Reviews Galore? SoBe It.

by Jenn (eating bender) on July 2, 2009

Hello there!

Thank you for the feedback on my first official book review. I’m glad that many of you enjoyed it and want to see more! I love reading, so I am more than happy to oblige :)

It’s hard to believe that it’s Thursday already! My trip to Maui is drawing ever closer, and I could not be more excited. But I still feel so behind! Easy button? I could use a “Catch Up” Button right about now.

The good news is that, while I’m jumping from project to project, I have also been enjoying some delicious food! Do you remember when I reviewed Vega Smoothie Infusion? Probably not 😉 Well, not to worry, because Kelly from Sequel Naturals hooked me up with a box of smoothie packets.


The Smoothie Infusion is made from natural plant-based whole foods that are alkaline-forming and easy to digest. It includes protein, fiber, omega 3 EFAs and green foods. You can read more about all of the health benefits here. I’ve been combining the packet with 1 cup almond milk, 1/2 cup water and handfuls of frozen blueberries, raspberries and strawberries for breakfast every morning.


[Shout out to U of A beauties Gina and Jess for their school pride…in a glass!]

Now for someone with a sweet tooth as sweet as mine to like a “green” smoothie is really saying something. Granted, it doesn’t really look green at all thanks to all the sweet fruits I add to the mix 😉 But what I’m trying to get across is that even if green smoothies seem scary, you can dress them up enough to make them taste like something straight out of Jamba Juice. Trust me 😯


My family and I have also been playing a few rounds of golf here and there. It gets pretty hot pretty quickly in Arizona this time of year, so we head out for our 7:33 tee time and get done before high noon :) So before I left for the course, I snacked on a piece of Nature’s Pride 100% Whole Wheat Bread topped with 1 tbsp. peanut butter.


I received three free loaves of bread from Nature’s Pride after tweeting with them a few days ago. Have I mentioned how much I love Twitter? Their wheat bread certainly did not disappoint. It was hearty, voluminous and grainy – three qualities that are essential in a good piece of wheat bread. Thanks, Nature’s Pride! I’m looking forward to trying the other loaves, too.


But walking 18 holes of golf really does work up a sweat, so we are always ready for a Papa Bender lunch by the time we get home. Yesterday, he decided to make egg burritos, which as you may or may not know, are one of my staples when I’m cooking for myself! So how did his compare?


Let’s just say they were a lot more colorful than my egg + spinach combo! We also had green onions, tomatoes, diced chicken, cheese and salsa. Papa Bender used My Nana’s brand tortillas, which I am going to go out on a limb and officially call the best flour tortillas I’ve ever had.


After lunch lately, my mom and I have been heading out to do some errands, some of which may or may not include a little research on wedding venues :) I can’t wait until we secure the location – I’m getting antsy just thinking about it. While we were researching, I sipped on another new product that was sent to me by Amy, who represents SoBe Lifewater.


The new zero calorie line from SoBe is sweetened by PureVia, made from the stevia plant. This was the “Black & Blue Berry” flavor. I had everyone in my family take a sip, and here’s what they had to say:

Papa Bender: It’s alright. It kind of tastes like Kool-Aid. But it’s got a good taste overall, though I wouldn’t pay more for it than I would for water.

Mama Bender: It was really good. It’s hard to believe it doesn’t have any calories or bad sweeteners, but I’ll take it. I’ve had the other SoBe Lifewaters before and liked them, but the natural sweetener option is great.

Me Bender: I usually love berry flavored drinks above all others, and this one was no different. I could really taste the blueberry! It tasted like a sweeter version of Propel, and makes for a great drink option when you’re in the mood for something a little more flavorful than water, but don’t want all the liquid calories.

I’m looking forward to trying the other flavors. I’m excited that more and more drinks are now being sweetened with stevia, too. What’s your opinion of the new stevia-based options?

And just because it wouldn’t be a trip home without it, Papa Bender made his infamous steak + potatoes dinner for us last night. The steak was marinated and grilled, while the potatoes were wrapped in aluminum foil and put in the oven at 350* for about an hour, or until they are fork tender. We also had steamed zucchini + onions topped with a sprinkle of Parmesan cheese.


And you can’t go wrong with a little vin rouge when eating steak. Gotta get those antioxidants 😉


Alright, I am off to the gym for the first time in a couple of days! I’ve been doing the P90X DVDs with my brother this week because he was interested in seeing what they are all about. So far, he loves them!

Your friend in the desert,


{ 31 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Jennifer @ His N' Her Health July 2, 2009 at 3:30 pm

Hello! I have been reading your blog for some time now and have never commented. I go to the UA and have lived here in Tucson for about 10 years now!
Regarding the stevia, I have mixed feelings. It is definitely better than artificial sweeteners but at the same time they are making cola with it, which has no nutritional value and people will guzzle it because it is “healthy” with stevia. I am undecided :)


2 Foodie (Fab and Delicious Food) July 2, 2009 at 3:36 pm

Thanks for all the product reviews! They all sound so good!

The egg burritos and steak and potatoes look yummy!

That’s so exciting that you’re looking at wedding venues! Good luck with everything!


3 janetha July 2, 2009 at 3:41 pm

maui! so jealous. youre going to have a blast! those tortillas look paper thin (which is good, i hate too-thick of tortillas) and i love the filling in the burrito. he did good! have a great weekend :)


4 Marianne July 2, 2009 at 3:48 pm

Hmmm, perhaps I will try a variation of your recipe the next time I use a package of Smoothie Infusion. I wasn’t a huge fan the first time I tried it, I thought it tasted like grass too much, but I used the recipe on the back of the package.

As for stevia – I actually don’t like the taste of it, so I don’t buy it. I haven’t really seen many products using it as a sweetener in Canada.


5 ksgoodeats July 2, 2009 at 3:51 pm

Thanks for all the reviews, sugar plum! I welcome Stevia based drinks with open arms! Splenda and all the other sweeteners out there give me may-jah headaches :(

That new bread sounds bueno!! WOOHOO for wedding venues! I can’t wait to hear more about the plans!


6 Hangry Pants July 2, 2009 at 4:33 pm

As I type I am sipping on SoBe lifewaters w/ the stevia – some kind of pomegrantate flavor. my opinion is that it, like vitamin water 10, are wayyyyyyy too strong. I dump half in another container and mix with water and it’s much better.


7 Shelby July 2, 2009 at 4:46 pm

Those tortillas look so good! I want some!


8 Erica July 2, 2009 at 5:10 pm

Hey chica! You must be SO excited for your trip!! Hooray!! Love all these product reviews. I have def been tooooo scared to try the green smoothies! Yours looks very pretty/delicious though!

I can’t remember where I just heard it, but I heard that doctors have determined that Stevia is JUST as bad for you as splenda. They’re saying it doesn’t matter that its plant based, when you break something down into just a chemical compound, it alters it…or something like that….? Any who- fit sugar wrote a little about it-


9 MarathonVal July 2, 2009 at 5:16 pm

I didn’t know SoBe used Stevia – I just assume those products use sugar or Splenda, and stay away from them, but I like Stevia so thats good to know!


10 gina (fitnessista) July 2, 2009 at 5:26 pm

u of a! u of a! u of a! u of aaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa!! you know i love that cup! thank you for the lovely shout out, and for supporting my alma mater 😉
great reviews! i have some of the smoothie infusion, courtesy of kelly as well, but still need to try it!
hope you’re having a blasty in az! i can’t wait to visit my native land soon 😀
have a great night my friend <3


11 Rebeca July 2, 2009 at 6:31 pm

How cute! Maybe if I move back home my bro and I can split the major $ for px90 and that’ll get him to exercise! One can dream!

That smoothie looks fab but not as fab as those egg burritos, yum!

Ahhh wedding venues! So exciting!


12 brandi July 2, 2009 at 6:37 pm

that’s awesome that you’re doing P90 with your brother! how fun :)

sounds like you’re having an awesome time and trying some good stuff! I don’t think I’ve seen that brand of bread around here, but it looks yum :)


13 Maria July 2, 2009 at 7:37 pm

I wasn’t a fan of Vega’s other product, so I must check that one out. Thanks for the review!

That burrito is really colorful and looks sooo good–the tortilla sounds fabulous! Papa bender is such a great cook :).

I am liking the stevia addition to everything. It is a great calorie-free sweetener that has no affect on the blood sugar level, and it is all natural and actually good for you!


14 Whit July 2, 2009 at 10:20 pm

I LOVE the SoBE Lifewater! I picked one up on the way back from the beach the other weekend. SO BOSSY!


15 broccolihut July 2, 2009 at 10:22 pm

Love the cute title–such a clever Bender:)
I like those Smoothie Infusions too; they’re actually the only Vega product I enjoy. As a smoothie enthusiast, I have to agree with you on homemade smoothies–who needs Jamba?!


16 Sarah July 2, 2009 at 11:14 pm

So maybe I need to “tweet?” Mine would all be, “I ate a salad.” “I just checked Eating Bender to see if Jenn posted.” “Gracie just wet her pants.” In other words, just like my blog 😉


17 Jessica (jesslikesithot) July 2, 2009 at 11:37 pm

Ahhh, thanks for the shout out Jenn!! That U of A cup is adorable, I’ll need to buy myself one of those once I’m back in Arizona…. then I can use it for some delicious smoothing drinking! :)

Loved your review roundup, and papa and mama bender’s was also a cute addition! I’m gonna be on the lookout for that Sobe water, it sounds great!


18 Shannon (The Daily Balance) July 3, 2009 at 8:15 am

Nice product reviews! I am personally quite happy to see the stevia products on the market — certainly better than aspartame, no one can argue that!

Despite me being quite tall, I can fit into a pretty tight ball — you sure you don’t want to pack me in your Maui suitcase


19 Shannon (The Daily Balance) July 3, 2009 at 8:15 am

Nice product reviews! I am personally quite happy to see the stevia products on the market — certainly better than aspartame, no one can argue that!

Despite me being quite tall, I can fit into a pretty tight ball — you sure you don’t want to pack me in your Maui suitcase?


20 Diana (Soap & Chocolate) July 3, 2009 at 9:31 am

OMG the tortillas look so delicate! So they really taste as good as they look? Somethign to be said for a really good plain flour tortilla, especially after getting used to eating cardboardImeanwholegrain all the time. :)


21 Jenny July 3, 2009 at 9:43 am

i think i’ve officially drank one of those sobe lifewaters everyday for the past 2 weeks.. i can’t get enough – they’re so off the hook! sorry papa bender wasn’t impressed :(


22 Lara (Thinspired) July 3, 2009 at 10:04 am

Sounds like you really enjoying yourself, Jenn! ALl the food looks great, especially the egg burritos…how is it that green onions make everything taste better?!


23 glidingcalm July 3, 2009 at 12:56 pm

Baby girl!! I loveeeeeee you so!! And I need your addy too!! I am so excited for you to go to Hawaii! you will have to take lots of pictures of your tropical eats and gorgeous viewS!!!

thanks for the Sobe review (I like those too!! but wish they were sparkling) and for the smoothie packet info! If it were warmer here, I’d be having smoothies more often!!!

ahh what I would do for a Papa B steak!!!

take care my beautiful friend in the white ( i mean pale pink) strapless dress!!!!!!!!!


24 Danielle July 3, 2009 at 2:43 pm

Hm, I think stevia additions are better than other sugar alternatives but I try to avoid those drinks all together. I can make something so much more delicious myself anyway ;). Hope you had a fantastic workout at the gym!


25 Barbara July 3, 2009 at 5:19 pm

LOVE stevia. I buy the liquid flavored ones for my protein shakes, coffee, oatmeal..everything. FANTASTIC and no tummy trauma like with Splenda/SweetNLow. The Zevia sodas taste good but I agree that no soda really has any real nutritional value.

I tried Vit 10 water but not SoBE YET. After reading this….I’m getting one tomorrow:)




26 Beth @ CrossBorderCravings July 3, 2009 at 6:58 pm

That tortilla looks so good!! I think I will need to try that brand out soon…


27 Mara @ What's For Dinner? July 4, 2009 at 6:32 am

I’m loving all the Stevia products, especially that one brand of soda! I tweeted Natures Pride too, but to no avail. Guess I’m not worthy of bread! Hurry up and come home so we can hang out! I miss you!


28 Nate July 4, 2009 at 7:20 am

Go Wildcats! What courses have the Benders been playing on out in AZ?


29 Erin July 4, 2009 at 2:38 pm

Don’t parents make good golfing buddies? Haha next time you’re in FL, we definitely need to tee off together! 😀


30 Kristie July 4, 2009 at 4:38 pm

How does Papa Bender even manage to make EGG WRAPS fancy?! He’s pure pro I tell ya.

I don’t think I’ve tried Stevia in any way or in anything yet! I have no idea why. There doesn’t seem to be an abundance of Stevia-laden products around here. That or I’m just missing them. Either way, I think I need to try it sometime soon!

Maui Maui Maui! SO jealous.

Hope your 4th of July is mucho exciting Jenn! :)


31 Sarah (from See Sarah Eat) July 9, 2009 at 7:08 am

I like the SoBe lifewaters too, I had been drinking the calorie-filled ones until I found the 0. I only have one every once in a while when I’m tired of water or I have an intense workout, but they are pretty good! The fuji apple pear is my fave 😉


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