Tuesday, 27 October 2009
Firefly Tonics - natural energy drinks
I am a breastfeeding mum. With a 3 & 1/2 month old son who still doesn't sleep through the night very often. Therefore I could really do with some energy drinks to help me function as a normal human being. But as they're packed full of caffeine and other nasties, that would be a really bad idea as it would filter through to my milk and make him sleep even less ! So I was really excited when I discovered Firefly tonics and their "Natural Energy" claim. Especially as there was nothing on the labels to say it was not recommended for pregnant women or breastfeeding mums. To be on the safe side, I doublechecked on the website and it does say to check with your doctor before taking anything herbal if you're pregnant or breastfeeding, but I had a good look at the list of ingredients and couldn't see anything dodgy - just to be on the safe side, I waited until just after a feed before drinking one, so that it would have a few hours to work through my system. Pierre had no strange reactions to anything - but do be careful and ask your doctor if you're concerned.
As they explain on their facebook page : "We started making our natural energy tonics back in 2003 : fed up with sugar-laden, radioactive-looking energy drinks, we asked two herbal experts to create the same effect with natural (and legal) ingredients. They're fabulous, of course. And 5 years on, you can now buy Firefly in 40 countries. And we just sold our 11 millionth bottle. Fireflies all round. Mission: Get the most out of life, naturally. " Sounds brilliant !
There are currently four Firefly tonics available : Wake up (red bottle - Peach & Green Tea with Ginseng & Damiana), Detox (orange bottle - Lemon, Lime & Ginger with Sarsaparilla & Angelica), Sharpen up (green bottle - Grapefruit & Passionfruit with Yerba Mat & Guarana) and Recharge (silver bottle - Pomegranate, Lime & Elderflower with Rosehip & Ginseng). And I got to taste all of them !
Feeling slightly dubious about some of the more exotic-sounding ingredients, I started with the green one. A tentative first sniff made me think of a less-sweet version of Lilt. And a less-tentative first sip told me that it tasted very natural like freshly-squeezed juice. It was sweet enough but not too sweet and above all, very refreshing. I went from falling asleep in front of the TV (at 8pm !!) to feeling more awake and alert - but not buzzing around the room on caffeine so I wouldn't be able to sleep later ! The other flavours were just as nice too - the orange one reminded of a fruity, less fiery version of ginger beer and the others were like interesting, expensive fresh-fruit juices (the ones you find in the chilled juice aisle, not the cheapie ones made from concentrate !).
Each 330ml bottle contains 100-120 calories, but as they say on their website, " Firefly's to help you feel your best so you can do more - and burn heaps of calories in the process !" There are no artificial sweeteners or refined sugar added, all the sweetness comes from the natural fruit juices. "Each drink has about 8 grams of fruit sugar per 100ml of drink (compared to 10 to 15 grams in a typical fruit juice or soft drink)."
I'll give the last word to the wacky people at Firefly, because they say it so well and I totally agree with them : "What's unique about Firefly ? Oh where to start... We feel there are lots of "healthy" drinks out there. And there are lots of "effective" drinks out there. But we want both.
So our Firefly tonics have 2½ grams of herbal extracts in every bottle - and they're healthy, natural and surprisingly delicious. (And obviously our drinks are unique-tasting, unique-looking and made by a unique team of unique people who wear uniqlo and dream of unicorns.)" What more could I possibly say ?!
RRP : between £1.39 and £1.95 in the UK, between €2.49 & €3.99 in Europe, and between $2.49 and $3.49 in the US
star rating : 4.5/5