The world of bars is a very competitive one because there are so many choices on the shelf. Protein bars specifically all aim to provide athletes the nutrition their body needs to sustain activity. With more of a focus on heath in the media it has become more and more important to be able to read your protein bar label and not have it made up of junk and a bunch of chemicals. I've heard a lot of talk of Quest Bars from the fitness community and given that they are gluten-free I felt I had to try them. Now recently I have turned away from bars as a meal replacement for me and have been eating other healthy options, but I still like to have one or two bars in my purse just in case, especially when traveling. With some trips coming up I was hoping that the Quest Bar could be a new companion however that will not be the case.
While the flavor variety is quite compelling it seems that one of two ingredients do not agree with me and make my tongue tingle and my lips slightly swell. Lo Han Go, a natural sugar from a plant, newly popular sugar replacement ingredient for low sugar bars, and IMO Fiber. I first experienced this while eating the cinnamon roll bar and I thought perhaps this was just a side effect of the flavor and the Stevia. Overall the flavor was decent; it kind of tasted like raw cinnamon roll dough; very rich, slightly grainy and very soft. I was eating it slowly for my morning snack and decided to stop eating it about half way through the bar. It took until 8 o'clock that night for my tongue to feel normal again.
I need to know if this was a fluke so in the confines of my own home on the weekend I had two bites of a different flavor and waited to see if my tongue felt funny again- yes it did! I packed the rest of the bars up and I gave the rest of them to a fitness buddy who I knew would enjoy them. It really was a shame because besides for these two ingredients that were responsible for my tingling tongue, everything else in the ingredient list was very clean. They almost had the consistency and taste of a raw bar, except this fiber replacement that they're using is definitely not natural. I did a little research and while this IMO can come from a few natural resources, it seems to also be very chemically manipulated and can be derived from wheat. If they were using psyllium husk in their bars instead I would be completely happy with them, but regardless of what made my tongue tingle, I strive to eat only things I can pronounce and know what they are.