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Product Review: BariLife Lemonade Multi-Vitamin Drink Mix

I’m gonna tell you the truth. Beyonce messed the word Lemonade up for me. Now whenever I hear the word, I think of cheating husbands, divorce, and smashing things with a baseball bat.

THANKS BEY.

Anyhoo…that’s not what we are here to talk about today. I just had to get that out so that I didn’t make cheesy Beyonce references throughout this product review.

Today we are here to talk about BariLife’s Lemonade Multi-Vitamin drink mix. And, believe it or not, there’s quite a bit to talk about!

What is BariLife?

BariLife is a company I first encountered at the Obesity Action Coalition “Your Weight Matters” Convention. I also knew of them through my dear friend, runner-girl, obesity-rebel and general bad-ass, Pandora Williams.

From here, I’ll show you what’s on the BariLife website, then tell you what I personally know about them. First, from their website “About Us” section:

“The Bari Life® formula was customized by a surgeon for his own patients based on the research of hundreds of real patients and the highest industry standards. The research and products garnered enthusiastic reviews from both patients and dietitians, support from other surgeons, and the endorsement of a highly qualified medical review board. Now, Bari Life® is confidently taking this proprietary, proven blend forward to others who need it. Giving patients what they need to succeed conveniently and at a more affordable price.”

Was that as thrilling for you as it was for me?

Seriously though. Most websites “about us” sections are not that great (which is why many companies hire professional writers like me to re-do them…companies…holla! #ShamlessSelfPromo)

Let me tell you what I know.

BariLife is run by a couple named Derek and Guinn. They are beautiful people. And when I say that I mean it literally. They are beautiful people. Very nice, but also very physically attractive. I point that out because part of their charm is that they exude energy and good health. So that is to say, they could tell me to hop on one foot for twenty minutes a day as the secret to long life and I’d probably believe them because they look that vibrant and healthy and energetic.

Frankly, it would be annoying if they weren’t such good folks. Moving on!

Lemonade Multi-Vitamin Drink Mix

So we’ve been through the paces with multi-vitamin drink mixes before. Some are good and worth our hard-earned money. Some are not. I try not to go into reviews with any pre-conceived notions.

Starting off with the packaging, I was encouraged, though, for a few reasons.

  1. Like Derek and Guinn, it is bright and cheery.
  2. There’s a hella lot of useful info, as opposed to extraneous, self-promotional copy. (Much as I love to read that stuff aloud, sometimes you just want to know, “What will this product do for me?”)
  3. Further, they give an extra layer of information. Check it out below.

Yeah. Now granted other vitamin products may have this information on it. I’d be willing to admit that they might. Never have I seen that information so prominently placed, though. For folks who aren’t so familiar with how bariatric vitamins work (or how ingredients can interact with other things they are taking) I think this is extremely helpful.

Aside from that, here are the stats for the vitamins (because, of course, they have calories and whatnot!):

You can read the full information on this product – including a complete ingredients list – by visiting the BariLife website. And of course anytime we review a vitamin product, I have to tell you to be sure to check the content of the vitamins against the American Society for Metabolic & Bariatric Surgery (ASMBS) recommendations, which you can find here.

How does it mix?

So now that we’ve gotten through the technical stuff, let’s talk about the actual experience of drinking this stuff. Mixing it is fairly straight-forward. For the purposes of this review I used a single packet.

First you dump the packet into a cup of some sort.

Then you add 8-10 ounces of water. I split the difference and added 9.

Then you stir, stir, stir!

Until you get something that looks like this. Now at a point I decided I wanted to switch glasses for the remaining photos and while I was sorting that out, two things happened that I wanted to talk to you about. The first is that if you let it sit for a while, it will separate. This is NOT a mark against BariLife. It’s more a necessary evil of dealing with vitamin drink mixes. The vitamins are “heavier” than the water, so they eventually sink to the bottom. No worries! A quick stir and all is right with the world again.

The second thing I wanted to talk about is “leave-behind,” which all vitamin drink mixes seem to have. It’s for the same reason, but it happens even if you haven’t experienced separation of the vitamins from the liquid. Here’s the important thing to remember: do not throw out the leave-behind! Some of that is vitamins!

I just wanted to point that out to anyone who might be new to vitamin drink mixes. It’s normal and happens with plenty of products, and this one is no different. Gravity. What are you gonna do?

How does it taste?

So remember I decided to use 9 oz. of water. Well, when I did that, it tasted like…sweet. I got the ever-faintest bit of lemon. But it wasn’t super strong. (In the interest of full disclosure I’m one of those “make your nips pop out” tart lemonade loving folks.)

The next time I made it, I dropped it down to 8 oz. That was better but still not super strong. It took going down to about 6 oz. before I got near what I think of as legit lemonade. And it still wasn’t super-tart. So I added some lemon juice to it! That did something interesting.

Remember that candy…Lemonheads? That’s exactly what it tasted like! I kid you not. I didn’t mind that at all.

Now there may be some scientific reason why the mix could not be more tart than it was. Maybe the acid interacts with a whichamahoogee which then prevents a whosamacallit from absorbing. I don’t know. But if you, like me, choose tart lemonade over, say, collagen injections, to keep that perfect pucker? You may find the flavor a little weaker than you like. But if you have some True Lemon hanging around in your cabinet, whip out a packet and you totally get that Lemonheads moment!

I also tried this mix with a regular sugar-free drink stick in a 20oz. bottle of water and that was nice too. The flavor didn’t detract from the flavor of the drink mix I used (I used tropical punch) and since I used 20 oz. of water, it wasn’t overly sweet to me.

How much does it cost?

Like I said, I received both a canister and a box of the packets. They are slightly different prices, so let’s talk about both.

  • The canister is $31.99 and it comes with 60 scoops. Each serving size = 1 scoop = 1 dose of vitamins. If you sign up for subscribe & save the price goes down to $28.15 (Remember, that for some surgeries, the ASMBS recommends doing two daily doses of multi-vitamin, so 60 scoops generally = 30 day supply.) The price per dose for the regular price is $0.53/dose. For subscribe and save it’s $0.46
  • The powder packets are $23.99 and come with 30 packets, which comes out to $0.79/packet.

Final Verdict

So the pro’s: I find the packets to be convenient. Mixing them was a snap.

Con’s: While the flavor was ok, it didn’t come across strongly to me as “lemonade.”

Would I use these? Yes, I actually would. This may sound weird to you, but I’d actually totally invest in the packets. I’d probably leave the canister. Just because of how I personally relate to vitamins, I need stuff that can easily go with me. I’d buy a box of these, stash them in my purse and use them at work or while traveling. Which…HEY…these are airplane friendly! Yay! (Traveling with powder-form vitamins can get interesting, Foodies.)

So that’s my two cents. What do you think? To check out BariLife, visit their website. And tell them Nik sent ya!