There is lactose in milk, fructose in fruit and complex carbohydrates in our starchy vegetables, legumes and wholegrains.  The naturally occurring sugars in these foods are what the body uses for energy (in the form of glucose) and literally provides our brain power. Any other energy source in our diet (i.e. fat, protein, alcohol) has to undergo a complex transformation to be finally used by the body for energy.  So do yourself and your body a favour and let the naturally occurring sugars in and push back all those silly sweeteners!

So now that we know the snack bar is pretty balanced nutritionally, what does it taste like. The bar is dense like what you would expect from a protein bar. The benefit of this is that you can’t eat it too quickly. It forces you to eat slowly and savour the experience. There are two flavours: Choc Cherry and Choc nut.  The Choc Cherry has nice cherry flavoured strips throughout the bar which are a nice surprise and contrast to the chocolate flavour rather than being a cherry flavour all the way through. The Choc nut has separate nut pieces in there which again is a nice contrast to the rich chocolate flavour. 

So that’s my take on the new snack bars so if you find that you need a little something extra to get you from meal to meal (as well as take your mind off food for a few hours), plan out your snacks thoughtfully. Consider how balanced they are nutritionally as well as choose something that is going to satisfy (but not overwhelm) your tastebuds. Mix and match your snacks so that you include a bit of variety as well as make space for other nutritious snacks such as fruit, raw veggies and yoghurt. Remember to have a drink (ideally water) with your snacks and meals to help you slow down so you can savour and enjoy your snack break.

You deserve it!

February 21, 2024