SOC13: Bars & Sports Drinks from NOW, Hammer, Cytosport, CarboRocket, SOS, Larabar, & NuttZo

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With so much to see, my lunch breaks often consist of frequent stops at the nutrition booths, which doubles as a nice way to see what’s new for cyclists. This year’s Sea Otter has the usual smorgasbord of drinks and bars to keep me running around all day.

A perennial favorite is Cytosport’s Muscle Milk because, well, I can only handle so much sports drink and carby bars. This year, the new Light Peach flavor was a perfect compliment to the sunny days. They also have new Protein Crunch bars in Chocolate Peanut Butter and Vanilla Almond Yogurt. There were the sample sizes, the real bars are much larger.

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Larabar’s delicious bars usually consist of a lot of dates, with a few nuts mixed in depending on flavor. The new Über bars reverse that with a mostly nuts concoction. Both the Bananas Foster and Roasted Nut Roll were delicious. Apple Turnover and Cherry Cobbler are also available.

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They also have a new protein bar, their first, that wasn’t being sampled. It’s called ALT, comes in four flavors and uses pea protein rather than whey or soy for a vegan recovery option…much like the new stuff from Hammer Nutrition:

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Hammer’s new Vegan Recovery Bar uses tapioca, peanut-or-almond butter, pea protein and rice protein (all organic except the peas) to deliver 14-15g of protein per bar. The Chocolate Peanut one is coated, the Almond Cacao has cacao nibs in it.

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NOW, which stands for No Opportunity Wasted, is a line of gluten free bars from Phil Keoghan. They’re delicious, and they’re gluten free and use Manuka Honey. They have new Newtons with honey and strawberry fillings, and the A3 (Anytime. Anywhere. Anyplace) Action Snax are crispy (rice and soy crisps, among other things) treats that come in S’mores, Marshmallow and PB&J flavors. These are sample sizes, full size bars are larger. The Road Rash ointment also uses the Manuka Honey, which has natural antiseptic properties. It’s 100% natural and comes in a 1oz tube at retail. Haven’t tried this last one yet.

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CarboRocket isn’t a brand new company, but this was the first time I’d seen it. They have two drinks, a mild hydration-specific formula with 110 calories and four electrolytes, plus vitamin C and 1,000mg L-Glutamine. The Half Evil Endurance Fuel ups it to 333 calories (get it, half of 666) adds a 4,500mg blend of BCAA’s and L-Glutamine, and two of the three flavors have 50mg caffeine per serving. Mix it full strength and you’re getting 84g of carbs (26g sugars). It’s designed to get you through all day races without having to eat solid foods.

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Click the image to enlarge ingredients, Half Evil on the right.

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SOS Rehydrate wasn’t at the show, but we just got these in and figured it was convenient to throw ‘em on the dog pile. They’re sold in 5-packs, each packet good for 16oz of oral rehydration. It’s a mildly hypotonic solution designed to treat mild to moderate dehydration with a high concentration of sodium, potassium and magnesium. Could be a good thing to throw in your pack just in case. I just mixed one up and the light lemon-lime flavor ain’t too shabby.

NuttZo

Sent to us prior to Sea Otter, NuttZo is an Organic alternative to the same old peanut butter. Even better, for those who don’t do peanuts there is a peanut free version (although the fine print says manufactured in a facility that also processes peanuts).  You won’t find anything on the ingredient list other than nuts, seeds, sea salt, and chocolate for one of the flavors. Nutrition for each serving is very close to peanut butter, but with less sugar, less sodium, and more dietary fiber. NuttZo is offered in three flavors – Original, No Peanut, and Chocolate. Personally, I’d go with the Chocolate at the Original and No Peanut are a little bland on their own but with a dab of jam or Nutella they are amazing.

As a cyclist trying to eat better, NuttZo has been great to have around the house to spread on toast or a banana. NuttZo also offers a bunch of recipes that utilize the spreadable goodness for things like breakfast quinoa with NuttZo and berries – which was good enough to keep me from being sad there was no bacon (blasphemy, I know). Vegan, Kosher, Gluten Free, Organic, 50-70% of your Omega 3 ALAs, this stuff checks all the Whole Foods boxes, which is probably why you can find it at Whole Foods or from NuttZo direct.

At $12.99 for Original and Chocolate, and $19.99 for No Peanut, it certainly isn’t cheap but with the price of organic food rising, especially nuts, it’s not surprising. Fortunately, a little bit goes a long way and NuttZo donates 1% of the gross revenues to Project Left Behind.

 

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