Product Review: NuGo Slim Bars

Disclosure: I received a free sample to try. I was not asked to write a review but volunteered to do it. 

We are always on a lookout for good gluten-free protein bars. They are very handy as on-the-go snacks, given our active lifestyle. Just any bar won’t do: we look for a good mix of carbs and protein to better sustain both energy and blood sugar levels. Now, there are bazillion different protein bars out there. Finding one that is GF can be a challenge. Finding one that is GF AND does not have a bazillion carbs is a double-challenge. Finding one that is GF, reasonably “carby” and does not cost $5 per bar? Triple change. Finding one that is GF, reasonably carby, reasonably priced AND tastes good? Good luck.

We’ve found a couple of favorites so far: Perfect Bars and Kind Bars are always well-stocked in our house. However, Kind Bars are rather nutty, shall we say. Perfect Bars are rather carby, and they fair best when kept at cooler than room temperature, so they are not the best thing to pack for a long day out and about. So when a NuGO rep contacted me and offered a sample of NuGO Slim bars, I was very eager to try them, as we can always use more good quality protein bars in our arsenal.

Before I accepted the offer, I did some research. We are not interested in any foods that use artificial sweeteners. I was relieved to learn that NuGO products use real ingredients. Pass!

We received a sample of several NuGo Slim flavors: Peanut Crunch, Espresso, Brownie Crunch, and Raspberry Truffle. All of them fit the bill perfectly in terms of carbs/protein ratio. They are around 17-20 g. of carbs and 15-17g. of protein per bar. However, they are also high in fiber, and if you remember anything from this post about what fiber does to carbs absorption, you may recall that when something has 5g. or more of fiber we subtract it from the total number of carbs. Therefore, most NuGo Slim bars are about 10 g. of carbs for us. I do not understand where the “Net Carb 6g” claim comes from –  they must calculate it in a different way. We ignored it and calculated carbs the way we usually do it.

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Next up, price. If you go to the product shop on the website, a 12-pack costs $21 plus shipping. (Shipping is free when you spend $100). On Amazon it may cost a little more but it’s possible to get free shipping with Amazon Prime. Either way, the price is just under $2 per bar, which is pretty reasonable, and it falls in the middle of our two other favorites. Kind Bars are a tad cheaper; Perfect Bars are a tad more expensive. Now, I have not been able to find NuGO Slim bars in any stores close to our house. It looks like we would have to venture a little bit farther out to a store that we do not normally shop at. I haven’t had a chance to check prices and availability there yet. Of course we can always order online but I would prefer to buy a dozen bars of different flavors instead of committing to a 12-pack of one flavor.

Last but not least, taste! V loved all of the flavors except for Raspberry Truffle. I really liked Raspberry Truffle but was not crazy about all other flavors. As usual, V and I tend to differ on what we like and dislike when it comes to flavors and textures. However, what I like is not really relevant because the bars are mainly for V, and she gave them an enthusiastic thumbs up.

So, let’s go down our checklist. GF = check. Reasonably carby = check. Reasonably priced = check. Tastes good = check. We have a winner!

Diabetes Encounter in the Wild

We are standing in line at our local BBQ joint, figuring out how many platters of ribs we should order to satisfy the gang and how many gazillion carbs to bolus V for. I pull out her Dexcom that displays a perfect 100. “Look at what we are about to ruin!” – I announce to my family.

“Hey!” I turn around and a stranger right behind us in line is waiving his Dexcom at us! His is showing 99 and going up.

It’s amazing how upon encountering another fellow T1 there is this instant bond. We are in it together. We speak the same language. We talk about the awesomeness that is Dexcom. V shows him off her new Medical ID bracelet and the guy pulls out his Medical ID necklace to show V. He tells her how they are twins, given that they are only 1 point apart. We wonder how many carbs we have to bolus for. (Gazillion, we all agree.) My hubby remarks how he’s never seen another T1 without a bag full of supplies. “I got it all right here!” – the guy’s partner chimes in, pointing to her purse. The guy talks a little bit about living with T1 for 36 years, how he has been living well with it, and how he prefers to stay old school with the shots and no pump.

For a few brief minutes, until it’s our turn to order the food and move on, we are family. I really love these random diabetes encounters. What are the odd that in a big restaurant in a big city a random person behind you also has T1D? And that they have nearly identical reading on their Dexcom? Maybe it only makes sense if you are living this T1D life, but it’s these little random things that put a smile on my face. And it totally makes me feel like this:

Image credit: yadadarcyyada.com

Image credit: yadadarcyyada.com