Tags: flax plus

Perfect time for a Nature’s Path review, seeing as my GIVEAWAY for granola bars, granola, a box of cereal AND reusable tote is going on AS WE SPEAK (or, as you READ, rather). One of the granola bars a reader has a chance to win is the Mmmaple Pecan Flax Plus Granola Bar, which I was so kindly sent to review from Nature’s Path.

These granola bars come in several flavors, in different groups. The Sweet & Salty fans can try the Peanut Buddy, Mmmaple Pecan and Peanut Choco flavors, those of you who like yogurt bars can try Lotta’ Apricotta and Berry Strawberry, trail mix fans can try Sunny Hemp and Pumpkin-N-Spice, and chocolate lovers can try Chococonut.

Today, I’m reviewing the Mmmaple Pecan Flax Plus chewy granola bar. It has 10g of whole grains per serving, provides .33g of Omega 3’s per serving (25% daily reccomendation), is all natural, and organic too. I’m super excited, we all know I LOVE MAPLE SYRUP! (who doesn’t, really?)

Upon my first bite, my first thought really was Mmm! What a perfect name for this bar, “Mmm!” fits the bill!! It has a sweet, buttery taste to it, and reminded me of buttery waffles drizzled with maple syrup. Ohh..delicious. It was definitely more sweet than salty, but still provided a little salty flavor due to the pecans. I really liked how there were chunks of pecans, not just itty bitty pieces. It was a  nice “crunch” in the chewy granola bar, which provided more satisfaction. The maple-butter drizzle on top was the best part- rich and sweet. Why can’t companies SELL things like this on it’s own!? 🙂
On the down side, the bar is a little tiny (35 g), about the size of a Quaker Chewy granola bar, but a bit thicker. There also is 6 grams of fat and little protein for a bar that is 150 calories.

Overall, I give this bar 4 stars. It deserves 4 1/2 stars on taste alone, but considering that it didn’t really fill me up by itself, and is low in protein and fiber, it lost half a star. However, it really was delicious, and is perfect for a light snack with some yogurt or an apple! Don’t forget to enter the giveaway and try one of the new granola bars for yourself!! 🙂

1 bar is 150 calories, 6 grams of fat, 22 carbohydrates, 2 grams of fiber and 2 grams of protein.

Granola* (rolled oats*, evaporated cane juice*, soy oil*), tapioca syrup*, pecans*, brown rice flour*, maple icing* (evaporated cane juice*, palm kernel oil* and/or cocoa butter*, cultured buttermilk powder* (skim milk*, starter culture), flavor*, non-fat dried milk*, citric acid, caramel color*, natural maple flavor, sea salt, soy lecithin*, annatto extract*, tapioca starch*), invert cane syrup*, dried coconut*, flaxseeds*, acacia gum*, soy oil*, sea salt, evaporated cane juice*, maple syrup*, natural maple flavor, molasses*.  * indicates Organic

Anndd…
 we have a Guest Post!

Sandy Harris at www.diabeticsnacks.org has provided us with some health benefits Maple Syrup has to offer, and how it can help a serious disease, Diabetes!

“The Secret to Prevent Cancer and Diabetes with Maple Syrup

Are you looking for a natural solution to reduce the risk of diabetes and
slow down the growth of cancer cells?  Your search is probably over
because recent studies have shown that maple syrup holds the key to these problems. US researchers have found that maple syrup has the ability to
substantially decrease the risk of diabetes.

The syrup also showed great potential in slowing down the growth of
cancerous cells. Maple syrup has thirteen active antioxidant substances.
These antioxidants were previously unknown but were discovered only
recently.Because of these antioxidants, researchers have firmed up that
maple syrup has a great potential in fighting cancer growth, diabetes, and
infections.

An Effective Solution or Diabetes Sufferers

Considerable amounts of the phytohormone, abscisic acid, are found in
maple syrup. This acid is a powerful defense against diabetes and
metabolic syndrome, because it encourages the release of insulin through
pancreatic cells and enhances fat cells’ sensitivity to insulin.

Seeram revealed the results of his tests on Canadian maple syrup during
the annual meeting of the American Chemical Society in San Francisco.

Maple Syrup as the Best Anti Cancer Food

A study punished in the Journal of Medicinal Food showed that maple syrup
can significantly inhibit the growth of cancerous cells. This study was
conducted by Quebec scholars. It seeks to prove the impact of maple syrup
against cancer cells.

Based on the Quebec research, the growth of cancer cells can be inhibited
by maple syrup. Specifically, the syrup is very effective against brain,
prostate, and lung cancer. Unfortunately, maple syrup has minimal impact
against breast cancer growth.

A Delicious Option in Fighting Cancer and Diabetes

The following is from a study titled: Antioxidant Activity, Inhibition of
Nitric Oxide Overproduction, and In Vitro Antiproliferative Effect of
Maple Sap and Syrup from Acer saccharum, published in the Journal of
Medicinal Food, and written by Jean Legault, Karl Girard-Lalancette,
Carole Grenon, Catherine Dussault and André Pichette:

Maple sap and syrup from 30 producers in three Quebec, Canada, regions
were evaluated concerning the time of harvest and abstract antioxidant
activity, inhibition of nitric oxide (NO) overproduction and the
antiproliferative effect of ethyl acetate extracts.

The harvest time does not have an analytically notable incidence on
antioxidant activity of either maple sap or syrup extracts. Their Oxygen
radical absorbance capacity (ORAC) values are 12 +/- 6 and 15 +/- 5 mumol
of Trolox equivalents (TE)/mg, respectively.

A cell-based assay also confirmed the antioxidant activity. The ORAC assay
was also used to establish the antioxidant activity of pure maple syrup.
The results show the pure maple syrup ORAC value of 8 +/- 2 mumol of TE/mL
to be lower than the blueberry juice value of 24 +/- 1 mumol of TE/mL but
similar to the strawberry juice value of 10.7 +/- 0.4 mumol of TE/mL and
the orange juice value of 10.8 +/- 0.5 mumol of TE/mL.

Lipopolysaccharide-induced NO overproduction in RAW264.7 murine
macrophages was considerably inhibited by maple sap and syrup extracts. It
is believed that transforming maple sap into syrup enhances NO inhibition
action, because the syrup extract was considerably more active than the
sap extract.

The maple syrup extracts induced the highest NO inhibition at the season’s
end, and the darker syrup was more active than the clear syrup. This
indicates that the activity could be partially attributed to some colored
oxidized compounds.

Maple syrup extracts (50% inhibitory concentration = 42 +/- 6 mug/mL) and
pure maple syrup have a discriminating in vitro antiproliferative action
against cancerous cells.

Reference: Journal of medicinal food. 01/02/2010; ISSN: 1557-7600, OI:
10.1089/jmf.2009.0029″

Thanks, Sandy! 🙂 Don’t we all love maple just a little bit more ?

12 Jan 2010, Comments (1)

Nature's Path Instant Hot Oatmeal

Author: healthnuttxo

Ohhh how I lovee oatmeal. It really is the perfect breakfast food- you can play it up any way you want. Add fruit, peanut butter, yogurt, milk, maple syrup, chocolate chips… Or, even plain jane style with a pat of all natural butter and a sprinkle of sugar on top. It really warms and fills you up and gives you plenty of energy.

But- what about those days you just don’t have time to cook good ol’ Quaker over the stove top? That’s usually where Instant oatmeal comes in. Boil some water, pour, stir, enjoy. Or, for those of you who don’t have ANY time to spare (or you lazy-bones out there 😛 ), the microwave helps. However, usually instant oatmeal leaves me unsatisfied. The portion is tiny, the sugar content is high, and it’s just not as good.

So that’s why I was excited to try the Instant Hot Oatmeal from Nature’s Path. I love Nature’s Path and have done several reviews of their products- all of them with positive results. They are a brand I know I can trust to bring me delicious and nutritious foods that will sustain me and my grumbling tummy 🙂

Nature’s Path oatmeal comes in several varieties, but I tried the Maple Nut, Apple Cinnamon and Multigrain Raisin Spice that comes in the variety pack. It also comes in Flax Plus, but I have yet to try that flavor. What I was first happy about was that each packet has more than traditional oatmeal packets have. The Nature’s Path brand provides 50g of oatmeal as compared to 30g that I normally see. You can tell it gives you more too when you pour it in the bowl- a nice change.

Maple Nut– first off, this oen smelled awesome. You could literally smell the maple syrup through the packet, and I looooove Maple Syrup! When I poured the water the sweet maple smell also came through even stronger. I couldn’t wait to dig in 🙂 There was also actual pieces of hazel nuts in the oatmeal. Not too many, but it added an unexpected bit of flavor. It was the right amount of sweetness-not too sugary and was actually pretty satisfying given it was instant oatmeal. 4 stars

Apple Cinnamon- Growing up, Quaker Apple Cinnamon was always my favorite flavor. I just loooved the little bits of apples (and would often eat them all before my mom even poured the hot water in the bowl!). Which is why I was slightly disappointed with this one. There were only a few apple pieces, and it wasn’t really that sweet. It was very smooth texture wise though, not as “blobby” as instant can sometimes be. To jazz this one up a bit, I added some raisins and some stevia and it was perfect. All it needed was a little boost 🙂  3 stars

Multigrain-Raisin Spice- I wasn’t sure I was going to like this one. It wasn’t just oats after all- it was wheat flakes, raisins, corn meal and oat flakes all together. But I gave it a shot, and I am glad I did! It was my favorite of the 3, and the sweetest 🙂 I looved the raisins, they were nice, plump and juicy. The oatmeal actually thickens up quite nicely if you let it sit a little bit, and was more hearty than regular oatmeal.  The “crunchy” wheat flakes added some texture as well. It reminded me of an oatmeal cookie in a bowl. Definietly goign to buy this one again and again. 5 stars

Overall, a pleasant experience with Nature’s Path Instant Hot Oatmeal. I’ll give it 4 stars all together. They provide you with a little more sustenance than traditional instant oatmeal, and are really good paired with some toast & peanut butter or jam, some fruit, or both for a nutritious breakfast (or pre-workout meal like I did!!). I want to try more of their flavors, like the Optimum Brand in Cranberry Ginger. Yum!

Maple Nut & Apple Cinnamon- 1 packet is 210 calories, 2.5-4 grams of fat, 38-40 carbohydrates, 4 grams of fiber, 5 grams of protein.

Multigrain-Raisin Spice- 1 packet is 180 calories, 1 gram of fat, 39 carbohydrates, 4 grams of fiber, 4 grams of protein.

Maple Nut-Organic rolled oats, organic evaporated cane juice, organic hazelnuts, natural flavor, sea salt.

Apple Cinnamon-Organic rolled oats, organic evaporated cane juice, organic dried apple, organic cinnamon, sea salt, natural flavor.

Multi-grain Raisin Spice-Organic rolled oats, organic wheat flakes, organic evaporated cane juice, organic raisins (coated with organic sunflower oil), organic brown rice flour, organic corn meal, organic cinnamon, sea salt.

Hey you know what goes good with oatmeal? APPLESAUCE! enter this giveaway now!!

Also- how do you like your oatmeal? rolled oats? Instant? What’s your favorite brand!?

Bored of my usual granola bars, i decided to give Nature’s Path Organic Chewy Granola Bars a try. They come in many flavors, but i received the Flax Plus Pumpkin flavor to try. This bar has 0g trans fats, is WHEAT FREE, and is low in sodium. There are 15 grams of whole grain or more per serving, so i figured i would eat this bar with some raisins as a pre-workout breakfast. It’s a pretty hefty bar too, it’s thick, too, ( it’s 40g) which i like because i like to feel like i’m EATING something, not like i’m eating a thin nothing that won’t satisfy me.

So after munching on a bite of this bar, the first word i thought of was YUM! It’s sweet, chewy and moist. There are flax seeds and pumpkin seeds dispersed throughout the bar, but they aren’t hard at all so they don’t take away from the chewyness of the bar. It reminds me of a healthier rice krispie treat with the consistency, but it’s very good. I think the sticky/chewiness is due to the organic tapioca syrup and invert cane syrup that are used in the bar.

After eating this bar i felt satisfied. It was light on my tummy, but didn’t leave me feeling hungry. I was also happy that i eating flaxseeds- we all know the nutritional punch flaxseeds provide. 400 omegas per bar! woo! With the raisins, it provided me the perfect amount of energy for my cardio kickboxing class, and i wasn’t starving after class either. I will definitely be buying these again! (as there’s only 5 in a box and i only have 2 left!!)

Each bar is 160 calories, 4.5 grams of fat, 37 carbohydrates, 3 grams of fiber, and 3 grams of protein. I wish there was a weee bit more protein, but i’m not complaining. This bar ROCKS!

Organic tapioca syrup, Organic rolled oats, Organic brown rice flour, Organic evaporated cane juice, Organic pumpkin seeds, Organic invert cane syrup, Organic flax seed, Organic soy oil, Organic acacia gum, sea salt, Organic spice, Organic molasses, Organic rice bran extract.

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