I’m like a kid in a candy store whenever we stroll through our local health food store. With every trip, it seems like there’s a new brand or new packaging that catches my eye—Lifeway Probugs Organic Whole Milk Kefir is just one example.
As the organics and natural foods market continues to surge with so many parents filling their grocery carts with healthier foods these days, products that have been around for a long time are becoming more mainstream—and for good reason.
U.S. sales of organic food and non-food products reached $24.6 billion in 2008, growing 17.1 percent over 2007 sales, despite tough economic times, according to a new study by the Organic Trade Association (OTA).
I think our family certainly contributed to that statistic, especially now that we put much more thought into what and how we eat, now that we have a kid. Even though I’d never heard of it until the kid came along, kefir is a product that’s become a staple in our home—Lifeway Probugs Organic Whole Milk Kefir to be more specific. The best description I could find was from an LA Times article that describes kefir as a tangy fermented milk drink and a cousin to yogurt. It’s the healthy drink that has been credited with the longevity of people in the Caucasus. And, it seems like I’m not the only one who’s noticing kefir these days. Kefir may have originated centuries ago, but it’s now making its way to mainstream grocery stores.
So, what is it with kefir?
Considered a superfood by Dr. Perricone, one of Oprah’s doctor friends, kefir and other fermented and cultured foods is said to be “functional” foods—or in this case, 10 live and active cultures. As in, probiotics.
You’ve heard the buzz about probiotics, I’ve even blogged a little about it in the past; but in case you haven’t heard, probiotics are good bugs—good bacteria that help boost your immune system, among other health benefits. But as a mom, especially with the unavoidable worries about the Swine Flu, finding a food that boosts immunity is certainly something I am always willing to add to my grocery list.
I’ll be completely honest, you can’t miss the vibrant Probugs packaging. Resembling a modern looking juice pouch of sorts, Probugs has this awesome spout feature that helps contain leaks. The front of the package boasts their bug character, Polly the Probug, that I’m sure most kids can appreciate. So, on first impression, you have this cool package that’s clearly targeted to kids.
Some people buy portable yogurt, we buy Probugs. The kid sees it in the store and squeals, just like he does when he sees Elmo. We introduced Probugs when many people introduced baby yogurt, and since then, it’s been considered a treat, when really, it’s a healthy alternative to other snacks. Once we restock the Probugs stash, it never lasts. The kid finishes it, almost in one slurp–he loves it that much. The fact that the kid loves Probugs is huge, but I consider it a treat because it’s healthy, organic, helps boost immunity and aids with digestion. Lifeway Probugs Organic Whole Milk Kefir is yet again, another one of those products that I continually rave about.
As much as we love this product and how cool the nozzle is, I have to say that the individual packaging was a concern because as much as possible, I try to minimize our waste. I try to limit our juicebox purchases and other individual packaged products and opt for bulk containers. But after reading on the back of the package about Lifeway’s social responsibility, my concerns were offset after learning that the company uses renewable energy—a truly green tactic that I think more companies should follow.
Lifeway Probugs Organic Whole Milk Kefir comes in kid-friendly flavors—Orange Creamy Crawler, Sublime Slime Lime, Goo Berry Pie—and can be found in many health food stores and grocery stores including Whole Foods. In addition to Probugs, Lifeway has a lineup of kefir, yogurt, pudding and cheese that’s ideal for everyone in the family.
And speaking of Whole Foods, if you’re in the Chicago area be sure to check out the Whole Foods Lincoln Park Kids Weekend on June 6th and 7th. In addition to all the kiddie activities, Polly the Probug will be hanging out.
Oh, the awesomeness doesn’t end there. Lifeway is graciously giving one Next Kid Thing reader a fabulous giveaway—a variety bundle of Probugs Organic Whole Milk Kefir—one 4-pack of each flavor (that’s three, 4-packs in total!)
To win it:
Visit Lifeway and tell me what product(s) you would like to try and why.
For additional entries:
1. Tweet about this giveaway
2. Share this product review on any social netoworking site
3. Sign up to receive my updates via email. (If you already receive it, just let me know!)
Please add a comment for each of your entries. The giveaway ends on June 3 at 11:59 p.m.
Happy Wellness Wednesday and good luck!
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