Product Profile: My latest health and wellness picks
I’m always on the lookout for new and amazing health and wellness products for life in the kitchen, the gym and at home. Here are my current faves; a combination of some of the latest sample products (gifted) that have come across my desk for me to try out, and the products I’ve found myself that I can’t get enough of right now!
The Collective Organic Li’L Suckies
My 2-year-old is a huge fan of The Collective Suckies pouches so we’ve been buying them pretty much since she went on solids around 6 months as these yoghurts are made with all natural ingredients and have no added nasties.
One key focus when I’m purchasing food tends to be on the quality of ingredients/products we use. So when I was sent a selection of the new organic range to sample, Suckies got even better. Available in four flavours – Banana, Blueberry, Raspberry and Strawberry. A perfect minimal-mess addition to lunchboxes, find these 70g pouches in supermarkets nationwide (RRP $1.89).
Barker’s of Geraldine Fruit Spritzers
Just straight off the bat I’m going to say these are ridiculously delicious. I generally drink water, however, when you want a treat these refreshing, sparkling drinks are ready to go and contain 25% less sugar than other leading full-sugar carbonated drinks.
With no artificial colours, flavours or preservatives, these were the perfect solution as a non-alcoholic treat for this pregnant mama. Available in four flavours; Redcurrant, Rhubarb & Rosehip; Lemon, Lime, Cucumber & Mint; Ginger Beer with Lime; and Apple Cider with Elderflower (my personal favourite).
Barker’s of Geraldine Fruit Spritzers (RRP $4.49 for a 500ml bottle) are available in the fruit juice aisle of selected supermarkets.
GO Healthy range for better sleep
The lovely team at GO Healthy gifted me this sleep pack recently. If you’ve been following my blog for a while you know I don’t recommend supplements unless they’re something I think can be important for general use; for our household, magnesium is a staple as my husband often has issues with muscle cramps (usually from sports training) if he doesn’t take some after exercising, and I use it for better quality sleep.
It’s finally becoming increasingly recognised that the quality of sleep is just as important – if not more so – than the quality. This pack featured:
- GO Magnesium Sleep (RRP $32.90 for 60 capsules, RRP $54.90 for 120 capsules) designed to support a deep relaxed sleep, relax muscles and ease nervous tension.
- GO Cherry Sleep (RRP $24.90 for 30 capsules, RRP $39.90 for 60 capsules) for those who have trouble getting to sleep and/or staying asleep.
- GO Magnesium 1-a-day (RRP $19.90 for 30 capsules, RRP $34.90 for 60 capsules, RRP $54.90 for 120 capsules, RRP $79.90 for 200 capsules), a high-strength everyday formula to ensure you get your recommended daily intake that will help relax muscles, ease menstrual cramps and get a better sleep.
Available from health stores and pharmacies throughout New Zealand.
Weleda Kids 2in1 Shampoo & Body Wash
My toddler loves it when couriers turn up at our doorstep; it’s like Christmas every time. Imagine her delight when she received a sample for roadtesting that was addressed to her! I’ve bought a number of Weleda’s products over the years so I already had a good feeling about this one.
Their new Weleda Kids 2in1 Shampoo & Body Wash gently cleanses delicate skin and hair without drying the skin or irritating the eyes. It’s developed for kids by kids (and their parents) and is available in three kid-friendly, gorgeous scents. Created with nourishing ingredients and essential oils, all are dermatologically proven to be skin-friendly. Miss E tried out the Lively Lime and loved the smell of it.
Available in Very Vanilla, Lively Lime and Happy Orange (RRP $15.90 for 150ml) from weleda.co.nz, selected online retailers, health stores and pharmacies nationwide.
Macy and Tailor snack range
When these three samples arrived on my doorstep it was perfect timing for family movie night. This family-owned company hails originally from Blenheim and prides themselves on their artisanal snacks. I must confess, I’m a pretzel-a-holic and became quite obsessed with the crisp and delicate Pressed Pretzels (we tried the Salt variety but they also come in Pizza Seasoned). The Vege Crisps come in three unique flavours; Beetroot, Carrot & Parsnip, and Beetroot, Carrot & Parsnip.
It also helps that their full range is made with all natural ingredients, is vegan, dairy-free and contains no preservatives or GMOs.
Find Macy and Tailor Vege Crisps (RRP $3.89) and Pressed Pretzels (RRP $3.79) at selected New World, Pak n’ Save, Four Square and Fresh Choice supermarkets nationwide.
The Happy Snack Company Roasted Fav-va Beans
I found out about these from one of my personal training clients after she brought some for her toddler to eat during a training session and my daughter ended up scoffing most of them (oops).
Made from natural ingredients (mostly broad beans), they make a tasty protein-rich snack to lunchboxes. You can get them in large packs or snack packs, and in a variety of flavours. I’ve been buying ours from our local Huckleberry supermarket.
Praise condiments range
Just in time for barbecue and picnic season, the Praise range of condiments has been reintroduced back to New Zealand supermarkets.
The brand has stepped up to the plate as we increasingly pay more attention to what’s going into our food, so all their mayonnaise and aiolis have been reformulated to be made with fresh, free range eggs and the dressings have no artificial flavours, colours or preservatives.
Dressing options include French, Ranch, Balsamic, Caesar, Potato Salad and Thousand Island Dressing. Mayonnaise varieties include Whole Egg, Light and Olive Oil. And Aioli is available in Classic, Lemon, Intense, Chipotle (YUM) and Light. Available now in all leading supermarkets.
The Chia Co. Chia Seeds
Chia seeds popped into the health food scene relatively recently in the grand scheme of things, and are now a household name recognised for their amazing nutritional properties. Rich in omega-3, fibre and protein, you can easily add them to salads, smoothies, cereals and desserts. I was sent a pack of White Chia seeds to sample and road tested them in a recipe that was provided for Pistachio Chia Dukkha with Kumara Hummus – so quick and easy to prep, I know I’ll be doing it again soon.
Natural, ethical and sustainable, The Chia Co. Chia Seeds are available in White or Black (RRP $5.69 for 150g, RRP $16.99 for 500g, RRP $27.99 for 1kg) from naturalthings.co.nz, Moore Wilsons, Whole Heart, Bin Inn Auckland and selected health stores nationwide.
Please note: Although they can be eaten as-is, if you add chia seeds to your diet on a daily basis, PLEASE make sure you soak them sometimes, or at least drink plenty of water when you eat them. I have a friend who is a nurse and she’s seen many bowel blockages on her hospital watch from chia seeds soaking up water on their journey through the digestive tract if they are regularly eaten and not pre-soaked.
Wattie’s tinned Spaghetti and Baked Beanz with less added sugar
We don’t tend to eat these products in our household, though I grew up on them (like many other Kiwis!) and I know they are a staple in many NZ homes so I thought it was worth mentioning after some samples arrived on my doorstep that Wattie’s have recently brought out new versions containing less sugar.
With added sweetness from the extracts of the stevia leaf (a natural plant-based sweetener), they are also 30% lower in salt than the regular versions. As a busy mum to a toddler with a baby on the way, I can appreciate that sometimes foods that are convenient like tinned spaghetti and baked beans can be the difference between there being utter chaos versus there being food on the table while having our sanity intact! I do like it when companies look to make healthier alternatives to their existing products.
Wattie’s Spaghetti 50% Less Added Sugar and Wattie’s Baked Beanz 50% Less Added Sugar are now available alongside their original counterparts in supermarkets across New Zealand.
Images / NZ Real Health