The yearly Natural Products Expo in Anaheim, CA, always sets the stage for the new and upcoming trends and products in the world of healthy eating and living.
Registered Dietitian (and friend of Naturally Savvy), Ashley Koff, and host Andrea Donsky both attended the Expo and were able to explore some of the hottest products now on the market.
From coconut waters and coffee-infused food products to new turmeric supplements and green juices, there was no shortage of healthy eating options.
Listen in to hear which products Ashley and Andrea recommend, as well as specific brands that provide top-quality supplements.
RadioMD Presents: Naturally Savvy | Original Air Date: March 11, 2015
Hosts: Andrea Donsky, RHN & Lisa Davis
Guest: Ashley Koff, RD
She's not here to judge. She's here to report the honest news on healthy living. She's Andrea Donsky along with Lisa Davis. It's time for Naturally Savvy.
LISA: My wonderful co-host Andrea Donsky got to go to the Natural Products Expo in California. I sound like a little kid. "She got to go and I didn't." But, no. I'm really glad that she got to go. Someone else who got to go is the wonderful Ashley Koff who joins us once a month. We're going to talk about the awesome products. I was so excited when I read the list that Ashley sent. I can't wait to try them all.
LISA: It looks amazing. One of the things on the list I'm just going to get out of the way so I don't think about it the whole time, is the cocoa whip by So Delicious. I put mine in the freezer so it was almost like the consistency of ice cream, but the first ingredient is organic coconut oil. Then, I just put it with berries and it's like my daughter's favorite dessert and mine. You only need a little bit. It's amazing. What other amazing things did you find there?
ASHLEY: Yes. You know what I would say is like I feel like I said we're so "coocoo for coconuts" and I think like coconuts is really blowing up in a bunch of different places and I think that part of it is awesome. I also think that there is a sustainability effort around sourcing coconuts so that we're doing it the right way. That made me happy. I had a number of those conversations. So, even like, I loved—which sounded gross, I have to say, at first blush, because I love Harmless Harvest-- all of their different coconut waters-- but they had a coffee coconut water and I was like, "I don't know." Then, I tasted it. I'm like, "I totally love this." So, I really think that there were some very fun things in the coconut space. On the flip side or to that end, the coffee. Coffee is everywhere. I think that that is awesome because one of the things that I find is a real issue for my clients is that a lot of times, they actually are having coffee without any food and they've confused "energy" that they get from coffee, which is just really a stimulant response, right? So, I love that you could actually have your coffee in a food form. But, there's a caveat to that and that is, if you are having your coffee in a food form, you definitely don't want to be having your coffee also in the beverage form. So, one of the things that we have to be careful about in that space is not overcoffeeing.
ASHLEY: But, Barnana has these amazing chocolate covered bananas and the founder is actually a triathlete and he was like, "The coffee is so great for you from performance standpoint and getting the most out of your workout." That was really amazing. Then, I just think the supplemental food area was phenomenal also. I saw great ways to be getting in your turmeric which I think is, one of those ingredients that it's so good for us, but it's hard to get it. First of all, I don't like some of the turmeric waters and other things where they're giving us just tiny amounts or extracts of just the curcuminoids and so I love seeing organic, whole turmeric that you could get in a vegetarian capsule. I saw that at New Chapter but I also saw a Gaia turmeric boost that you could add to your smoothie. Tumeric's kind of a hard one to figure out what to do or to always have access to. So, I loved that.
ANDREA: I tried the one at Gaia. I really liked it. It actually was really, really good and I really like that company. I got a chance to talk to them at the show and I love what they're doing, so that was really interesting for me in terms of learning about Gaia in particular.
ASHLEY: Yes, and, you know, I think one of the things that I'm super passionate about is the quality standards in dietary supplements and we're working on that part, but there are some companies, I would say New Chapter and Gaia in that space, are two that I really look to for the quality assessment. So, that was pretty phenomenal. Then, I always am so happy, they probably stand out so much more for me because of everything else that's going on but, boy, am I happy that at like every turn, there was an organic juice that was HPP that were greens. Everything from, downstairs, we had Daily Greens which is a company that all of their juices will always have greens as the base. So, that that was really cool. Then, on the main floor, you had Lumi Love U Mean It and she was doing really fun shots. She even included my new favorite, broccoli leaves. She included that in in a couple of her juices. Upstairs, and I had actually had the tiger nut folks to try the broccoli leaves, so they did a blend of the two that was mind-blowing. I love it because I was there with my friend from ABC News and she never likes juices and she was like, "Oh, my god. I would drink this," because it had 9 grams of fiber in it because you're getting that from the tiger nut.
ANDREA: I know. I saw that juice with the tiger nut.
ASHLEY: That was really fun.
ANDREA: That was so yummy.
ASHLEY: Did you taste it?
ANDREA: I did. Not with the broccoli leaf, but I tasted it at the end of the show, actually. They were sampling it and I could not believe. I mean, I love tiger nut. That's one of my favorite snacks.
ANDREA: But, I couldn't believe that they had it in a juice form and I was like, "Oh, my gosh. That's amazing."
ASHLEY: Yes. Yes.
LISA: I have to interject because I don't know what a tiger nut is and I'm wondering if our listeners know. I don't even know what that is.
ASHLEY: I always say that the nuttiest part is that it's actually a root vegetable. So, a tiger nut is an old root vegetable that looks sort of like a mini brain or a tiny hazelnut that got wilted, but it actually is very high in fiber. It's high in that resistant starch to the tune of 9 grams per bottle if you're making it into like an almond milk, so they make it into a tiger nut milk. So, it's a really great, super useful and, actually a lot of Paleo folks are using it. There's a flour, a tiger nut flour, you can cook with is as well.
I would say on that part…
LISA: You know, it's funny you just said Paleo.
LISA: I was about to ask you about the Paleo. I'm so glad you brought that up. I've had that Zaza Paleo dessert. Some of those. Those are fantastic.
ASHLEY: And, you know what I loved? It's like there was a Paleo space, but it wasn't like so over your head egregious errors. There were some people doing really good quality jerkies and some Paleo chocolates and things like that. There were some places, like I saw water that had Paleo, vegan and gluten-free was how it was begin advertised. I walked up to them and I was like, "Let's just say water. Like, this is ridiculous." So, I think, let's be clear, water is always Paleo or not.
LISA: It goes too far.
ASHLEY: But, I also thought the really interesting thing was the Paleo/vegan space. So, looking at things like how you would use your seeds and how you would do, so if you are Paleo and you want to be plant-based, really giving a nod to that.
Andrea, I don't know if you had and, full disclosure, I work with Manitoba, but, oh, my gosh, I've been waiting for these hemp heart bites to come to market. Talk about a snack that I don't ever want to be separated from. I'm so…Like, it's just so delicious. Yeah. Really, really good. It's crazy.
LISA: What was that called?
ASHLEY: Manitoba Harvest hemp heart bites. Because when what happens when you do those hemp hearts is, you get your essential fatty acids, you get your protein, you get your fiber and it's pretty low in carbohydrate naturally, so you add a little bit of honey to it and you don't overdo it and it tastes like…I grew up with my family eating, as a dessert, halva and it kind of reminded me of that, but…
LISA: Oh, yes. Halva.
ASHLEY: But, it's just that sort of delicious…And they bites are really appropriate sized, kid-friendly, etc. Speaking of kids, everything from one of the juice companies had half pints—that was the Daily Greens, which…So, they had in there and then we had all these great…I think like kind of gone is the "we're going to try and hide the veggies from you" and, instead, like, celebrate kids and veggies. I saw that in a lot of places. I also saw appropriate portion sizes for kids which I thought was great. So, that seems really good, too. Yes.
LISA: Well, Ashley, it sounds like it was such a blast and I know you have a great qualitarian, I wish I had said that word correctly, newsletter. Tell us how we can get that.
ASHLEY: Sure. You can, on my website on Facebook just at AshleyKoffApproved.com or Ashley Koff Approved on Facebook. You can sign up for the newsletter and it has all of these finds in there as well as on my blog. I wrote up all of these different trends.
LISA: You can follow Ashley @AshleyKoff. We always love having you on. Next year, gals, one of you has got to come by, pick me up and kidnap me. Okay?
ASHLEY: You're coming. You're absolutely coming.
LISA: Because I am so sad. I really am. I have a question. If there is a Natural Expo West? Is there a Natural Expo East?
ASHLEY: September in Baltimore. September in Baltimore. Come visit me. I live right by there.
LISA: Oh, my gosh. I can make that work. Okay, why don't all go, gals? That would be so fun. Do you usually go to that?
ASHLEY: Perfect. Yes, you can cover it from there.
ANDREA: That's it. We've got to go, then. You know, what? We've got to meet up for tea there and make some time and then sit and talk and see what's new.
ASHLEY: Meet up for tea? We'll walk it together. We'll cover it together. It'd be so fun.
ANDREA: Let's do it. I'm in. Love it.
ANDREA: I love it.
LISA: September you said?
ANDREA: Yes. September in Baltimore. It will be beautiful.
LISA: Woo hoo. That will be fun. Alright, Ashley. Well, people should definitely check you out. I love AshleyKoffApproved.com. I want to thank everyone for listening. Hopefully, you can go to those expos, too. Make sure to like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter @RadioMD and @NaturallySavvy.
I hope you all have a great day and stay well.