People often ask us about the sugar content in our bars. We don’t hide from it, rather we embrace it because we know the truth. Coming from two generations of Type-2 diabetics, I know a thing or two about this because it matters to my family. When I first became a sports-nutritionist I was excited to work with people and help them make positive long-term changes to become healthier. My clients were mostly overweight and I preached hard about the simple truths in nutrition and eating a balanced diet. The truth is, losing weight (the right way) takes time. While I reminded them of this long journey, often, after only a few weeks into the program, they’d begin challenging that notion believing there had to be a way to achieve their goals quicker. Sadly, we are an instant gratification, fast track - society that’s always looking for the quick fix. We are largely uniformed, misinformed, and/or over-informed, especially when it comes to diets and food. With so much nutritional advice out there it’s hard to separate fact from fiction as we succumb over and over and over again to the latest fads and trends thinking that we finally found the silver bullet for all our bad eating behaviors of the past.
In the 1990’s the low-fat craze swept the nation and we somehow got fatter than ever. Then came the Atkins diet and the anti-carb kick and we became even more unhealthy.
Now, we’re all about to be saved as “preacher keto” has come to wash away all our sins.
The keto diet, or as I call it, the “war on fruit,” has spread like a virus and convinced its loyal followers to demonize the latest victim in our diet; sugar. Much like fat and carbohydrates before it, sugar and its role in our body is mis-understood and mis-represented to fit a narrative that all sugar is evil. While in general it is wise to reduce your overall sugar intake, to suggest that we should reduce our consumption of antioxidant-vitamin rich fruits loaded with fiber, and increase our consumption of animal protein and saturated fats is just about the dumbest thing I’ve ever heard anyone suggest…EVER!
A 2018 list of best diets from US News and World Report rated the keto diet dead last.
Like other carb restricting diets, Keto promotes eating a lot of protein and fat, and very little carbs, putting the body into "ketosis," where the body breaks down ingested and stored body fat into ketones to be used for energy. People on such carb restricting diets often deal with a myriad of health side-effects including fatigue and light-headedness from lack of carbs, but long-term the effects are much worse. Metabolism slows, stress hormones increase, and muscle building hormones decrease, hardly a recipe for success. Did I mention keto-crotch? Hmmm…Yeah…if the latest diet d’jour cause bad breath and bad… (you know), then that should be an indicator that something is not right. Additionally, the brain requires 100 grams of carbohydrates a day just to function normally, which might explain how people got duped into keto in the first place.
IT’S REALLY SIMPLE
Here’s the simple truth on the matter; you need sugar. Sugar is an essential micronutrient and just like fats, carbs, and protein, not all forms are created equal. Active people and athletes need sugar to perform. The key is knowing the difference between and choosing the right types of sugars. From the perspective of a serious exerciser or athlete, high, medium, and low-glycemic carbohydrates are all needed for optimal performance. Avoid refined sugars and select natural, low-glycemic sources.
WHAT FOURPOINTS DOES DIFFERENTLY
The premise for Fourpoints Bars came out of personal need for an on-the-go real food solution to blood sugar crashing during activity. The formula was simple, if we could balance the proteins, fats, and low-glycemic carbs and package it in a way that promoted a 3-4 hour digestive time, the result would be the first and only slow-burn energy bar on the market to provide long-term energy without the dreaded crash, thus protecting your blood sugar, allowing you to perform better for longer.
Depending on the flavor, Fourpoints bars have between 17-25 grams of natural sugar all from fruit. Not just any fruit either… California Prunes! Prunes are a superfood that have a low-glycemic index (26) and due to the high-fiber content, those sugars are absorbed at a much slower rate helping avoid the spike that later leads to the crash. So, while on the surface, that seems like a lot of sugar, it really isn’t. The soluble fiber in prunes also helps slow down the absorption of other foods you may have eaten.
FOUR POINTS TO DIETING RIGHT
- Eat every 3-4 hours to keep metabolism revved up an remain in an anabolic (muscle-building/maintain state).
- Every meal/snack should have a protein/carb or protein/fat, never just a fat/carb.
- Choose low-glycemic load carbohydrates in meals throughout the day and before training or activity.
- Eat fruit in the morning and veggies in the afternoon to get all your vitamins and antioxidants.
To put a bow on this, be smart. We are not smarter than our bodies. The body tells us what it needs. It craves carbs because it needs carbs. We can’t hack it - we can’t trick it, at least not without consequences. The best medicine is tried and true; balance and moderation. It might take a while to achieve the goals we set but everything in life worth having takes time, including health.