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Reviews > Food > Energy Bars and Drinks > Ola Loa ENERGY Multi Vitamin Drink Mix > Test Report by Kurt Papke

Ola Loa ENERGY Drink

Test Series by Kurt Papke

Initial Report - November 21, 2009

Field Report - March 18, 2010

Tester Information

Name: Kurt Papke
Age: 56
Gender: Male
Height: 6' 4" (193 cm)
Weight: 225 lbs (102 kg)
Email address: kwpapke at gmail dot com
City, State, Country: Tucson, Arizona USA

My backpacking background has mostly been in Minnesota where I have lived most of my adult life.  This last year included hiking in Michigan, Wisconsin, Utah, Colorado, south and North Dakota and Oregon.  My preferred/typical backpack trip has been one week, mostly in the Spring/Fall seasons, but I started doing more winter camping last year.  I recently moved to Tucson to take a new job, and am excitedly exploring the surrounding mountain ranges.

Initial Report

Product Facts

Drink mix in 30-packet boxes

Ola Loa has a line of four types of powdered drink mixes:
  1. ENERGY: effervescent multi-vitamin-mineral-amino formula.  A one-a-day multivitamin that is drunk by dissolving in water instead of taken in pill form.
  2. REPAIR: effervescent multi-vitamin targeted for bone and joint pain.
  3. SPORT: hydration electrolyte drink with vitamins.
  4. KIDS: drinkable multi-vitamin for children.
This test will be for the energy drink.

Product Information
Manufacturer
Ola Loa, LLC
Manufacturer website
http://www.drinkyourvitamins.com/
Year manufactured
2009
Variety
ENERGY (SPORT, KIDS, and REPAIR also available)
Flavors tested
Cran-raspberry, tropical, and orange.  These are all of the available ENERGY flavors.
MSRP
US $24.99 for box of 30 packets
Total Weight (measured)
Measurement is average of 10 packets
Cran Raspberry 9.5 g (0.34 oz)
Tropical 8.5 g (0.30 oz)
Orange  8.7 g (0.31 oz)
Net Weight (specs)
Cran Raspberry 7.5 g (0.26 oz)
Tropical 7.0 g (0.25 oz)
Orange 7.0 g (0.25 oz)
Packet dimensions
2.75 in x 4 in (7 cm x 10.2 cm), thickness was very small and highly irregular
Serving size (1 packet)
4-6 oz (118-177 ml)
Quantity to be tested
30 packets of each flavor were supplied

I weighed an empty Cran Raspberry packet at approximately 1 g (0.04 oz).  This accounts for the apparent discrepancy between the measured and manufacturer-supplied weights.

In the table below, all three flavors have the same nutritional information, though the other ingredients do differ slightly. "*" in the table indicates no recommended daily value has been established.

Product Contents
Contents
Cran-Raspberry
Tropical
Orange
Other Ingredients
Fructose, Flavor from Cranberry and Raspberry, Citric Acid, Beet powder (color), Stevia, Grape skin extract, Beta carotene
Fructose, Citric Acid, Aspartic acid, Tartaric acid, Malic acid, natural fruit flavors, Stevia Fructose, Citric Acid, Aspartic acid, Tartaric acid, Malic acid, natural fruit flavors, Stevia
Nutritional Information
Calories
5
Calories from fat
0
Total carbohydrates
1 g
Sugars
1 g
Vitamins
Amount per serving
% Daily Value
Vitamin C
1000 mg
1670 %
Vitamin B1
2 mg
133%
Vitamin B2
2 mg
117%
Vitamin B3
10 mg
50%
Vitamin B6
10 mg
500%
Folic Acid
600 mcg
150%
Vitamin B12
100 mcg
1670%
Pantothenic Acid
10 mg
100%
Biotin
100 mcg
35%
Vitamin D3
200 iu
50%
Vitamin E
30 iu
100%
Vitamin K1
20 mcg
25%
Coenzyme Q10
25 mg
*
Vitamin A
1000 iu
20%
Lipoic Acid
1 mg
*
Choline bitartrate
10 mg
*
Beta carotene
3333 iu (orange flavor only)
66%
Herbs
Bromelain
10 mg
*
Citrus Bioflavonoids
100 mg
*
Cranberry powder
250 mg (cranberry flavor only)
*

Minerals
Potassium
200 mg
6%
Sodium
35 mg
<2%
Calcium
29 mg
3%
Magnesium
25 mg
6%
Zinc
5 mg
30%
Manganese
1.5 mg
75%
Copper
500 mcg
25%
Molybdenum
75 mcg
100%
Selenium
50 mcg
70%
Chromium
100 mcg
80%
Iodine
50 mcg
30%
Boron
1 mg
*
Amino Acids
N-Acetyl Cysteine 50 mg
*
L-Arginine
100 mg
*
L-Lysine 100 mg
*

L-Glycine 1000 mg
*

TMG-Betaine 1000 mg
*

L-Glutamine
100 mg
*

Notable in the table above are the low amount of calories and sodium.  Notable are the large variety of vitamins, minerals and amino acids.  My hope is drinking this stuff will be like Popeye having his can of spinach!

Initial Inspection


Front of package
Back of package
Front of package
Rear of package including extensive list of nutrients

Initial Experiences

The packets open easily with no tools -- they tear open with no problems or spillage.  The powder is easily poured into a water bottle, even with a very small mouth, by forming the packet into a V.  I was able to pour the powder into a bottle without spilling any powder in the process.  The powder dissolved easily with just a few shakes.

I followed my usual procedure and attempted to use the product without first reading the instructions.  I mixed it with 1 L (1 qt) of tap water.  The color seemed a little light, but pleasant.  The taste of the orange was pleasant, but seemed very weak. I couldn't detect any of the effervescence.

Then I read the package instructions: it called for mixing with 4-6 oz (118-177 ml) of water.  I mixed a packet of the tropical flavor with 4 oz (118 ml) of water, and it frothed immediately, and dissolved with no problem with a quick stir.  I took a sip, and it had a very nice fruit punch flavor.

First Impressions

I am really excited to see if there is any impact of a daily ingestion of the energy drink, as opposed my usual multivitamin tablet.  I intend to drink one packet every morning to overcome my usual slight dehydration upon awakening.

Kudos:

  • Flavors tasted so far are excellent.

Concerns:

  • None to speak of.
Please return to the site in about 3 months for the Field Report when I've had a chance to experience any impact of an extended use of the product.  I typically take a daily multi-vitamin tablet, but I hope to replace that with a daily Ola Loa ENERGY packet.

Field Report

Test Conditions

During the Field Report period I drank one packet of the Ola Loa Energy drink every day dissolved in a small glass of water, consuming all 90 packets during the last 3 months.  I found the individual packets to be an excess of packaging for daily use at home, however as I mention below the opposite is true on a backpacking trip.

The product also accompanied me on the following backpacking trip:

Date
November 14-15, 2009
Location
Saguaro National Park, just east of Tucson, Arizona in the Rincon Mountains
Altitude range (from GPS/topo map)
3088 ft to 5979 ft (m to m)
Distance (from GPS)
13.81 miles (km)
Temperature range
25 F to 75 F (C to C)

I did not take any of the Energy drink with me on my many day hikes during the test period due to the parallel testing of the Ola Loa Sport drink.

Saguaro National Park

Ever since I moved to Tucson I had good intentions of doing some backpacking in Saguaro National Park.  There are actually two parts to this park, one on the west side of the city in the Tucson Mountains, and one on the east side in the Rincon Mountains.  I heard the view from the Rincons was spectacular, so on the weekend of November 14th I thought I'd give it a try.

I took one packet of the Energy drink with me on the trip and drank it in the morning while my tea was heating up.  It was a nice way to start the day with a little hydration and some essential vitamins and minerals.  I appreciated the single-serving packet as it minimized the weight and bulk I had to carry, and made preparation a snap.

Mixing It Up

I tried the following combination of Ola Loa Energy drinks with real juice.  In each case I mixed one packet of Energy drink with 6 oz (177 ml) water and 6 oz (177 ml) of fresh juice:

Ola Loa Flavor
Juice Type
Comments
Orange
Fresh orange juice
The real orange juice helped mask the somewhat medicinal odor
Cran-Raspberry
Fresh pomegranate
Excellent combination

Other Observations

After getting used to the flavors and sampling it on a daily basis, I began to smell the vitamin fragrance of the drinks.  The effervescence does help mask this to some extent, but it is noticeable to me.  My preference for the flavors was:
  1. Orange - consistently pleasant.
  2. Cran-Raspberry - slightly tart, very fruity.
  3. Tropical - a little bland for me.  I like a little more zip to my flavors, but of course that is my personal bias.

Summary

Overall I enjoyed getting my daily dose of vitamins in a good-tasting morning drink.  During the test period I had one illness, a nasty cold right at Christmas.  I generally am in pretty good health and often go several years between even getting colds, so I was a little surprised I got sick while taking the daily supplement.  On the other hand, I am in a new job working in an office all day long in a new locale, so I am being exposed to a whole new array of germs, so maybe it is not so surprising.

Since I am accustomed to taking a daily multi-vitamin tablet, the ingestion of the Ola Loa Energy nutrients did not seem to make a marked different in my health and well-being from what I had been experiencing, but of course this is very subjective.

What I like about the product

  • Good-tasting drink, not too sweet or salty like some hydration drinks
  • Nice bubbles
  • Powerful daily dose of vitamins, minerals and amino acids

What might be improved

  • Spendy.  At almost a dollar-a-day I would find it difficult to justify the expense of the product unless I could feel a certain increase in health and well-being.
  • The vitamin smell is perceptible, though the effervescence helps to mask it.

Many thanks to Ola Loa and BackpackGearTest.org for the opportunity to test this product.



Read more reviews of Ola Loa gear
Read more gear reviews by Kurt Papke

Reviews > Food > Energy Bars and Drinks > Ola Loa ENERGY Multi Vitamin Drink Mix > Test Report by Kurt Papke



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