Friday, September 5, 2014

Valuing The Good Taste Of Nature

I think we are truly blessed as a society to be able to have the luxury of choice. It can be a double-edge sword, however, because of the overwhelming amount of choice that we are faced with every single day, especially when it comes to snack foods.

You can find just about any flavour out there, but sometimes you are sacrificing taste for something healthy. Or you’re just delving into a sea of sugar that will satisfy your immediate craving, but leave your waistline unhappy and your energy levels depleted.

I recently came across a snack bar by a Canadian company called Taste of Nature, whose facility is in Markham. Going to their website, I noticed the usual participation in the Non-GMO Project, gluten-free (this lifestyle choice can come with its own risks for those who are not celiac, as many gluten-free products contain loads of sugar in comparison to gluten ones; watch those labels), being vegan and kosher, as most organic companies are nowadays.

However, what really made me stop was the variety of choices that fit with the Glycemic Index. This is a number associated with a particular type of food that indicates the food’s effect on a person’s blood glucose.

Informing consumers about what number each product is on the GI scale was the most impressive. So kudos to Taste of Nature for creating a snack that is low in sodium, sugar, and high in the areas that we should be consuming more of like fibre, protein, omega 3’s, and other important vitamins and minerals.

The one problem I have, though, with a lot of so-called healthy foods is that they taste awful. They may be packed with a great deal of health benefits, but there has to be a balance for me. I think I found it with Taste of Nature.

As you can see, they have so many flavours. It’s hard to actually say which one is my favourite because they all have very distinct tastes, but I have quite a liking for the California Almond Valley. It has a nice blend of raisins, pumpkin, sunflower, and sesame seeds, agave syrup, and a hint of rosemary extract.

Photo by: Melissa Arditti

I don’t get a weird aftertaste which I have experienced with other bars. The texture is perfectly chewy so it’s not a struggle to bite into. And it’s portioned well so you’re not overindulging, but reaping the nutritional benefits, too.

Some bars are a little sweeter than others, like the Louisiana Pecan Parade, but I can honestly say that any of the bars are a great post-workout snack, super for kids’ lunches, or a good alternative from hitting the fast food joint or coffee shop for a donut.

Another plus is many of their green business practices which include recycling food waste to farms for use as animal feed and priding themselves on reducing their carbon footprint as much as possible.

I will also applaud them for excellent customer service since I initially contacted them regarding their Taste of Nature Snacks that Care promotion, which wasn't working online. For my inconvenience, they sent me out a care package as a “token of our thanks for being so patient with us as we worked to get the contest fixed.”

Photo by: Melissa Arditti

Founded on the basic principle to, “work together as a family to create a food company that makes a simple, great tasting product that would give back to the world more than it took,” Taste of Nature has surely succeeded.

For more information, you can visit their website: Taste of Nature

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