04 March 2008

Attune Wellness bars: Chocolate + probiotics = mmmm

Attune Wellness BarIn what may be the most delicious PR pitch ever, I recently received a box full of Attune Wellness bars and an accompanying email that suggested them as a good on-the-go snack hack. In my experience, energy bars (or protein bars, or health bars, or whatever you want to call them) are better snacks for me than for my kids, simply because they don't like the taste or texture very much. I figured that if Attune bars could pass muster with the Dornfest Spawn, they were worth talking about.

The "wellness" part of the name owes to the presence of probiotics -- the super good-for-you live active cultures that mingle, cavort and party with the little guys already living in your digestive tract. The supposed result: a healthier, happier digestive system, and hopefully, a stronger immune system as well. Probiotic-enhanced foods are popular in Europe (when we were in the UK and France a couple years ago they were all over the place), but are only now becoming popular here.

Attune bars come in two varieties: Yogurt & Granola and Chocolate. The Yogurt & Granola bars are nubbly, chewy, and come in fruity flavors, and the Chocolate bars look like...candy.

Which variety do you think my kids (and I) went for?

The chocolate bars come in three flavors: dark chocolate, mint chocolate (my weakness) and chocolate crisp. (There's also a white chocolate bar, but I consider white chocolate an impostor, so I won't discuss it here.) These were some luscious yummies, and between the small size (which keeps the calorie count at 100) and the probiotics, I felt rather saintly eating them. Interestingly enough, one Attune chocolate bar contains more active cultures, less sugar, and more calcium than many sweetened yogurts. Still feels more like a treat than a snack, but it's a nice alternative.

The granola bars tasted good as well, but still didn't make it past my kids. No surprises there. For what it's worth, I liked the Lemon Creme Attune bar more than Lemon Luna bars, which I used to buy by the case at Trader Joe's.

You can find Attune bars at Safeway, Whole Foods and a bunch of other grocery stores. You can also purchase them online at attunefoods.com. Use the coupon code FM001 for 20% off your online order.

Your comments

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I'm with you on the white chocolate! How can something be called chocolate if it does not contain a single iota of cocoa?

Whoo...these sound pretty good. Healthy and tasty.

This sounds too good to be true. Last time I tried a "healthy" chocolate bar (it was supposed to ease PMS symptoms) I nearly threw it at my DH...and it wasn't even that time of the month!

I trust you, though, so I may give this one a try.

This sounds like an advert, not a parent tip. The research is out on these probiotics, and other unrefined less surgary natural foods, like a yogurt and apple are far better for children. The less kids eat from industrialised wrapped food the better.

Lucy: Not an advert (although Attune did end up buying an ad on the site, this review isn't a part of that). I'm not trying to sell Attune bars nor am I convinced either way about the health properties of probiotics. But part of what I do at Parent Hacks is to share my honest feedback about products people send me that I find worthwhile. Most of what gets pitched never makes it to the site.

I really like the fact that these do not contain corn syrup or derivatives thereof. I think I'm neutral about the probiotics - there are studies on both sides as to whether they help or not, but they don't seem to hurt. The only thing I might question is the seemingly high (comparatively speaking) amount of *saturated* fat. 4 grams (20% of daily value) seems to be a pretty high amount for the relatively low calories. Probably wouldn't want to make these a daily snack.

I love the site but I'm with Lucy on this one. Don't see how this qualifies as a parent tip. The healthiest way to feed our kids (and us) is to say no to the neverending line of processed and packaged foods that contain no real food ingredients but either are high in sugar so they taste good or they tout an over-hyped nutrient/novel ingredient.

Well, I think it's a great tip for parents of teenagers~ my DD has a sweet tooth and tends to get sick from candy and snacks she buys. Her immune system needs a boost as well as needing more calcium since she stopped drinking milk. Probiotics have helped me with abdominal issues. Thanks for this tip.

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