Want to know more about some of the foods and drinks marketed to you and your children?
Each week over on my Instagram page (@mealtimebuildingblocks) I choose a food or drink product and tell you what I really think about it. It's always published on a Tuesday, hence the "Chewsday Reviews" title!
Each month I'll share a collection of reviews here on the blog.
I can't wait to teach you more about the products out there, and perhaps even highlight some sneaky marketing techniques designed to prey on vulnerable Mums and Dads!
Please feel free to request a review of any products that you'd like to know more about
Due to popular demand, I've had a look at the kiddie specific yoghurts. Today I've picked my winner, but the other brands might get a feature over the coming weeks... So without further ado, I present Calciyum yoghurt
🔶Ingredients: milk, concentrated skim milk, cream, strawberry, and then sugar.
🔹Great to see that sugar contributes less than 4% of the total product.
🔹This is one of the only yoghurts that doesn't have sugar listed second or third on the ingredients list (which would mean it's the ingredient in the second or third highest concentration!)
🔹Contains live cultures, in the form of B. Lactic (common probiotic used in yoghurt)
🔶 The positives:
🔹25% less sugar than other kiddie yoghurts (other than Tamar Valley kids yoghurt)
🔹high calcium content (1 tub provides 40% of a toddlers calcium requirements)
🔹comes in a tub to be eaten with a spoon, which promotes good biting and chewing skills (which squeezie packs do not!) It does also come in a squeezie pack for times when mess is not an option, however, the squeezies have 25% more sugar...
🔹Much cheaper than other kiddie yoghurt (41c per tub)
🔹It's a smooth yoghurt, for all those texture-sensitive kiddies
🔶 The negatives:
🔹Slightly more saturated fat than some other yoghurts (0.4-0.9g more per serve)
🔹Only comes in a 12 pack, so if your child doesn't like a particular flavour, then you end up with 4 of those.
🔶 The marketing:
🔹All the yoghurts advertise that they contain no artificial colours, flavours or preservatives, and this yoghurt is no exception
🔹The packaging refers to providing calcium and vitamin D for strong bones. Realistically, we get very little vitamin D from our diet, but it certainly doesn't hurt!
🔶 The alternatives:
🔹I think this is a pretty good option overall!
🔹Other yoghurts with less than 12g of sugar per 100g, and calcium content of more than 200mg per 100g.
Kiddylicious Raspberry Crispie Tiddlers (12 months and over)
🔶Ingredients: mainly fruit juice concentrate.
🔹This is basically fruit juice with the water removed. Juice is fruit with the pulp and fibre removed. So essentially this product is fruit but with all the good stuff removed, and only the sugar left.
🔹No added sugar
🔹Almost 5% fibre (although it only works out to 0.5g per serve. Kids aged 1-3years need 14g of fibre per day)
🔹Suitable for most allergies (no gluten, milk, nuts or egg)
🔹This product is more than 50% sugar (even though it all comes from the juice concentrate). It contains more than a teaspoon of sugar per packet (and a packet only weighs 12g!)
🔹This product claims to have a portion of fruit in every packet. This is EXTREMELY misleading! This product does not contain the equivalent to one serve of fruit, nor the fibre in one serve of fruit.
🔹This product works out to be $150 per kilo (compare that to the cost of fresh raspberries- which are usually considered very expensive!)
🔶Alternatives: (cheaper and more fibre)
🔹A spoonful of sultanas or raisins
🔹A handful of raspberries or other berries
🔹A piece of fruit blended and frozen into an icy pole
🔶Ingredients: milk, cream, sugar and chocolate are the main ingredients
🔹three out of four of these main ingredients are NOT 'everyday foods'
🔶 The positives:
🔹No artificial colours or flavours
🔹Portioned into child size servings
🔹42c per serving
🔶 The negatives:
🔹There is no nutritional quality to this product. It has high levels of saturated fat and sugar. 33% of the kilojoules in this product come directly from saturated fat (kilojoule counting is not something I recommend- however, imagine 1/3 of this mousse as pure butter). 35% of the kilojoules come from sugar.
🔹The mousse comes in a 12-pack. Considering this is not an everyday food, you'd have to have a LOT of children to use this as a sometimes food before the expiry date. I imagine these would become an everyday food if there were so many in the fridge.
🔹This mousse is marketed as a 'dairy dessert'. I think the use of the word 'dairy' is somewhat misleading, as this product does not have sufficient calcium to even include it on the nutrition panel. It is just a dessert.
🔹The mousse was on the bottom level of the supermarket fridge section, at the perfect height for young children to see, with Minions on the cover. Pester power at its finest!
🔶 The alternatives (more calcium, better nutrient quality)
🔹A glass of milk with a teaspoon of milo
🔹A frozen banana blended with a square of chocolate/chocolate powder.
🔹Some banana fruit art shaped like a minion!
This review popped out at me because of its odd name!
Fruit Zombies by Nice & Natural (and let's be honest, we only want to buy natural zombies! )
🔶Ingredients: the first three ingredients are reconstituted juice, glucose syrup (sugar) and sugar.
🔹The rest of the ingredients are basically gels and oils to hold the sugar together.
🔹The quality of the reconstituted juice is unclear (I'm guessing it wasn't 100% fruit juice to start with, because the sugar content of the product is MUCH higher than 100% juice).
🔹no artificial colours or flavours (although natural colours and flavours are added)
🔹nut free and gluten free (for those with allergies)
🔹I think you've already guessed my first point. This is just juice with added sugar, made into a solid food. It's 60% sugar by weight. There's nothing else in it.
🔹I doubt these snacks would fill kiddies up at snack time, given they only weigh about 17g.
🔹I dislike claims that suggest "65% fruit juice" is a good thing. Especially when they don't clarify what sort of fruit juice (100% vs sweetened juice).
🔹Not sure that zombies or eyes popping out of heads make parents think this food is a good choice for kids. It is very much an occasional food.
🔹$31 a kilo is expensive for a product made from cheap ingredients.
🔶The alternatives: (cheaper and more nutritious)
🔹apples or strawberries (fresh or frozen)
🔹dried apples (similar texture but with fibre and no added sugar)