Are energy bars good to bring along when walking?

Unless you are going on a very long walk, where you'll be walking through your regular mealtime, energy bars may not the best choice to bring with you. While proper planning for the conditions you will be facing before any physical activity is important, properly hydrating your body should be at the top of your list! You are better off having the energy bar or a very light balanced meal, before taking your walk, than bringing it with you…

For starters, while energy bars can provide nutrition & satiety and in a pinch, replace a meal, there is a much higher probability that you will need adequate hydration from liquid sources preferably water, or sports drinks on longer walks, than what little moisture you might get from an energy bar. If you do not bring fluids on your walk, you will find that eating an energy bar will most likely make you even thirstier and force you to cut your walk short, especially outdoors where drinkable water may not be readily available; If you feel like you absolutely must bring some solid food with you while walking, consider fruit such as an apple or a banana which is high in both, water content and potassium as well as other nutrients and trace minerals. Like any other food, an energy bar has to be eaten and go through the digestive process... even though digestion of sugars start in the mouth and there is a good chance that you can replenish some of the glycogen lost on your walk with an energy bar, the digestion and absorption process takes longer for solid foods over liquids. If the goal is to replace lost nutrients in the time it takes for you to complete your average brisk power walk, a combination of water and a sports drink would be a better choice for quickly replenishing lost electrolytes and glucose.

Great question... I would suggest bringing your favorite protein/energy bar if you are out walking for more than an hour to stay on track with eating every 2.5 to 3 hours. Bring a water bottle or sports drink as well to stay hydrated especially if your walking in a warmer/humid climate. I hope this helps and have fun!

Bringing some form of nourishment may be beneficial to you when exercising.  This may also depend on what you have eaten prior to your walk and how long you plan to walk.  If you have had a filling lean protein prior to your walk then you should be able to endure the walk without issue.  However, if you have not eaten anything prior to your walk and have not had enough nourishment throughout the day then bringing some form of food will be a smart choice.  Also, it will depend on the length of your walk.  If you plan to walk for 10+ miles then having some form of an energy bar will be beneficial.  Again, much of this will depend on how your body handles exercise and how long you plan to walk.  Remember to start smart and build yourself up to a long walk.  Prior to the long walk, you should have an idea how your body responds and this should result in whether or not you need some form of energy to avoid feelings of hunger.

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.