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Sparkling Ice: Product Review


The topic of beverages is a hot one. Even when we are talking about cold ones (ha ha).

You must live under a rock if you are unaware of the health risks of drinking sweetened beverages. Pop, and even juice are linked with obesity and Type II diabetes.

Even diet drinks, however, are now on the hit list for many health conscious consumers. Some experts have raised concerns that artificial sweeteners may actually increase blood sugar, and promote overeating or weight gain, though the evidence is still weak. Just last week the media blew up over results of a new study from the University of Manitoba with headlines claiming that artificial sweeteners may "...cause weight gain and increase risk of heart disease." Here is the reality. It is a meta-analysis, which means it used past studies as units of measurement. Few of the studies done on this topic, and used in the analysis, are randomized, controlled studies, and even the researchers who conducted the review admit that the results do not prove a causal association.

There is no doubt that the healthiest option is to simply drink water. Period. Dress it up with lemon and cucumber slices if you must. Perhaps have the occasional unsweetened tea or coffee, if necessary. But that's it, end of story.

Unfortunately, most people don't want to be so limited in terms of what they can drink. People like bubbles, and people really like flavour. Sweet flavour.

I am one of those people. I also don't sweat having artificial sweeteners here and there. I have yet to find solid research showing harm so the occasional diet soft drink, etc., is something I have without too much concern.

I would personally rather have a diet drink than consume 150 empty calories of sugar water. If it came down to that or plain water, I'd just choose water, because, frankly, I don't think any sweetened drinks are worth their calories (if I am going to drink my calories, I'll take it in the form of alcohol, thank you very much!).

I hate cola and most pop, diet or otherwise, so if I do want to purchase flavoured bubbles, I will reach for something like Sparkling Ice. I'd only tried their grapefruit flavour, so I was thrilled when they sent us a package of their other flavours to try.

The also offer:

  • Black Raspberry
  • Orange Mango
  • Kiwi Strawberry
  • Coconut Pineapple
  • Lemon Lime
  • Cherry Limeade
They are sweetened with sucralose, so for you folks convinced it is poison (no evidence this is true), than these drinks are not for you. Ingredients wise, my only complaint is the artificial colours. To me, they are so damn unnecessary. Do we really all have to behave like children and only consume things that look like unicorns? If they were all clear and colourless, I would be fine with that.

The girls, of course, wanted them all, but I allowed them each to choose just one to try. Little A chose Kiwi Strawberry, and Big A Lemon Lime, and since these were the two that appealed to me least, I was happy to oblige.

I liked Cherry Limeade best, but all were good. Little A loved Kiwi Strawberry and said the flavour kind of overwhelmed the bubbliness (which is a positive for her as she doesn't like strong carbonation). Big A loved the Lemon Lime and asked, "Why would anyone drink the sugary stuff? This tastes better."

Do I recommend this product? For an alternative to a sugary soda, for an occasional treat? Sure. But again, plain water should be your go-to beverage the vast majority of the time.

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