Are you surprised to see me? I don’t usually post on Thursdays, but I’m experimenting with something to see what you think. Let me back up … I’ve been reading blogs for several years now, and one thing that often baffles me is the polarizing nature of product reviews. Some people seem to be so offended that bloggers are getting products for free, and feel that the reviews dilute the content of the blog. Others seem super excited about (honest) product reviews and giveaways, and ask for more. I personally love reading (again, honest) product reviews so I can learn about what options are out there and what others think. I love doing product reviews because I really enjoy experimenting with new products … but I certainly don’t want to annoy those of you who don’t like them. (picture source)
So, I’ve been thinking … I’m going to try to add a new day to my blog schedule for the weeks when I have a product to review, and those of you who want to read it can keep following along, while the others can just ignore Thursday posts. Sound good? Of course, I’m always eager to hear your feedback – so let me know in the comments below or by sending me an email.
ENERGYbits Review + Giveaway!
OK, if you’re still with me, I’d like to tell you my history with ENERGYbits. I first heard of the amazing nutritional powers of spirulina from our guest lecturer David Wolfe, while I was studying at IIN. I tried adding spirulina powder to my smoothies, but it tastes and smells quite … strong and I just couldn’t bear to ruin the taste of my delicious smoothies.
Fast forward a few months, and reviews for ENERGYbits started popping up all over blogland. What really sold me is that Ben Greenfield mentioned the benefits several times on his podcast (which I love). I still didn’t try them, though, until I won a giveaway! I was excited to try the Bits, but I wanted to make them last … so I took 1 or 2 at a time. When the company followed up with me to see if I had enjoyed the sample and wanted to do a giveaway on my own blog, I turned down the opportunity because (honestly) I didn’t feel any difference from the Bits. Jonathan, the Brand Manager at ENERGYbits (who I’ll mention shortly), was kind enough to explain that the serving size was 30 Bits, and offer me a second tin to sample – the “right” way this time. So today you’ll hear the results of my second attempt at ENERGYbits! (As always, although ENERGYbits sent me two samples to try and review for free, they are not sponsoring me in any way and all opinions are my own!)
- ENERGYbits contain 100% organically-grown spirulina algae
- Spirulina is the substance with the highest naturally-occuring protein content in the world (64% protein, or 5g per 30-calorie serving)
- ENERGYbits have no chemicals or additives (so important when it comes to supplements!), no sugar, no caffeine, and are vegan, non-GMO, raw, and organic
- EnergyBits contain 40 vitamins and minerals, that increase your mental and physical energy, and can improve endurance
- A serving of ENERGYbits meets most of your daily nutritional requirements (this is from the ENERGYbits flyer – I’m not sure how they define or calculate this), and provides your brain and body with a steady supply of nourishment
- NASA gives algae to its astronauts, saying “1 kg of algae has the nutritional equivalent of 1,000 kg of fruits and vegetables”
- You know I love protein, antioxidants from vegetable sources, and anything that provides energy, so the nutrition stats are right up my alley.
- I first swallowed the Bits during a long day at the office, and expected to feel an energy jolt as if I had had a cup of coffee. I didn’t feel anything. However, Jonathan reminded me that I was supposed to feel a slow stream of sustained energy and fatigue reduction, so I tried again. The several other times I have tried, I do feel a bit less fatigued (I think). It’s NOT a noticeable burst of energy, but that’s not what it’s supposed to be.
- I’ve also taken the Bits right before a run, and the effect I feel is slightly more noticeable there. Again, it’s sustained energy, so it’s not a big burst, but I do think that if I take 15 or so Bits before a run, I tend to feel stronger throughout the run.
- Even though the impact I felt was less than I expected, I still wholeheartedly believe in the nutritional benefits of spirulina, and I also believe that the quality of spirulina from ENERGYbits is top-notch – they explained to me via Instagram that they did several years of research before taking the product to market, and use extreme quality control measures.
- I have a very sensitive stomach, so the thought of taking 20-30 Bits scared me. (The company is strongly convicted that these are not “pills” but little bits of food). However, I have never felt any discomfort from taking these, even when running!
- When you first open the tin, the smell is a bit … fishy. Honestly, it didn’t bother me at all. I just swallowed the Bits and closed the tin back up, but I’ve read several reviews where the person was so turned off that they couldn’t swallow the Bit. Not sure what that says about me!
- Some of the literature suggests that the Bits will “fill you up like a meal.” I’m a generally hungry person, but I can promise you that I won’t be skipping any meals for Bits! They might have taken the edge off of my snacking urge, but they did not fill me up.
- The biggest downfall for me are that the Bits are not cheap. They run about $3.25 per serving (30 Bits). However, the company points out that if you’re comparing this to an energy drink, energy shot, or other supplement, it’s in line with (or cheaper than) other options. And cheaper spirulina options can come with scary additives that it’s best to avoid.
- The ENERGYbits website has a TON more information and is really well done, so check it out if you want more details!
So, are you ready to try ENERGYbits yourself? The easiest way to do so is to enter my giveaway using the Rafflecopter plug-in below (US residents only, sorry! Open until 11:59pm CT on 12/8/13). If you don’t win, though, ENERGYbits are only available at ENERGYbits.com, and Jonathan has shared with me that he’d be happy to connect anyone with a current ambassador to share a discount on a bag of bits – you can email him at firstname.lastname@example.org. I do have to say that Jonathan has been SO patient with me – I questioned the product so many times, and he was kind and understanding with his explanation every time. He also put up with incredibly long email response times from me!
So tell me in the comments … have you every tried spirulina? Have you ever tried ENERGYbits? What gives you energy? Any thoughts on hosting reviews/ giveaways on a separate day?