Sari Foods Company: Nutritional Yeast Flakes, Vitamin C from Acerola Cherries and Spirulina Powder #Review

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It’s not just because I told myself in 2014 that in 2015 I want to eat better, a la New Year’s resolution, but I have been looking for ways to add nutrition to my diet via super foods. The only way to know if the “buzz” is real, is to get out there and try it.

Super Foods and what makes them super duper is really in the eye of the beholder, however the general rule is a product that is naturally fortified with an enormous amount of vitamins, minerals, omegas, and/or antioxidants, and so forth. As I ventured down the super foods rabbit hole, I literally realized that I needed to go beyond the Goji and Acai berries I was so comfortable with already eating and drinking. I needed to go old school and give Spirulina powder a try, to the ultimate cherries called Acerolas. Yeast flakes is new to me and when the package stated it tastes like cheese, I know I love cheeses but unsure if a yeast flake had the “moo flavor” I was looking for. Time to get out of my comfort zone!

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Spirulina Powder– Sari Food’s provides you with a 100% purely organic powder, so that is a positive beginning. Spirulina is not new to the world of super foods that even the Aztecs consumed such a gem. The plant grows and thrives in water beds/lakes and is magical on it’s own, where it even creates it’s own feed so it can thrive. I was already intrigued by the idea of something creating nutrients for itself and to me that was like have an endless supply of energy bars in your purse! The protein level is insane when you look at the amount of product that delivers such a high content. Sarii Food’s Spirulina has 6.5 grams of protein for every 10 grams of servings, that equates to one heaping tablespoon, and it does not stop there:

You have Iron and 6.0 mg, which is 33% of your D.V.
Vitamin A 27 mg, so you get 1800% of your D.V. and we are still on 1 tablespoon’s worth.
Vitamin B12 15mcg., giving you 250% of your D.V.
Vitamin B2 comes at 450 mcg., and 28% of your D.V.
Thiamine (Vitamin B1) is 350 mcg., and provides 25% of your D.V.
Niacin, known as Vitamin B3 is 3 mg and 15% of your D.V,
Magnesium is 48 mg, and 12% of your D.V.
Vitamin K is 40 mg and a generous 50% of your D.V,
Folic Acid is an astonishing 450 mcg, and comes to 113% of your D.V.
Plus, Total Carotenoids at 30 mg
Chlorophyll at 60 mg
Phycocyanin at 800 mg
Gamma-Linolenic Acid
DHA at 70 mg (Docosahexaenoic acid) which helps with brain function and is an Omega-3 fatty acid, comes at 70 mg

Retail Price Point: $23.95 via Amazon for a 16 ounce package, which provides 45 servings .

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That is a lot in just 1 heaping tablespoon. I tried the product by adding it to smoothies and to my morning power breakfast, which is mixed with fruit, yogurt and granola. The taste did not affect my breakfast in a negative way and by week one, I did notice I felt better but I did not stop taking my daily supplements, so Sari Foods’s Spirulina really filled the void that was missing and/or needed in my daily nutrition intake. The protein is plant based and is even rated better than what you get from legumes and without the bloating effects or feeling too full from eating beans. Studies wise I found very little when it came to having a negative impact from Spirulina and because I can’t beat the boost of energy I have been experiencing, I am addicted to feeling better so will continue it’s use.

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Vitamin C powder from Acerola Cherries– Sari Food’s again provides us with a 100% USDA certified, Organic product. The package states that just 1 Acerola Cherry gives you the vitamin C of 65 oranges. Okay, you got my attention! The Acerola cherry tree is found in many regions like Brazil, where so many super foods derive from to California, Florida, Texas and certain regions in South America. The fruit tends to deteriorate quickly once ripe, so cultivation and process is key in making sure you get the most out of every red little gem the tree produces. When I stated quickly deteriorating, think of when you cut into an apple or potato and the Acerola cherry comes near that. Within 4 hours from just harvesting, a negative impact in appearance and in texture is already visible. That is one delicate little cherry but not when it comes to nutrition:

I mentioned the orange versus acerola statement above but to put it into perspective, this cherry juice gives you 13 times more Vitamin C than one glass of O.J.  Sari Food’s has made the impact even better by just 1 teaspoon giving you 500 mg, that is 833% of your D.V. The only other ingredient in their powder is organic and non-gmo Maltodextrin, so nothing gets between you and your Vitamin C!

Retail Price Point: $29.95 via Amazon for a 6 ounce package, which provides you with 58 servings.

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I found many benefits on-line upon reading and we already know what Vitamin C does for the body and protecting our immune system.  Some studies suggested aid with asthma, allergies, regulating blood sugar, shortening colds, helping with the aging impact of free radicals, to reducing cholesterol and heart disease.  The claims were broad and some with clinical back-up and some just anecdotal.  I gave the powder a try for 3.5  weeks and the one thing I was able to attribute to it’s intake, was better skin.  The month of February was the best looking clear skin I have had.  The powder is tart to sour like you would expect from a Vitamin C powder but the package suggested just a touch of coconut sugar would help if that was an issue.  I went with nectarines and once chopped, I added the powder and it actually improved the taste of my fruit versus needing to fix anything with the powder.  I will be taking this when stress is coming my way, which in my world is on a weekly basis!

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Nutritional Yeast FlakesSari Food’s gives you a Vegan product that is Non-GMO and Gluten Free.  Yeast flakes provide everything from Potassium, Iron and a multitude of vitamins and minerals.  You have also a great amount of fiber, so it fills you up without the guilt!  Yeast is consumed for many reasons and used to amp up a dish’s nutritional value to some people who enjoy the flavor the product provides.

Retail Price Point: $12.95 via Amazon for a 8 ounce package, which provides 14 servings.

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The yeast flake product from Sari Food’s in non-fortified, meaning you get a natural product that is nourished from natural sources.  No fake vitamins or anything created in a lab to increase what is derived naturally!  The yeast has a whopping 18 amino acids and everything from Biotin, which helps with hair and nail growth to 352.0% of your D.V. of B5 Vitamin.  You just take 2 heaping tablespoons and add it to “almost” any dish.  I will say the scent of the product really in my opinion is more geared towards savory dishes.  The only yogurt based spread I could think of that would be pleasurable in taste, was when I made Gyros and combined the yeast flakes with Feta cheese.  We liked the change and especially on potatoes.  It really does amp up the protein content to 8.32 grams, which breaks down to 16.6% of your D.V., so I kept this in mind when cooking with proteins.  I know protein and especially clean protein is good for you but I also want only so much of it.  The fiber content makes digesting easy and especially if you are attempting to lose or just maintain a healthy weight.  This product may have limited me towards the savory dishes but then again everything else is geared towards sweetness in the diet and nutrition world, that I found it welcoming to have something I could add with most dinners.  The Yeast flakes in salads was another boost of flavor I was able to enjoy and especially on avocados!

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Get acquainted with the above products and with Sari Foods Company at:

 

I received the above product(s) free of charge from Sari Foods Company.  I am not obligated to provide a positive or favorable review, just my honest opinion.  My review is based on my experience with the product and/or brand, which may differ from yours.

 

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Smiley360: 5 Hour Energy Drink in Pink Lemonade #5HourGoesPink #Review

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I got an offer from Smiley360 recently. It was for a 5-Hour Energy shot. Um…yes please! Are you kidding me? This time of year? I’m dragging my tired little butt around trying to put things together for the holidays, for the home, for hubby, for the dog. Oh yeah, and if I have a spare second or two, a moment for myself. I quick pick me up, and pink lemonade flavored to boot? My only complaint at the time was I only got two.

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Now, I’ve tried 5-Hour Energy before. Let’s just say I wasn’t their biggest cheerleader. The flavor was…not great. Very bitter, hard to swallow. In fact, I couldn’t. Neither could hubby.We haven’t been back to it since. I had high hopes for the new push and new flavor. And while it was better, it was also still bitter, but not to the point of being unable to finish it. So it’s flavor grade is a solid “B”.

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As for the most important feature, the energy boost. With 200 mg of caffeine, as well as nearly 1700 mgs of other proprietary energy ingredients, and 540 mgs of B vitamins, you’d think it could send someone up the walls and hanging off the ceiling. However, that wasn’t the case for me. Maybe my tolerances are higher, maybe I just was expecting to have some jitters or shakes. Neither was the case, and if anything I was disappointed in not having that “superman” feeling where I flit around the house getting everything accomplished like The Flash. Oh well.

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5-Hour Energy also partnered with Living Beyond Breast Cancer to donate 5 cents from every bottle sold to LBBC, a non-profit organization dedicated to connecting people with trusted breast cancer information and community support. Just look for the bottle with the pink ribbon to help out, with a minimum guaranteed donation of $200,000. Not too shabby.

Connect with 5-Hour Energy on:

 

I received the above product(s) free of charge from Smiley360 and 5-Hour Energy.  I am not obligated to provide a positive or favorable review, just my honest opinion.  My review is based on my experience with the product and/or brand, which may differ from yours.

Swaggable: Belegenza ILLustrious Shampoo & Cleanser #Review

 

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I do not receive that many items when it comes to hair products, but so far the Belegenza line makes any room they are in smell so nice and clean. I have never heard of the brand but I always welcome anything new when it comes to hair care. I have very long hair that is a mixture of normal and fine in texture but not flat or thin…..it’s really just too much hair if you ask me. I pick-up static like a balloon would (frizz central) and the only two positives I can find is it does not break easily and so far no grays (yet) 🙂 You know how people have combination skin problems, well I have those too but also combination hair ones. At least I’m consistent!

I have been using Carol’s Daughter products and very happy but I’m always hunting for something different or better.

I read up on Belegenza and their products on-line. Belengenza’s (bel-a-jen’-za) name is made up of two Italian/Latin words, where Bel meaning beauty and Gen for genesis. The company’s website was very informative and they make hair products that fit everyone’s needs. Their products are gentle but effective and very in tune with nature and using natural ingredients.

Belegenza ILLustrious Shampoo & Cleanser: The shampoo is uses natural extracts that are derived from fruit and vegetables. You have anti-aging extracts like Sugarcane, Apple, Green Tea, Nettle, Sage, Rosemary, Comfrey and Rhizome Root. You also have Castor Beans, 3 types of Seaweeds and Vitamin E and Vitamin B6. No wonder it smells so good but the scent remains welcoming, not over perfume-y. The shampoo is also color safe and free of salt and sulfates. Nothing really synthetic or at all damaging to your hair or scalp. So far I really liked their ingredients and they use an Aloe Vera base versus just selling you products that are just mostly water.

Ingredients as listed on their site:
Aloe Barbadensis Leaf Extract, Disodium Laureth Sulfosuccinate (Vegetable based) , Sodium Cocoyl Isethionate (Coconut based), Cocamidopropyl Betaine (Coconut based), Hypnea Musciformis (Hawaiian Seaweed) Extract, Gelidiela Acerosa (Gulfweed Seaweed) Extract, Sargassum Filipendula (Red Mapleweed) Extract, Sorbitol, PEG-18 Glyceryl Oleate/Cocoate (Coconut based), Glycol Stearate (Vegetable based) , Honey, Secret Salon Ingredient, Silk Amino Acids, Hydrolyzed Wheat Protein, Saccharum Officinarum (Sugarcane) Extract, Citrus Medica Limonum (Lemon) Fruit Extract, Pyrus Malus (Apple) Fruit Extract, Camellia Sinensis (Green Tea) Leaf Extract, Urtica Dioica (Nettle) Extract, Salvia Officinalis (Sage) Extract, Rosmarinus Officinalis (Rosemary) Leaf Extract, Symphytum Officinale (Comfrey) Rhizome/Root Extract, Ricinus Communis (Castor) Seed Extract, Tocopheryl Acetate (Vitamin E), Pyridoxine HCL-5-Phosphate (Vitamin B6), Panthenol, Caprylyl Glycol, Ethoxydiglycol, Sorbic Acid (Rowanberry distillate), Polyquaternium-10 (Cellulose/thickener) , Phenoxyethanol, Tetrasodium EDTA(Mineral chelator), Citric Acid (Lemon), Phthalate-free fragrance.

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Performance: The product lathers up really good and even though I do not have color or chemically treated hair, the shampoo worked wonders. My hair was left feeling clean but not stripped. Very calming scent while you shower and a clean welcoming natural fragrance is left when hair dries. I liked how my hair not only looked but felt. The frizz level was very low and my hair just looks healthier. I tried both a natural (air) drying and then the second time used a blow dryer, again happy with both results.

Price Point: $22.00

I was satisfied and happy with the shampoo and it actually made me curious as to how a more suited for me formula would perform from Belegenza’s line of hair care products.

For more information on the above product or to view the full Belegenza line, please visit:

 

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I received the above product free of charge from Swaggable and Belegenza.  I am not obligated to provide a positive or favorable review, just my honest opinion.  My review is based on my experience with the product and/or brand, which may differ from yours.

Smiley360: Centrum Flavor Burst Multivitamin/Multiminerals Chews Review

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Being a Smiley360 member has it’s perks and one is being able to try new products. I was recently sent the Centrum Flavor Burst Vitamin and Mineral Chews, in Pineapple and Wild Grape flavors. I’m always about finding new ways to nourish the body because quite frankly, I get bored doing the same thing day after day. Variety is really what I seek and I have taken the gummy vitamins in the past, but not liking the idea of having gummy pieces stuck to my teeth right after I brushed them in the morning.

What a product is made of and how it tastes matters, especially if you will be taking something daily or several times through out the day. I do think in today’s market of supplements, just settling is not something you have to do anymore. There are so many products from drinks, chews, pills, to even infused chocolates….so I was eager to see what Centrum had to offer in this world of Vitamin and Minerals.

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Centrum Flavor Burst Chews come in several flavors and range in cost from $9.97 at Amazon for a bottle of 120 chews to Walmart’s price point of $7.97 for a 60 count bottle. The highest price point was at CVS for $12.49 for 120 chews, followed closely by Walgreens at $11.79 for the same count, so I suggest price matching and seeking the lowest cost before you buy because they vary greatly.

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I brought up the count because the suggested serving amount for an adult is 4 chews daily…sort of makes the bottle not last as long when most chews of this kind are formulated for 2 a day. The bottle will be disappearing at a fast rate but you can also adjust your intake by your needs and even adjust through out the day.

A Centrum Flavor Burst adult serving has the following daily values (4 Chews Count):

  • Vitamin A 2000 IU, providing 40% of your Daily Value
  • Vitamin C 60 mg, 100% DV
  • Vitamin D 800 IU, 200% DV
  • Vitamin E40 IU, 133% DV
  • Vitamin B6 2mg, 100% DV
  • Folic Acid 400 mcg, 100% DV
  • Vitamin B12 10mcg, 167% DV
  • Biotin 150 mcg, 50% DV
  • Pantothenic Acid 10 mg, 100% DV
  • Iodine 80 mcg, 53% DV
  • Zinc 5 mg, 33% DV

DV based on a 2,000 caloric diet

You can see with the above values that with most you meet or exceed the 100% suggested daily intake, so this is why I opted to adjust my serving by my nutritional needs and Centrum does facilitate that by breaking up the serving by 4 a day.

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Wild Grape Flavor:
This was my least favorite flavor because I picked up more of the vitamin taste and the aftertaste was just not pleasant. I also looked at the ingredient list and this particular flavor has Blue 2 Lake food coloring, while the other flavor I tested did not, so that turned me off on top of it being the worst tasting. I tried by day 3 chewing another and I met my limit with what this flavor had to offer…so not wild about it!

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Pineapple:
The Pineapple has a nice tropical taste and does not list any artificial food dyes. The dyes listed are derived from Annatto, which is a food dye derived from the seeds of the achiote tree and Beta-Carotene. Keeping it natural is what I seek so I liked this, plus like I mentioned the flavor is pleasant.

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Quick Note on the Pros: No water needed and you can adjust your intake on a daily basis because the adult serving is broken up into 4 chews. Pineapple was good tasting and the percentages on a daily values scale was not unfavorable. It’s more like a “Skittle’s” candy when it comes to texture, so no candy or gummy residue is left on your teeth after you chew.

Quick Note on the Cons: Both flavors I tasted contain Corn Syrup, Maltodextrin and Sucrose. I know Maltodextrin can be derived from barley and wheat, so this can be an issue for Celiac disease suffers. The Grape contains an artificial dye, plus it’s taste was unpleasant. Watch where you buy because the price fluctuates greatly and keep note of the count per bottle when comparing price points.

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I do have a coupon to share that saves you $2.00, so that is always a great start:

If you would like further information on Centrum Flavor Burst Multivitamin Chews, please visit them at:

I received the above product free of charge from Smiley360 and Centrum. I am not obligated to provide a positive or favorable review, just my honest opinion. My review is based on my experience with the product and/or brand, which may differ from yours.

Smiley Mission: Emergen-C

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I got the opportunity to try the some of the latest flavors of Emergen-C, thanks to Smiley (www.smiley360.com), and let me tell you, if I wasn’t already a fan, I certainly would be now!

A lot of times, with these “immune booster” drinks, they taste like some unholy combination of ground-up Flinstones vitamins and Alka-Seltzer.  Which is about as tasty as it sounds. That’s not the case with Emergen-C. You get a 1000mg of Vitamin C, a little jolt of energy from 7 B-vitamins, 24 different nutrients, antioxidants and electrolytes, and a glass full of great flavors that range from super orange, raspberry, blueberry-acai, cranberry-pomegranate, pink lemonade…the flavors go on and on. Chances are, there’s at least one for you! Did I mention they’re fizzy, too? Yeah, they’re fizzy. Score!

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As for the purported benefits, I can say that this is definitely a “your mileage may vary” situation, but I can tell you from experience that I rarely leave home without a glass of my Emergen-C. There’s a lot of yucky germs floating around out there in crowded places like grocery stores, malls, and movie theaters. People coughing, sneezing, generally being unclean, snotty, germ factories. I will always welcome a little kick to my immune system before wading through all of that.

I will say that I like mine with a little more water and sip throughout the day, where as hubby makes one small 8 oz. glass and chugs it. Weirdo. He loves the little kick he gets and the electrolytes and potassium for after strenuous activities. But I can safely say this is an Emergen-C household, for now and the immediate future!

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Check out Emergen-C and find your flavor or flavors:

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I received the above products free of charge from Smiley.  I am not obligated in providing a positive/favorable review, just my honest opinion.  My review is based on my experience with the brand and/or products, which may differ from yours.

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