What is a Beachbar?
A place that serves fruity cocktails that have umbrellas in them... No but I do like that kind of Beach Bar too!
Beachbody recently launched an all new snack bar to their line of nutritionals and supplements to help promote healthy eating. Somehow their marketing department landed on "Beachbar" as the winner for what they would call it. Not the most clever but oh well as long as it tastes good and has quality ingredients I guess I could care less what they call it.
So I wanted to share a little bit about this bar;
What It Is and What It Isn't
I would call Beachbar a snack bar. The term protein bar gets thrown around way too loosely in the nutrition world out there. In my opinion in order to qualify as a protein bar the bar would have to get a majority of it's calories from protein. Very few bars on the market are a true protein bar. If you are curious to start doing math, a gram of protein and carbohyrdrate both have 4 calories, and a gram of fat has 9 calories. With 10 grams of protein in each bar it get's roughly 26% of it's total calories from protein. That leaves 74% to come from fat and carbs. Overall I would consider it is a balanced macronutrient bar.
This bar is made from whole foods with no artificial colors, flavors or sweeteners. That's a win in my book and something I definitely look for in other bars that I've consumed in the past.
It is a snack, not a meal! At only 150 calories you likely wouldn't want to replace a meal with solely 1 bar. With the protein and fiber content it will for sure stave off some hunger for a while. When I sampled it, it was good enough to hold me over between breakfast and a late lunch.
The Nutrition Facts
At this point they only have 2 flavors, I have no idea if they will release more in the future. However I did participate in a poll that asked me what kind of flavors I would enjoy if they added others, so that's promising!
Facts are facts so they don't need a whole lot of explaining. As I mentioned above they are pretty balanced from a macronutrient standpoint. The are pretty low in sugar for a snack bar. They are a decent source of protein and fiber. They are low in sodium. They are also lower in vitamins and minerals which is pretty much the norm for this kind of bar.
Let's see what's in them...
Peanut Butter Chocolate Ingredients: Peanuts, Cocoa Whey Crisps (Whey Protein Isolate, Whey Protein Concentrate, Tapioca Starch, Cocoa Powder [Processed with Alkali]), Isomalto-oligosaccharides (Prebiotic Fiber from Tapioca), Chocolate Coating (Cane Sugar, Palm Kernel Oil, Cocoa Powder, Sunflower Lecithin, Salt), Pea Crisps (Pea Protein, Rice Starch), Pea Protein, Chocolate Chips (Cane Sugar, Chocolate Liquor, Cocoa Butter), Cane Sugar, Vegetable Glycerin, Tapioca Syrup, Sunflower Oil, Sunflower Lecithin, Pomegranate Juice Concentrate, Himalayan Pink Salt, Natural Flavors, Almonds, Stevia Leaf Extract, Mixed Tocopherols (Mixed Tocopherols, Sunflower Oil) to preserve freshness
Chocolate Cherry Almond Ingredients: Almonds, Cocoa Whey Crisps (Whey Protein Isolate, Whey Protein Concentrate, Tapioca Starch, Cocoa Powder [Processed with Alkali]), Isomalto-oligosaccharides (Prebiotic Fiber from Tapioca), Chocolate Coating (Cane Sugar, Palm Kernel Oil, Cocoa Powder, Sunflower Lecithin, Salt), Pea Protein, Chocolate Chips (Cane Sugar, Chocolate Liquor, Cocoa Butter), Dried Cherries, Cane Sugar, Vegetable Glycerin, Tapioca Syrup, Sunflower Oil, Sunflower Lecithin, Pomegranate Juice Concentrate, Natural Flavors, Himalayan Pink Salt, Stevia Leaf Extract, Mixed Tocopherols (Mixed Tocopherols, Sunflower Oil) to preserve freshness
A few more ingredients than a Larabar, or Rx Bar but let's take a look at what they all are and what their purpose is and how they can affect you.
Peanuts and Almonds: If you have nut allergies these bars aren't for you. Both of these ingredients provide some of the total protein in the bar plus a majority of the fat content. It's nice to see that they are the main ingredient rather than some obscure ingredient. Good Ingredient!
Whey Crisps: These are a blend of a few ingredients to give the bars a bit of texture and another source of protein. Whey comes from milk, so if you have allergies, steer clear. If you just have an intolerance I doubt the level of lactose in these is significant enough to affect you but consult your physician if you are concerned. Overall I believe these add to the value of the bar by upping the protein content. Good Ingredient!
Isomalto-oligosaccharides: This would be one of those things that if you follow the rule, if you can't pronounce it, don't eat it. Well I could help you pronouce but that will take too long so let me just say this is actually a pretty good ingredient to include in the bar. Essentially it is a fiber that helps with satiety, improves your gut health, and improves your digestion and it is derived from plants. If you want to read more on it, this was a pretty easy to read article that cited some scientific studies. Good Ingredient!
Chocolate Coating: We love chocolate! We believe in moderation and if you choose the right kind it can actually be good for you. I wrote a whole other article on that, Let's Talk Chocolate! The ingredients in the chocolate coating are... ok! I wouldn't consider this healthy chocolate but looking back to the nutrition facts you are getting very little sugar overall so the serving size of chocolate would have minimal effect if any negative health consequences. It's more here for taste then anything. I do like that they sourced a chocolate made with sunflower lecithin versus the soy version, so that's a bonus. Neutral Ingredient.
Pea Protein and Crisps: These things are there to help with the protein content. They are further down the ingredient list likely because too much of them would likely negatively affect the taste of the bar. Good ingredient!
Chocolate Chips: Same thoughts here as the chocolate coating for the most part. Slightly better but still likely not a healthy chocolate. Neutral Ingredient.
Sweeteners (Vegetable Glycerin, Cane Sugar, Dried Cherries, Pomegranate Extract, Stevia Leaf Extract): I figured I would lump all these together rather than address them individually. Overall there is a total of 5 grams of sugar in this whole bar. Some of that comes with the chocolate ingredients listed above, some because of these ingredients. Overall I wouldn't be concerned with 5 grams of sugar in this bar. The cherries and pomegranate extract do bring along some good phytonutrients and antioxidants along for the ride so that is a positive. I know some are turned off by the stevia aftertaste, but having tried these bars I didn't notice any of that. Vegetable glycerin was a new one to me so I had to look that up. Essentially that is a plant based sugar alcohol likely made from palm or coconut. Browsing a few articles it doesn't appear to have any negative health effects other than it's potential as a laxative in HIGH doses, but you aren't getting that in this bar. This bar did get a low glycemic certification also which would suggest it has minimal impact on a healthy person's blood sugar levels. If you have blood sugar issues like diabetes you may want to consult your physician. Neutral Ingredient.
Sunflower Oil and Sunflower Lecithin: I would say there is nothing good or bad about these items. They help create the texture of the bar. There isn't anything inherently bad with them or good with them. Since they are at the end of the ingredient list, I wouldn't worry about them. Neutral Ingredient
Natural Flavors: Oh that elusive word you see on so many labels. What does it really mean. Well good news the FDA does regulate the use of it so it isn't a catch all for all the chemical crap. Here is there definition, “the essential oil, oleoresin, essence or extractive, protein hydrolysate, distillate, or any product of roasting, heating or enzymolysis, which contains the flavoring constituents derived from a spice, fruit or fruit juice, vegetable or vegetable juice, edible yeast, herb, bark, bud, root, leaf or similar plant material, meat, seafood poultry, eggs, dairy products, or fermentation products thereof, whose significant function in food is flavoring rather than nutritional.” Knowing Beachbody's track record with the ingredients that it puts in it's other supplements I doubt anything shady goes into this bar as a natural flavor. It would be great if they could make this bar taste good without this but I guess it isn't a deal breaker for me. Neutral Ingredient.
Himalayan Pink Salt: Salt makes things taste good! At 85-90 mg of sodium I wouldn't worry about it and at least they got it from a good source. Good Ingredient!
Mixed Tocopherols: This is a natural antioxidant/preservative that is derived from sunflower seeds. Let's be honest this is a packaged food and they want it to last longer than a week on a shelf, a warehouse, or shipping truck so some sort of preservative is needed. There is some mixed messages I got this ingredient whether it is good or bad for an individual. There were some studies published on Pubmed that said it was completely safe for human consumption. There were some animal studies that suggested it may raise the risk of cancer, at least in mice. I like always like to think of the quote, "The Dose Makes the Poison." Beings there isn't definitive human studies from what I found, I would say that the small amount in these bars would have no negative health impact on a person. If you are concerned I suggest you do your own research. Neutral Ingredient.
So those are the ingredients, sorry I wrote so much but if you are thorough enough to search out information on these bars you are likely the kind of person that wants all the information and not just the cherry-picked data that has a marketing slant to it.
Overall I would say this food is neither a health food nor a unhealthy food. It's calories come from quality sources. Is it better than a Snickers, yes! Is it as good as bowl of broccoli, no! So it really depends on how you use it and what it displaces in your diet whether or not it would improve your health. I think it would be a quality snack for most. Personally I really like that they kept it gluten and soy free too!
What Does It Cost?
Affordability... we know your money doesn't grow on trees and neither do Beachbars...well the almonds in them do, so... I'll be honest these aren't the cheapest bar on the market but they certainly aren't the most expensive either.
Beachbars will be sold in packs of 15 and retail for $39.80 or $2.65 per bar. That price puts it on the higher end compared to other snack bars but pretty close to most protein bars.
How Does it Compare To Other Bars?
There are hundreds of other bars on the market and a lot of different ways you can compare them. I thought this graphic highlighted a few key pieces and how the Beachbar stacks up against some of the more popular snack bars.
It's lower in sugar, higher in protein and fiber! Basically what that means is that it isn't going to spike your blood sugar as much as others. It will also likely keep you full longer due to the slower digesting protein and fiber elements. Which means if if you are trying to lose weight, you won't be hangry in between meals if you use a bar like this to tide you over.
How Can You Add This Into Your Daily Meal Plan
As I've eluded to already, this bar is going to be best be used as a snack substitute. It could replace other bars that you've maybe used. It could replace a trail mix that you used to snack on. It could replace the chocolate chip scone from Starbucks, please don't eat those everyday!
If you've never been a snacker you could also use it as an experiment and add it in to your morning or afternoon and see how you feel. Some people do just fine without snacks and can keep portion sizes in control. Some need that little shot of food to keep their energy levels up.
I could certainly see us eating this when we travel as a convenient snack that tastes great, doesn't take any prep work, and will satisfy our hunger. I could also see them used as a great pre-workout snack. Combine it with some Energize and you are fueled up for a workout with a decent shot of protein and carbs to get you through it.
If you are a diehard Beachbody person and using the containers a Beachbar will count as a 1/2 a red and 1/2 yellow container, just FYI.
Hope that information has helped you learn more about these bars. If you have any questions by all means reach out via email or in the comments below.
If you would like to try a box of these bars just follow the link below that matches up with your flavor and quantity preference. Bars go on sale beginning April 7th, 2018.
1 Box - 15 Count
2 Boxes - 15 Count per Box/30 Total
3 Boxes - 15 per Box/45 Total
The Cook & The Coach
Healthy is a LIFESTYLE.