Tag Archives: fiber

Susta Natural Sweetener

Whooooooo likes sugar? ( I do ! I do!)

But, whooooo likes all the calories sugar contains and how ADDICTIVE it is, making us crave MORE?

That’s what I thought. 🙂

So where to turn? Should I forget sugar all together? As in no more brownies? or cupcakes? No. Moderation is key. Everyone needs a lil suggah 🙂

Or, Should  I try artificial sweeteners? I would try to limit those too…

Luckily for you, I found a pretty good answer. Aside from Stevia all natural sweetener, I found a product that is sweet, low in calories, and actually has some health benefits. NXT Nutritionals manufactures a sweetener called Susta, and claims it is “A Healthy Alternative to Table Sugar and Artificial Sweeteners”.

This particular sweetener combines soluble fiber (prebiotics) and probiotics(like the ones found in yogurt), has added essential nutrients and vitamins, is all natural, and has a low Glycemic Index (so no harsh blood sugar spikes!). Each packet is also only 5 calories per serving.

Each packet provides an ample amount of a fine, white powder, not really granulated per se, but more refined. It has a nice, sweet flavor, very similar to sucrose or table sugar. It also doesn’t have a nasty aftertaste like Splenda, Aspartame or even Stevia can have some times (sorry, Stevia- I still love you!). I found it works best in foods as a sweetener, and not liquids. I added a packet to oatmeal, and it really pumped up the flavor. I also sprinkled it on banana slices (which wasn’t “ripe” enough, or sweet enough, for my liking), and it added a nice, mellow sweetness. Nothing too overpowering- but just right. Which is why the flavor was a bit lost when I added it to my tea- it was too mellow and dissolved quickly- so I will stick to sweetning foods with these packets.

Overall, I like these packets. I give them 4 stars, because it really is a healthier alternative to table sugar, and has the added benefit of probiotics, fiber, and added nutrients. Good job, NXT Nutritionals!

1 packet is 5 calories, 0 grams of fat, 2 grams of carbs, 1 gram of fiber, and 0 grams of protein. You also get 10% Vitamin C, 5% of Vitamin B6, Folic Acid, Vitamin B12 and Biotin, and 3% of your daily value of Niacin, Selenium and Chromium. How’s that for sweeeet! 😉

Inulin, Fructose, Natural Flavors, Probiotic (Bacillus Coagulans), Vitamin C (ascorbic acid), Cinnamon Extract, Goji Berry Extract, Bitter Melon Extract, Grape Seed Extract, Vitamin B6, Niacinamide, Biotic, Folic Acid, Chromium, Selenium, Vitamin B12.

 

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Filed under 4 Star, Toppings

Odwalla Bars

od

On my never ending hunt to find the perfect pre-workout bar, i discovered Odwalla Bars at my local Stop & Shop. They had a variety of flavors, ranging from fruity to nutty, and even ones with extra protein. Odwalla claims that their products are “where nutritious and delicious finally meet”, and only use ingredients found from Mother Nature. They also never contain any preservatives, artificial flavors or colors, trans fats, or GMOs, and their bars are made with whole grains. They sounded pretty good for a pre-workout bar with some fruit to me.
I picked up two of the flavors, Choco-walla Bar and SuperFood variety.
Next time i go to the store, iw ould liek to try the Mocha-walla and the Chocolate Chip Peanut. They were, sadly, sold out when i went to the store though 😦

Moving on, the taste…
Choco-walla– uh, can you say, DELICIOUS? Who knew chocolate for breakfast could be healthy and delicious?! It wasn’t overpoweringly sweet, which is a good thing for me, but rather just the right amount of sweetness. It was certainly chocolately too. Semi-sweet chocolate chips were used, and i even tasted hints of  almond and vanilla flavors as well. Odwalla claims that this bar will satisfy my sweeth tooth, and it sure did! I also really liked how this bar had 5 grams of filling fiber. Woo!  This bar is also a good source of Vitamin E & C, and beta-Carotene.

Each bar is 210 calories, 5 grams of fat,39 carbohydrates, 5 grams of fiber, and 4 grams of protein.

Brown Rice Syrup, Organic Rolled Oats, SemiSweet Chocolate Chips (Organic Evaporated Cane Juice, Chocolate Liquor, Cocoa Butter, Soy Lecithin, Ground Vanilla Beans), Oat Bran, Organic Oat Flour, , Organic Evaporated cane Juice Syrup, Date Puree, Raisin Puree, Vegetable Gycerin, Oat Fiber, Plum Puree, Dutch Cocoa (Processed with Alkali), Diced Dry Roasted Almonds, Less than 2% of Organic Soy Nuts, Calcium Carbonate, Natural Flavor, Natural Flavor, Natural Chocolate Liquor, Organic Sunflower Oil, Soy Lecithin, Baking Soda, Vitamin C (Ascorbic Acid), Salt, Vitamin E (D-Alpha Tocopherol Acetate), Beta Carotene and Folic Acid

SuperFood- Okay, don’t freak out, but this bar is GREEN. Green like spinach. I opened up the package, and i was like wait, is my bar green? or is it just too early in the morning for me? Nope. It indeed, is GREEN. But in this case, GREEN = GOOD. There are 500mg of Spirulina which gives it the color. Spirulina is a blue-green algae that is the most nutrient rich whole food in existence. Nice! It tasted fruity, however, with banana flavors, soft oats and plump raisins throughout the bar. I also tasted a little bit of coconut too. This one’s definitely a keeper for me!

One bar is 200 calories, 3.5 grams of fat, 39 carbohydrates, 3 grams of fiber, and 4 grams of protein.

Grape Juice Concentrate, Dates, Raisins, Dried Bananas, Rolled Oats (Organic), Diced Dried Bananas (Organic) (Bananas, Rice Flour), Oat Bran, Rice Syrup, Dried Unsulfured Unsweetened Coconut, Brown Crisp Rice (Rice Flour, Rice Bran, Rosemary Extract), Soy Butter (Soybeans, Soybean Oil, Salt), Vegetable Glycerine, Barley Flour, Oat Flour, Mango, Apple Juice (Apple Juice Concentrate, Water, Ascorbic Acid), Vanilla Flavor, Spirulina, Calcium Carbonate, Soy Lecithin, Baking Soda (Aluminum Free), Vitamin C, Vitamin E, Folic Acid

Overall, the 2 bars i tried, i enjoyed. They are soft-baked bars with wholesome, natural ingredients. I can’t wait to try more. Which ones are your favorites?

CHECK OUT THIS GIVE-AWAY

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Filed under 5 Star, Odwalla

Cedarlane Beans, Rice & Cheese Style Burrito

ceeeeee

After trying Cedarlane’s Enchiladas [ see my post here ] i had a good feeling about their other products, such as the Beans, Rice & Cheese Style Burrito. It is made with organic ingredients, such as the tortilla, beans and the rice, are all organic. But what’s this? This Burrito only has 1 GRAM OF FAT? How can it be cheesy? How can it be TASTY?! Well, readers, fear not, Cedarlane knows what they are doing!

So, I wrapped this burrito in a paper towel like I was supposed to and put it in the microwave. After two minutes, a spicy, flavorfull aroma filled my kitchen and made my tummy grumble. My mom even commented on “what smells so good?” and was totally jealous when i popped this baby out of the microwave. A little bit of cheese oozed out of the burrito, but that didn’t bother me a bit. It just means there’s plenty of filling on the inside to enjoy!
I cut the burrito in half, and there was a substantial amount of filling. They didn’t scrimp on it- it looked like it would actually keep me full! There is also a thick amount of bread as well as the filling. The bread has an almost “bisquity” taste to it, and is also slightly sweet. It cooked pretty evenly, chewy in some areas due to the filling and crisper in others, but it was good. I actually enjoyed the mixed consistency of crisper tortilla on the ends and a softer, doughy tortilla in the middle. It tastes like the inside of a pizza crust as well. Yum. When is that ever a bad thing?
Onto the insides, which were also delicious! There were a lot of beans and brown rice all smothered in a tasty tomato sauce with cheese dispersed. The cheese was so good- a great compliment to the burrito. It was soy cheese, which is how the burrito is so low in fat and still tasty, but if i didn’t tell you it was soy, you wouldn’t be able to tell (so don’t turn up your nose until you try it! 😉 )

Overall, I will be buying this burrito again. It was filling, delicious, and the right size for a quick dinner to be paired with a glass of milk and some veggies, or even by itself if your really pressed for time. One burrito is 260 calories, 1 gram of fat, 48 carbohydrates, 7 grams of fiber (woo!), and 13 grams of protein. You also get 25% Vitamin C and 10% of your daily calcium needs. My only complaint (sorry!!) is that they didn’t use a whole wheat wrap 😦 There is plenty of fiber in this burrito already, and they did use brown rice instead of white, but this would be absolutely perfect if the tortilla was whole wheat. For now, it’s fine by me!

Burrito Filling (Organic Pinto Beans, Organic Brown Rice, Soy Cheddar Cheese [soy beverage {filtered water, soy protein and soy milk solids}, casein {a milk protein}, soy oil, food starch modified, natural flavors, powdered cellulose, salt, sodium citrate, citric and lactic acids, calcium phosphate, carotenal color, carrageenan {a natural seaweed fiber}], Organic Tomatoes, Organic Tomato Puree, Filtered Water, Green Chilis, Onion, Herbs and Spices, Tamari, Cilantro, Sea Salt, Corn Starch), Organic Unbleached Flour Tortilla.

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Filed under 5 Star, Cedarlane

Earth’s Best Elmo Mac’n Cheese

ELMOO

Macaroni & cheese anyone? Who, honestly, can resist mac & cheese!? This sinful dish is often gooey, cheesy and delicious, but also often packed with sodium, artificial colors and fillers. But not this mac & cheese!
Earth’s Best Elmo (yes, ELMO!) Mac’n Cheese is all natural, with 22g of whole grain per serving. Yes i admit, it’s probably aimed toward kids, but who says “older kids” can’t enjoy it as well? Plus i’m a sucker for portion size!

This Mac & Cheese comes with a side of carrots and broccoli for extra nutrition. If you look on the box, you will see, yes, the macaroni is in shapes of elmo’s face. Cute! I was excited to try this, i love macaroni & cheese, but we all know how easy it is to overdo it.

So how does this meal live up? Well, this is real macaroni & cheese. No fake boxed crapola, no cheese “powder”, no dyes. This uses REAL cheese, REAL milk. So, it tastes like REAL macaroni & cheese! It’s very creamy, cheesy, and buttery tasting. The cheese adheres well to the elmo pasta, which is cooked nicely, not mushy but not too hard either. There’s a pretty generous portion of pasta in this meal too, i thought it would be a itsy bitsy amount of pasta, but nope, there are a lot of cheesy elmo faces ready to be eaten. As for the veggies, i would have liked more. The broccoli is not big at all, rather chopped up in little bits. The carrots are good though, soft and sweet. It’s a good compliment to the mac & cheese, but i wish there was more. To make it more filling i added an extra serving of vegetables and had some protein with it as well.

As for the nutrition, it’s pretty good! It’s 220 calories, 7 grams of fat (YES, SEVEN, and it’s made with REAL ingredients!), 33 grams of carbs, 5 grams of fiber, and 9 grams of protein. I was happy that the first ingredient was whole grain durum wheat for the pasta, not blanched wheat/refined flour. Yay! It’s also enriched with extra vitamins and minerals, like B vitamins, etc.

The only cons for this meal that i have is it skimps a little on protein (but as i said, i just had a little extra to round this out and make it more of a meal for my size), and it has 4 grams of saturated fat, probably from the heavy cream , cheddar cheese and butter oil in the ingredients. But most macaroni & cheese has about that amount of saturated fat, and at least this fat is from real cheese & butter and not fake stuff..

So if your craving mac & cheese, this will help your craving without helping your waistline fill out. Give it a shot- and enjoy the cute little elmo faces!

Organic Elmo Pasta (Organic Whole Grain Durum Wheat, Organic Durum Semolina, Vitamins & Minerals [reduced iron, niacinamide, zinc oxide, riboflavin, thiamine hydrochloride, pyridoxine hydrochloride, folic acid, cyancobalamin]), Cheese Sauce [water, heavy cream, cheddar cheese [cultured pasteurized milk, salt, enzymes, annatto color], nonfat milk, corn starch, butter oil, enriched wheat flour [flour, malted barley flour, niacin, reduced iron, thiamin mononitrate, riboflavin, folic acid], sea salt, natural flavor, torula yeast, xanthan gum, annatto color), Organic Carrots, Organic Broccoli.

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Filed under 4 Star, Earth's Best

Luna Cookies

luna

I looveee Clif bars and Luna bars are pretty good as well. I’m not too crazy about the soy crisp part (hence why i prefer clif bars), but Luna Bars do make some tasty flavors (like S’mores and Nuts over Chocolate!).
However, Luna came out with a new product, the Luna “Cookie”. It comes in 3 flavors, Chocolate Mint, Berry Pomegranate, and Peanut Butter Chocolate. They range from 130 to 150 calories, 2.5-6 grams of fat, 23-27 grams of carbs, 3-4 grams of fiber, and 3-4 grams of protein. They are all natural, whole grain snacks that are also fortified with vitamins and minerals.
Now on to the tasting…

Peanut Butter Chocolate- my favorite of the three. It’s creamy, peanut buttery, and nutty tasting. The cookie isn’t dry at all, its very moist. The chocolate drizzle on top also adds a nice touch. But when do you ever lose with a peanut butter chocolate combination? 🙂

Berry Pomegranate-  this one was fruity and sweet. It has pomegranates and goji berries packed in this little baby, boosting the antioxidant powers. The white drizzle on top was also sweet and had a hint of vanilla.

 

Chocolate Mint- i wasn’t too crazy about this one, but only because i’m not a minty person. BUT- if you like Girl Scout Thin Mints, you will like this cookie. The first bite is like “WOAH-MINTY”, but as you eat the rest of the cookie, the “mintyness” tones down, and the “chocolateyness” comes out. Here’s a pic of the Chocolate Mint Flavor…berry

Overall, these aren’t “cookies” per se. When opening the cookies, they don’t look like “cookies” either. They are square in shape and are cut down the middle, so there are two “bars”. It looks like a clif z-bar cut in half, to be honest, and each is chewy/moist due to the fig paste in them. I think these would be good for an light afternoon snack or something pre-workout because they are whole grain and have brown rice syrup in them.

Peanut Butter Chocolate-Organic Evaporated Cane Juice Syrup, Organic Rolled Oats, Organic Brown Rice Syrup, Organic Tapioca Syrup, Organic Oat Flour, Organic Peanut Butter, Organic Fig Paste, Organic Roasted Peanuts, Organic Flaxseed Meal, Organic Chocolate Chips (Organic Evaporated Cane Juice, Organic Cocoa Paste, Organic Cocoa Butter, Soy Lecithin, Organic Vanilla Extract), Organic Oat Fiber, Natural Flavors, Sea Salt, Baking Soda.

Berry Pomegranate-Organic Rolled Oats, Organic Oat Flour, Organic Brown Rice Syrup, Organic Tapioca Syrup, Organic Dried Blueberries (Organic Blueberries, Organic Evaporated Cane Juice Syrup, Organic Sunflower Oil), Organic Fig Paste, Organic Evaporated Cane Juice Syrup, Organic Pomegranate Juice Concentrate, Organic Flaxseed Meal, Organic Icing (Organic Cocoa Butter, Organic Rice Extract, Organic Vanilla Extract), Organic Goji Berries, Organic Oat Fiber, Organic Sunflower Oil, Natural Flavors, Baking Soda, Citric Acid, Sea Salt.

Chocolate Mint- Organic Brown Rice Syrup, Organic Evaporated Cane Juice Syrup, Organic Oat Flour, Organic Rolled Oats, Organic Tapioca Syrup, Organic Fig Paste, Organic Semi-Sweet Chocolate Chips (Organic Evaporated Cane Juice Syrup, Organic Unsweetened Chocolate, Organic Cocoa Butter, Lecithin, Natural Flavors), Organic Cocoa Powder (Processed with Alkali), Organic Flaxseed Meal, Organic Icing (Organic Evaporated Cane Juice, Organic Cocoa Butter, Organic Rice Extract, Organic Vanilla Extract), Organic Cocoa Powder, Organic Oat Fiber, Organic Natural Flavors, Baking Soda, Sea Salt, Natural Flavor.

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Filed under 4 Star, Luna/Clif Bar