Yikes. That title sort of rhymed, and it was in some sort of meter. Not intentional, I swear.
A few months ago, the nice folks at Solixir asked me if I’d like to do a review of their all-natural, sparkling botanical beverages. I almost didn’t say yes. This wasn’t because I had any bias against the product, or because I wasn’t pleased with the offer, but simply because I never really drink carbonated beverages. In fact, I’ve never regularly drank any beverage that isn’t water, tea, coffee, or green juice. My friends like to joke that there’s “never anything to drink” at my apartment, and they’re not off the mark: there’s not a bottled beverage to be seen in my fridge, unless I’ve been too busy to make almond milk, and I’ve bought some instead.
I didn’t grow up drinking soda, and even in college, I never developed a taste for it. But when I started counseling, I was absolutely astounded by the number of self-proclaimed a) soda addicts, and b) diet soda addicts who came to me for help. Diet coke addiction seems to be especially rampant, and I think it’s a problem for lots of reasons. The main ones are:
I work hard to help my clients get over their soda fix: this can involve anything from pep talks to gentle encouragement to suggestions of hynotherapy, but the main thing I do is to help them find soda alternatives. And this is why I ultimately got so excited about trying Solixir: it was my hope that I could offer it as a soda alternative to the hooked. It’s still carbonated, sure, but the natural sweetener used (juice concentrates) is about 1000x better for you than aspartame. This means that it’s a lovely drink to enjoy when you’re not hydrating with good ole H20, and it’s a perfect drink to help soda addicts kick the habit.
Solixir sent me three flavors: orange mate, blackberry chamomile, and pomegranate ginger. (The flavors are infused with tea and fruit flavors, as you can see.)
I tried all of them, one by one. My favorite by far was pomegranate ginger: I’m not usually a fan of pomegranate flavoring, but I do love me some ginger, and this was gingery enough to win me over. Second fave was Blackberry, and trailing behind it was orange mate (I don’t really care for the taste of mate unless I tamper with it quite a bit).
OK, honestly? I probably wouldn’t just go out and buy any of these drinks. Not because they’re not great for what they are—the flavors are solid, and while they do have some natural sugars, I found the nutrition panels pretty solid—but rather because they’re just not my thing. For that reason, I gave a bunch to M, to see what he thought. At first, he wondered if there’s a market for healthy drinks that are nevertheless on the sweeter side, but we both agreed that there is: Naked juices, Vitamin Water spinoffs, and even coconut water prove it. If that was the case, he said, he thought they were “delicious.” And he enjoyed them for the remainder of the weekend.
M has a healthy, yet open-minded palate—I’d say he’s a good barometer of how your average healthy eater and drinker might react to a product—so I suspect most people would think these are delicious, too. If you’re looking for a new special drink to enjoy with meals, or you’re battling an addiction to sodas, I highly recommend them! You can find Solixir beverages at Whole Foods or other healthy markets, and they’re also at Amazon.
Before I go, I’m curious: do any of my readers have an Annie Chun Salladacco spiralizer—or one like it?
This is the small, cheap model of spiralizer that I used to know. It made my zucchini pasta very thin, like angel hair:
Then I got rid of it and invested in a Paderno Spirooli, which is a bit fancier, and is strong enough to also spiralize carrots and sweet potatoes and celery root and turnips:
I know that it’s a better spiralizer in many ways, and I’m supposed to prefer it to my old salladacco, but the thing is, I’m not sure I like how thick it makes my raw noodles—even on the thinner setting:
So here’s what I’m wondering: does anyone want to trade spiralizers? If you’re reading and you happen to have my old model of spiralizer, I can send you my spirooli, and you can send me your salladacco, and we’ll both be happy. Just let me know by leaving a comment!
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Hey, I have a handful of questions. One, is there a cola flavor? two, what’s the top 3 best drinks in your opinion? Three, on a scale of 1 to 10, how sweet are these? I’ve had a lot of substitute sodas, and I haven’t found any that are good yet.
I was told water kefir is supposed to help relieve cravings for soda but I don’t find it gets fizzy enough to even compare… but these might do the trick.. thankfully I’ve weaned myself off soda awhile ago… the headaches were terrible!
anyway.. great post.. thanks for the review 🙂
I am totally a soda junkie, but I have been trying to stop, especially because I don’t eat sugar, and I KNOW that diet is so unhealthy and unnatural! If I decide that I can’t give up soda for good, I’ll definitely give these a try, but I’m going to try to keep soda out of diet in general… but I always have my “weak” days!
Thanks for the review.
I used to be a soda junkie–diet coke, to be exact–and although I’ve kicked that habit, every now and then I crave something carbonated. I would love to give these a try sometime. Wonder if they’ll ever make it to Montana?
Thanks for the post Gena. I never developed a taste for soda, either, but I recently started a career in health counseling and I am amazed at how many people are self-proclaimed soda addicts. Anything that has control of my eating habits, I want out of my diet (which explains my recent dark chocolate reduction). Also good to know about the spiralizers. I have the Annie Chun, but thought the grass was always greener on the other Paderno side with the thick noodles. Love that you are doing a trade 🙂
As a side note, I just wanted to say your blog is such an inspiration to me. I have been a devoted reader for a year and a half now and am so grateful for your insight. Especially now that I am over seas-recently moved to Milan and now London-because CR gives me a little slice of the warm, welcoming health food community that I love so dearly. You have inspired me to start my own blog, Peacocks & Moonshine. Thanks again and hope you have a wonderful weekend!
You are so, so, so kind, Kate! I cannot believe I inspired you so much.
I recently went raw, and in part it started to get away from processed food. And that started because I was aware of how much Splenda I was using. I liked drinking something other than just water so when the Splenda was cleared out of the house my health food store pointed me towards TeaZen. http://www.twinlab.com/brands/teazen This isn’t carbonated, but is quite tasty. You don’t need to use nearly as much as they recommend, so the little bottle lasts a long time. They suggest a full dropper per 6-8oz, but I use a full dropper for a litre of water.
I have both spiralizers and love them for different reasons!
I have battled diet soda addiction before and it is really yukky! Diet Pepsi Max.. when I worked crazy hours at the wine bar, I would go through phases where I would drink 2 at a time… it almost felt like it got me drunk! I am really sensitive to chemicals.
I will trade you. i have the exact Joyce Chen model and if my husband has not sneakily thrown it out its yours. email me and we can work out the details.
Gena-you may want your clients who are addicted to soda to watch the following video on you tube:
It is 90 minutes long, but if they are serious about kicking the addiction, this video is a great learning tool about exactly why soda is so addictive and so poisonious.
The video has me really rethinking sugar altogether. I have known for a long time that it doesn’t do me any good and I have certainly succeeded in eating less and less of it over the years, but this video is just the thing I needed to get whatever reamains of it out of my life. Unless the sugar is packaged by nature with all of its fiber (fruit)!
Hey Wendy! Thanks for this. You know, while I think it’s all true, it’s not the kind of thing I show clients (I flipped through video highlights to get a sense of it). I find these kinds of videos to be a little fear mongering. Most of my clients have major guilt and self-loathing when it comes to their food habits as it is: I really don’t want to freak them out any more than they are already 🙂
I also don’t want to show them anything that makes them think they need to quit a food cold turkey, OR ELSE: I’m much more interested in teaching them how to be moderate, because time and time again I see how making hard and fast rules about what to avoid and what not to avoid backfires. So, I try to get them off soda and excess sugar very slowly. But I also need them to know that a little agave or dates or a chocolate chip cookie now and then is OK, and part of a normal life. Because they can abstain for a while, but chances are they won’t and can’t abstain forever, and when they do start flirting with sugar again, I want to help them have the tools to enjoy it moderately and “normally” (if normal exists–but you know what I mean!) 🙂
Anyway, it’s a solid video though–and thanks for sharing!
gena, your timing is impeccable with this post. i LOVE diet coke, full confession. have struggled for years with giving it up, drinking it, beiing unhappy drinking it, knowing there are no redeeming factors to it whatsoever…am now “clean” for the month of march (!) – so i welcome your blog entry for it’s positive reinforcement message!
i have tried zevia and it’s awesome – tastes just like *real* pop…will have to look for this brand (not sure if it’s in canada?).
thanks so much for the timely post!
My mom hated coffee, so we used to drink Dr. Pepper for “morning coffee break”. It really is no surprise I have horrid teeth…
I don’t know if I’ll ever give up soda. When I’m on top of things, I drink sparkling water with lime in it – the bubbles give me my fix with no extra junk.
You are so lucky never to have developed a soda habit. I’m long over mine, bot only because I consumed my life’s quotient of diet pop before I turned 25. I’m convinced that aspartame is why I developed severe myopia in my 20s despite having had 20-20 vision all through highschool.
My friends say the same thing about my lack of drinks. Except I can always be counted on to have wine. 🙂 I did find the strawberry kombucha at Whole Paycheck a few days ago and sticked up on that!
I’ve been in the market for a spiralizer for a while now – appreciate the heads up!
I went through a brief period of being “addicted” to Pepsi Max in Year 11, but it was mostly because all of my friends drank it. Now, I get a craving for caffeine free coke about twice a year, and the rest of the time all I want is water, coffee, and herbal tea. Your comment about your friends saying you have nothing ot drink makes me laugh, because I sometimes feel embarrassed about having nothing “special” to offer my visitors!
I’ve never been a soda fan, either. We didn’t drink them growing up, and I never chose to drink them on my own, even in college. I think it’s great that there’s a product like this on the market to potentially help those who have a diet soda addiction (I know several addicts!). I’m a Kombucha fan these days, but that’s about the only thing I drink other than water…and the occasional glass of wine. 🙂
I’ve been trying to switch to Zevia cola as an alternative to Diet pop. This looks rather interesting to try!
The timing of your post is sooo ironic. I JUST got done pre-drafting a post on water that I was sent to review. Not what you got, and it’s zero calorie and flavored. My thoughts on it are the same as yours by and large…it’s nice, better than diet soda, but just not my thing either. I just like real water. Or coffee 🙂
The spiralizer you want to get rid of, i.e. the Paderno, it DOES make thicker noodles even on the thinnest setting. I dont actually own the saladacco but have seen plenty of pics of noodles that come from each machine, and based on my own Padnero experience, and picture comparing, you’re right on it producing thicker noodles. I would love a thinner/finer blade, too, for true “angel hair” pasta. But so far, I’m ok with the Paderno.
I hope you find a trade, Gena!
Thanks for the (possibly inadvertent) spiralizer review that is going on in the comment section. Great information!
You have to get a Benriner spirilizer. It makes them in different sizes, really thin to thicker. It’s the best. I just got mine.
I got mine on Amazon, it’s really cheap! http://www.amazon.com/Joyce-Chen-51-0662-Saladacco-Spiral/dp/B0000DDVYE
I love that you got a deal with your first comment! Gotta love the power of a blog. 🙂
I have the Annie Chun Salladacco spiralizer. I can trade if you would like.
Christine, I bought mine at Sur La Table in Denver. I don’t know if you have a location near you…but they should have it there.
There’s never anything to drink at my house either since I’m with you on water and coffee, it was a little awkward when friends were asking for diet soda at a raw party. These look great for my hubby who still likes an occasional soda.
I have a Paderno Spirooli too and it works well, but is a pain with carrots and not fun to clean. I wouldn’t mind trying an Annie Chun Salladacco spiralizer.
I was looking for a spiralizer but couldn’t find one, where do you get them? I bought a julienne peeler instead but I really wanted a spiralizer… I am new to the whole raw thing, if you can’t tell…
I should get these for my husband – he still has a bit of a soda addiction.
And Gena, I keep meaning to email you – but first it was “she’s busy with settling into school and I don’t want to disturb her” and then I got busy, and now I just feel pathetic for not having emailed you sooner. I will do so, soon, really. 🙂
me! me! i would love to try yours. i have a saldacco and i’ll even throw in a sad (barely used) mandoline for good measure 🙂
Rhea, she’s all yours! We have a deal.