Popcorn is by far my favorite snack (this post is still not biased!!). I was sent 3 flavors of a brand of popcorn I have never heard of, or even seen in stores, for free. Live Love POP sent me Lime Fresco, Sea Salt, and Truffle Salt popcorn, all made with minimal ingredients, and waist line friendly (30 calories per cup!).

The popcorn comes in brown bags that were both easy to open and close to stay fresh. I like that it had a nice sturdy bag, but also a natural feel, and had a zipper built in the bag. My number one pet peeve with snacks is that the cheap plastic breaks and then you have a bag ripped down the middle, thus, either snacks all over the floor from improper opening or stale snacks. BOOO!

I decided to try the Truffle Salt flavor first. And boy was I not disappointed! It was SO good! I never had truffles, or truffle salt, so I wasn’t sure what to expect. However, this popcorn had a lot of flavor and almost reminded me of a garlic knot. Garlic knot flavored popcorn for 30 cals a cup? COUNT ME IN! I did not miss the butter or anything on this popcorn, flavor was covered! It also had a good amount of salt, but not too much. My only complaint was that bag was too small! heh! 4 1/2 stars

Next up, the Sea Salt. This one was honestly pretty bland. I know it had no other flavor really except salt, but it was even lacking in the salt department. It was crunchy and fluffy popcorn, which kept me eating the rest of the bag, but I wouldn’t buy this one in the future if I had the chance. Not enough salt to have a sea salt flavor. 3 stars

Lastly, Lime Fresco.

This one I had high hopes for, especially after the Truffle Salt flavor. It sounded semi exotic, and a new flavor I never tried when it came to popcorn! The popcorn was a bit odd. It had a lime flavor, some bites more potent than others, that was a bit sour, mixed with some salt flavor. The flavor reminded me of a lime rub you would put on chicken to grill with. It got better as I ate more of it, and although it wasn’t my favorite, it wasn’t bad. I feel like a touch of butter would have been perfect, but again, 30 cals a cup a can’t really complain! 3  stars

Overall, I like the popcorn! I would LOVE to have more of that truffle flavored popcorn and love to see if Live Love POP has any more flavors to try. I think they would make a really good sweet flavored popcorn, because I like the direction they are going in! These popcorns are vegan, all natural, and GMO free :)

Summer is the perfect time to sit outside, have a BBQ with friends, and eat a variety of snacks. Well…I suppose snacking is a year round thing, but go with me on this one!

I got JD’s Salsa in Seconds Hot and Mild salsa mix for free to try for a review. The mix comes with instructions to make their traditional salsa, or you can use the powdered mix to make a dip. I chose to make the dip with the hot and mild salsa mixes since our household seems to prefer that over salsa. And well…I was craving dip :D

So I mixed up some sour cream, mayonnaise and the mix according to the package’s instructions and made two separate bowls. I let it sit in the fridge for a few hours to let the flavors settle in.

The Hot dip definitely had some spice and heat to it. It had a lot of flavor but wasn’t salty at all. There was a nice oniony flavor as well that was rather predominant. My family was a fan of this one, and we used Tostito’s plain chips to taste them with.

The mild dip I happened to prefer over the spicy one. It was more garlic-y in flavor, not too salty, and again had a good onion flavor. I liked this one better because I am not a fan of spicy, but my family preferred the other one better.

I recommend letting the dip sit in the fridge for an hour or so. I tried the dip once I made it, and then a few hours later and the flavors were much better. Both dips were super creamy, had a lot of flavor, but not too much, and were a good companion to the plain chips. A yummy summer snack, or good for eating during the World Cup! I never thought to mix mayo with sour cream for a dip base, but it did not disappoint with the salsa mix.

Overall, we liked it! And it was super easy to make. Worth a try if you like salsa, or dips with chip and are looking for something new. The mix came with a LOT of powder, and only a tablespoon or so was needed for a whole bowl of dip, so it will last you a while or be good for  big parties. 3 1/2 stars

Today’s review will be of a supplement! I got contacted to try a product by Calamari Ink Products for Immune support. Who wouldn’t want that?!? In today’s society, let’s be real here, people are GERMY! I’ve seen some nasty things people do in public (I’m talking to you nose pickers and people who don’t wash your hands!) which only spreads germs to the innocent ones or even those who are immunocompromised like myself (I’m a diabetic).

According to the bottle, this product is the first to use squid ink. Other ingredients in this product include Chitosan, Ganoderma Powder, Oyster Extract, Green Tea Extract, Raspberry Ketones, Haematococcus Pluvialis (algae extract) and Selenium.

So upon opening the bottle, a caveat for all would be to NOT smell the product directly. FISHY FISHY FISHY! The pills are black, which is weird only because I’ve never had a black pill before, but then again it IS made with squid ink.

The pills are squishy, easy to swallow, and have almost a berry like taste to them. They did not cause any stomach distress, or any repeating “fish oil” type of burps that other sea or fish based products can cause (like the only downside to fish oil!!)

What did this product do? I can’t really tell. While it is an immune support, and was not sick for the duration of taking the product, I can’t really say this is a miracle pill that will prevent you from getting sick or if it was chance and coincidence to not get sick. But hey, I’m a skeptic. I must point out that there were sick people in the area, and still did not get sick, so it COULD be the pill, or it COULD be coincidence. As a plus, this pill had no negative side effects.

Overall, 3 1/2 stars. I would need to take it for a longer duration I think, rather than just a 2 months, to see it’s affect on immune support. And hey, If I get sick now that I won’t be taking the pill I miiiiiight just go out and get another bottle. Better safe than sorry :)

Hey peeps!

I got two new flavors of Oikos Frozen Yogurt sent to me to try for free for a review. I was certainly excited! I was a frozen yogurt JUNKIE in my freshman year of college. I also didn’t count macros- I only counted calories back then. So I thought it was perfectly acceptable to eat a bowl of frozen yogurt loaded with toppings as long as I stayed in my calorie range (LOL!!). I was also a cardio bunny at the time and barely lifted a weight…oh, what a sad, sad time for me. Haha. If you like cardio, I am not knocking it, I just LOVE weight lifting!!

ANYWAY!

Off topic…because that’s how I normally do ;D… onto the fro yo! I put both flavors in a bowl

I tried the Chocolate first. It was creamy, soft and tasted just like ice cream! It was certainly sweet, and had a predominant dark chocolate flavor. It was smooth, refreshing, and very, very good! It tasted almost like those fudge Popsicles on a cardboard stick I used to eat when I was little. However, it was super creamy and not icy at all! I wouldn’t have known it was frozen yogurt if the carton didn’t say so :) 4.5 stars

Onto the Key Lime flavor… this one was also refreshing and sweet. It tasted honestly JUST like a key lime flavored yogurt. So if you like that flavor, you would like this ice cream. It was tangy and had a little zing at the end, that I thought might be ginger but it was not listed on the ingredient list. It was good, but I wouldn’t buy it in the future. Not my cup of tea. 3 stars

Overall, I like these! The chocolate is the way to go in my opinion. But I would love to sample more flavors! I generally stay away from sweets because of my Diabetes, especially low fat/ high sugar ones like this because of the glycemic spike, but a few tastes every now and then is awfully nice after a hard day at the gym or a sweaty, sunny day. Enjoy your day guys!

3 Jun 2014, Comments (0)

Klara’s Gourmet Cookies

Author: Healthnuttxo

The nice people over at Klara’s Gourmet Cookies sent me some yummy cookies to try for free. Being a Diabetic I try not to eat sweets, but I allow myself some nibbles every now and then for events like this- a review!! :D

I got a nice assortment and was excited to try! Let’s begin :)

Vanilla Walnut Crescent-

These are so cute! They are tiny cookies, powdery, soft yet crunchy, but not crispy in texture. They had just the perfect amount of sweetness and powdered sugar. They are light and sweet, with a vanilla flavor. There is a tiny walnut aftertaste, but not too much. It is a nice little most dinner snack and great with a cup of tea! They are actually so good I wanted to keep eating them, but watching my diet I gave the rest to my Mama, who happily obliged :) 4.5 stars

Chocolate Macaroon- These are soft and chewy, and had a strong coconut flavor. The chocolatey flavor is predominately milk chocolate, and these cookies are very sweet! It has flaked coconut in it, so I would only eat these if you are a fan of coconut! Gluten free and all natural. 4 stars


Ginger Shortbread- This cookie was spicy! It was a soft cookie, not too sweet, and it lacked shortbread flavor. In fact, you cannot really taste the shortbread part of the cookie at all. There was a “raisin” texture in the cookie, which I found out was actually pieces of ginger. But there was certainly some HEAT!!! It cleared up my sinuses after eating just one cookie. It reminded my friend of a “soft ginger snap” flavor. This one gets 2 stars, I wasn’t really a fan.

Lemon Poppy Shortbread- this is a soft cookie, a little dry, and crumbly. The smell is a nice lemon- the flavor, is, well, disappointing. It has this overwhelming metallic taste to it, with slight lemon undertones. Not sweet, or buttery in flavor. Just really a fail. I had a bite or two and then threw the rest away. My friend also was not a fan. Leaves a bad aftertaste as well. This is my first 1/2 star rating. I do not recommend this cookie, and I really did not like it.

Coconut Macaroon-

Insanely good!! These were phenomenal! They were very sweet, chewy, and had a very nice honey and vanilla flavor. They were dense and chewy, and almost had a meringue aftertaste. Gluten free. The outsides of the cookies had a nice little crunch to it from the caramelized sugar. These were literally SO good, I had to give the rest to my Mom again, who again, happily obliged. 4 1/2 stars


Overall, Klara’s Gourmet Cookies has potential! Their macaroons are amazing. The other cookies were OK. But still worth a try. Let me know if you have tried these before and which is your favorite!

20 May 2014, Comments (0)

AQUAhydrate Electrolyte Enhanced Water

Author: Healthnuttxo

AQUAhydrate reached out to me and asked if I wanted to try their Electrolyte Enhanced Water. I happily obliged- I am an avid gym goer, and even with the warm weather it is easy to have an electrolyte imbalance whether you sweat out a lot of sodium, don’t eat enough potassium, etc. So I got sent a few bottles of their Electrolyte Enhanced Water, along with this cute package of a hat, sunglasses, and a tote! Thanks guys!

This water has a pH of 9+, so it is on the basic side from a pH scale of 1-14. 7 is a neutral rating, and anything below 7 is considered more acidic (think lemon juice!). According to the label, “normal bottled water” has a pH rating of about 7.5, and this water has one in the 9-10 range. If you would like to read more about why they have a higher pH level, please visit their website here.

There are some trace minerals in the water as well. Magnesium, Selenium, Manganese, Molybdenum, Chloride, Chromium, Copper and Zinc are all added but in very teeny amounts.

As for the taste? This water is great! I know, I know… Uh…it’s water? But TRUST ME I have had some nasty bottled water before. You CAN taste the difference. This water tastes super crisp and fresh,and has a very clean feel to it. I loved it. I received about 4 bottles of the water and drank it right away…and then noticed the difference when I went back to my other normal bottled water. Poland Spring..I love you man, but Aqua Hydrate may be your close cousin for top flavor in my opinion.

Overall, I like it! The bottle is thick, so I wonder if that’s to help with the pH at all… or flavor… but if it’s not that should change! However it is 100% recyclable so there’s a plus. I would buy this if I saw it in stores. Now I have two brands of bottled water that I enjoy. Everyone loves a little dihydrogen monoxide! (heh heh, Chem joke)

I got some samples to try for free from Thin Slim Foods! This company makes desserts, breads, bagels and more that are lower in calories and carbs than traditional fare. I was lucky enough to get a loaf of the Honey and Plain bread, as well as 2 of the brownies to try.

I was definitely intrigued by these foods. Being a Diabetic, I try to keep my carbohydrates on the lower side, as it allows for better blood sugar control (carbs= the devil for me sometimes!). Don’t get me wrong, I DO miss my breads, bagels, etc. so it is nice to hear of companies that make products that are lower in carbs and calories!

First things first…the brownie! I haven’t had a full brownie in ages. I bake a lot, but seldom eat what I bake- and moreso taste it so make sure it is good, and give it away for others to enjoy.

The brownie is 45 calories, 20 carbohydrates (8 of which is fiber), 0 grams of sugar, 10 sugar alcohols, and 6 grams of protein. It’s a nice thick sized brownie…and the whole thing 45 calories? I was skeptical.

I bit into it. It was definitely a cakey brownie, with a strong cocoa powder flavor. It was on the dry side, and a little pasty. It had a sweetness to it- but you could tell it wasn’t from sugar, but rather from a non caloric sweetener. Being a diabetic, I can spot that flavor miles away! I like it, and sort of am forced to like it since I can’t eat sugar, but it’s definitely not for everyone. The brownie is lackluster, but it is chocolately. I think it needs a smear of peanut butter or some sugar free chocolate chips thrown in there to be more appetizing. 2  stars.

Next up, the Honey Bread.

As you can see…this bread is tiny! Each piece is a little smaller than the size of my hand. I decided to make an egg white and cheese sandwich with it. So I toasted the bread from frozen, put some brummel and brown butter on it, and made a sammy!
The bread is a bit bland, but versatile since you can pretty much use it for any type of sandwich or spread. It had a nice crunch and was still fluffy after toasting. It tasted almost like a rye bread, but less dense. It had a very very TEENY flavor of honey…nothing noticeable for sure. I had a very small blood sugar spike, about 10 mg/dL, but I also have to factor in the fact I had eggs and cheese which will contribute to something.
Considering this is a low carb bread…and I’ve had nasty ones before…this one is really good. Small, but good. I would buy it again. 3 1/2 stars

1 slice is 50 calories, 2 grams of fat, 8 grams of carbs (7 of which are fiber), 0 grams of sugar, and 7 grams of protein.

Lastly, the Plain Bread.

To be fair, I made the same sandwich.

This bread is pretty much identical to the Honey one, but very very slightly less sweet. It had more of a Rye Bread flavor, but generally was still a bland bread. It was still good for the sandwich, but lacked flavor. I enjoyed the Honey one more because even though the Honey flavor was minimal, it was still noticeable. 3 stars

Overall, I think this company has some good stuff. I would love to try more in the near future, and am happy to report little to no blood sugar spikes. I also like the added protein in these products. Helps me hit my daily quotas!

4 May 2014, Comments (2)

KIND Chewy With A Crunch bars

Author: Healthnuttxo

Hey guys!

I got a nice shipment of new Chewy with a Crunch bars, courtesy of KIND, to do a review on! I used to be a KIND addict- they had they’re yummy granola bars with the nuts in them at my dining hall. I would use up a LOT of my “dining dollars” on those babies!

So even though my diet has strayed and I do not eat those bars as frequently anymore, I was still pretty excited to try these new bars.

The Chewy with a Crunch bars are gluten free, made with 100% whole grains, are non GMO, and made with minimal ingredients. So let’s get started!

Peanut Butter Dark Chocolate- This one was not too sweet, and had a mild peanut butter flavor. It was a little blander than I would have wanted or expected it to be (peanut butter chocolate is a strong combo in my eyes!) but it was still rather yummy. The chocolate chips added a very nice touch and were definitely necessary. I liked how this bar had a nice crunch but was still chewy- living up to it’s name! 3 1/2 stars

Dark Chocolate Chunk- this one was my favorite! It tasted nearly identical to a Quaker Chewy Chocolate Chip bar, but a tad less sweeter. It was very good! It had a nice vanilla flavor in the background, and the dark chocolate chunks actually tasted like milk chocolate to me, which was a plus in my eyes since I prefer milk chocolate. 4 1/2 stars

Oats & Honey with Toasted Coconut- this bar was pretty good! I liked that you could taste both the toasted coconut, some mild sweetness from the honey, and that it had a baked from the oven granola kind of taste. It had a nice amount of sweetness, and I found it crunchier than the other bars. 3 1/2 stars

Vanilla Blueberry- this one had moderate flavor, was a little bland, but was certainly saved by the baby blueberries scattered throughout the bar. The vanilla flavor was sort of muted, but once you bit into a blueberry, it lightened up the whole bar, and made it much better. The blueberries themselves were tiny and sweet, and had a good flavor. 3 stars

Maple Pumpkin Seeds with Sea Salt- I found this bar awkwardly salty. It was good, but it had an off flavor. It wasn’t too sweet, and it had a nice amount of pumpkin seeds scattered throughout the bar. The maple flavor is off…and maple is one of my favorite flavors. Overall the bar was lackluster, and I was not a fan. 2 stars

Nutritional information varies per bar(but is roughly the same). Here is the Nutritional Information for the Oats & Honey with Toasted Coconut

150 calories, 4 grams of fat (1.5 saturated), 95 mg sodium, 25 carbohydrates, 3 grams of fiber, 7 grams of sugar, 3 grams of protein.

Whether you are dieting, watching your salt intake, or just like to cook, spices and seasonings have the utmost importance when it comes to giving bland foods some flavor (think: chicken breast, egg whites, etc.)

Spike sent me some of their Gourmet Natural Seasonings. Two of my favorites have been the Onion-Magic! and Garlic-Magic! flavors. Both of these are salt free- which is great because I live in a household where high blood pressure is common, and excess table salt is NOT needed. (I actually have LOW blood pressure, and need the salt, but I was interested in trying these out anyway!)

First one up- the Garlic Magic! This one had a very nice garlic flavor. It was not salty, as it is salt free, but what i liked about it was that you could really intensify the garlic flavor in a dish, without adding a load of sodium. So my entire family could eat whatever we seasoned the Garlic-Magic! with, and anyone who wanted additional salt could add it to their own dish. I also liked that it didn’t leave a bad aftertaste or unsettled feeling. Garlic (for me at least) sometimes causes indigestion, and this spice left me feeling good afterwards. I sprinkled it on shrimp and broccoli with a little butter for a nice tasty, salt free, low carb dish!

Next, the Onion- Magic! My mother actually took this one from me she liked it so much (thief!!!). We sprinkled it in mashed potatoes, and then used it on home fries. It was good!! It smelled delicious when it was cooking, and had a pleasant onion flavor, without being salty or overpowering.

Lastly, we tried the 5 Herb- Magic! Again, it was salt free! We sprinkled this one on chicken breast (ugh…I am so SICK of chicken breast! Gotta keep it interesting, right??) I thought it was a great compliment to the chicken. It had a strong flavor from the herbs, but was not overpowering in the slightest. This particular spice blend had rosemary, basil, oregano, thyme and marjoram. I am 100% unsure what marjoram is, but it sounds pretty cool, so there you go ;)

Overall, I think these are worth a try, especially if you have to watch your salt intake. As a total, I give them 4 star rating.

[Below is Nutritional Information for the Garlic-Magic! spice]


Time for a review…of my absolute kryptonite! Peanut butter!

Seriously though…I can refuse any baked good in front of me, but put a jar of peanut butter and a spoon nearby, and you’ll find me melting.

I go through the temptation  thoughts like Spongebob with water when he visits Sandy for the first time.
“I don’t need it…
I don’t need it…
I DEFINITELY don’t need it…

… I   N E E D   IT !!! ”

But, alas, here I am reviewing two peanut butters from Pacific Beach. I will say I DID practice portion control, measured on my scale, and then left the jar in the other room so I didn’t finish a jar in 2 days (I made it to 3!!! [just kidding!])

The first one up- the “Our Signature” peanut butter spread.
2 tbsp is 152 calories, 12 g fat (3 saturated), 51 mg sodium, 9 grams carbs, 1 gram fiber, 6 grams sugar,  4 grams protein.
This one is gluten free (WAS gluten free I should say…that jar is long gone)
This…was unbelievable. I’m not going to lie, I am biased with peanut butter bc well I love peanut butter, but THIS was SO GOOD. It was sweet and creamy, but also had bits of peanuts in it so it had a bit of a crunch. It had a white chocolate flavor to it, was a bit buttery tasting..UGH it was SO GOOD! It had the perfect balance of sweetness too-not too sweet where it felt sugary. Just right. The only thing that kept my guilt at bay was it was 152 calories for 2 Tbsp as opposed to the usual 190 cals. WOO!!
5 stars

Next up, the Organic Valencia peanut butter.
2 tbsp is 168 calories, 14 g fat (2 saturated), 58 mg sodium, 6 grams carbs, 1 gram fiber, 7 grams protein.

This one was also tasty, although definitely more moderate in flavor. I think it could have used a tad more salt, and was a teeny bit bland. But, still a good peanut butter. Again, it was creamy but also had chunks of peanuts in it giving it a bit of a crunch. A nice thick spread, that could easily be spread on bread or eaten from the jar (somehow I always dangerously choose the latter…). I think this is a good nut butter to pair with jelly on a sandwich bc it’s a good base. This one is gluten free and sugar free. I almost wish it had a pinch of sugar or something to bring out more flavor. 3 1/2 stars.

Overall, some tasty treats! I would love to try more from Pacific Beach, because I think their other flavors sounds phenomenal as well. However, currently trying to lean out for summer and I have NO self control around this stuff…bc it is too damn good.

How many of you are peanut butter addicts like myself? It’s so good it hurts!! D:

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