You may have seen Gatorade's marketing blitz showcasing their line of nutrition bars for athletes. We've had several parents ask us what we thought about them, so I recorded my review of the bars. Enjoy the video, summarized notes are below.
Gatorade Fuel and Recover Bar Review
Gatorade takes an old-school approach to nutrition: use whatever ingredients it takes to provide the nutritional outcome they desire. They pioneered the sports nutrition space in the 60's and 70's, but in my opinion, haven't kept up with consumer preferences. Today, consumers not only want effective sports nutrition products, they want to know products use quality, natural ingredients. Gatorade has remained very one-dimensional here.
Regarding the Gatorade Fuel and Recover Bars, we always recommend considering three aspects when evaluating fuel for you athlete:
It's clear these bars were designed for older athletes/adults. The Fuel Bar has 45g of carbs and 19g of sugar and the Recover Bar has 360 calories with 20g of protein. Both of these are far too much for a young athlete.
This is my biggest concern with these bars and with Gatorade's products generally. Both bars have well over 20 ingredients and many of which I don't recognize. If you're not comfortable with artificial flavors, colors, preservatives, etc. stay clear of Gatorade's bars.
Lastly (most important?) is taste. Will your athlete actually eat the bar? The only thing that matters here is your athlete's opinion so I'll reserve my mine. However, I will include a note on cost. These bars are cheaper than the HERO Bar, especially if you consider them on a per gram of protein or per calorie basis. This is an upside of Gatorade's mass production capabilities and use of lower quality ingredients.