Review: Zeal Wellness Formula Drink

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A friend of mine reached out to me recently about a product that she has incorporated into her life- the Zeal Wellness Formula. She asked if I’d be interested in trying some samples and reviewing them here.

Concentrated and powdered, Zeal Wellness Formula is a nutritional formula that can be mixed with water or juice. You can also blend it into a smoothie, if that’s more your style. The formula contains antioxidants, amino acids, herbs, and nutrients from whole food concentrates, as well as complex carbohydrates and polysaccharides to support your immune system.

There are 48 calories in a serving, and each serving includes 100 percent or more daily value of certain vitamins like A, C, and B12. It also contains different percentages of numerous other vitamins and minerals. The formula is sweetened with Stevia, and you can buy it both with or without guarana for extra energy.

Take a look at the Zeal Wellness Nutrition Facts for more info.

So what did I think?

I received a sample pack of 6 servings of Zeal¬†in both Wild Berry and the Bold Grape flavors. The powder came inside little single-serving, recyclable bottles, and I just added the water. It’s also available in a big¬†canister; just scoop out the serving you need for the day.

The grape flavor was tolerable, but I had to swig it down pretty quickly. Not my favorite. I actually liked the wild berry flavor, so I took my time drinking those bottles. The berry ones were more of a treat for me.

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I did feel energized after drinking these, thanks to the guarana, so I forewent my morning coffee on the days I tried Zeal. It was nice to not have a coffee crash around lunch time!

As far as feeling a difference in my body, I didn’t notice anything, but perhaps I would over a longer period of time. However, I already have a very nutritious, clean diet and feed my body well, so I’m not sure Zeal would ever make a noticeable difference. BUT I do like to take a multi-vitamin, just to make sure I’m always getting the right nutrients. I hate swallowing pills…can’t stand it. So the Zeal Wellness Formula really appeals to me, because of that. I also like that I can buy a formula with¬†guarana and basically kill two birds with one stone: my morning coffee and my daily vitamin. It’s definitely cheaper than my favorite Starbucks latte. =D

Zeal is sold through a multi-level marketing style company, like Mary Kay, Thirty-One, and Stella & Dot. You can buy through a consultant, or even become one yourself.

The most affordable way to purchase Zeal is by signing up to be a preferred customer. A canister (30-day supply) will cost you $59.95, about $2 a serving. There’s a 30-day guarantee on the wellness canister, if you’re a first-time customer. If for any reason, you’re unsatisfied, you will have to ship back the unused portion of your canister, but your purchase price will be refunded.

To look into purchasing Zeal Wellness, or one of their other health products, visit 8great.zealforlife.com.

Email Debbie at sunnyfly10 at gmail.com for more info on Zeal. Right now you can purchase a sample pack like mine for $15! Ask Debbie for the details.

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Fitness Friday: 2/28/14

Another week is over, and it’s that time again: Fitness Friday!

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Click ^this button to join the Fitness Friday linky hosted at We Have It All.

Activity:

I had a great run last Sunday night. It was the last day of warmer temps (50/60s), so a friend and I headed down to the beach and ran on the sidewalk (with Baby J in the stroller, of course) for just under 6 miles. For half the distance, we interchanged jogs with sprints. On the way back, my friend wasn’t feeling well, and my right foot was hurting me, so we walked a little bit and jogged when we felt like it. And that leads me to my foot.

It’s been hurting me on and off for a few weeks, but hasn’t really been problematic until Monday morning. When I got up on Monday, it was pretty sore. I did a legs workout, and found that lunges really hurt my foot as well, whenever my toes bend. So I decided to take at least two weeks off from running (and definitely sprints), until my foot feels better. I’d rather take time off now, and still be able to run the half marathon, then wait, have my foot get really bad, and not be able to run it. The disappointing factor is of course I won’t do as well on the half, since I’m not training the whole time.

It’s blurry, but N snapped a photo of me and Baby J jogging last Sunday night.

I’ve been concerned about getting cardio in without being able to run or walk for long distances. Next week, I’m going to try some swimming. My foot did okay this week with 20 minutes of Zumba and 20 minutes on the elliptical, so at least short periods are fine. Well, I did feel a little pain later on after Zumba, but the elliptical definitely was not a problem.

Unfortunately that’s still not enough cardio for one week. I really aim to do 4 days of cardio a week and prefer to do at least 40 minutes at a time. I guess I could count last Sunday as a cardio day, but I usually start my workout weeks on Monday. I really should get in two more sessions of some cardio today, Saturday, or this coming Sunday. If not, I’ll be bummed, but I’ll also keep in mind that I need my foot to get better.

But the bum foot also means that I will not meet my Winter Miles Challenge for the week, and it’s the last week too!

Weightlifting/strength training went much better this week! I was consistent, and I concentrated on lifting heavier weights. I’m very weak, so the weights weren’t that heavy =D but I’ll get there.

Diet:

Fortunately, I’ve had my sugar cravings under control this week. Oh, and I lowered the number of calories I’ve been eating, since I’m doing less cardio.¬†I had one cheat day -Tuesday night- when I attended a baby shower. Otherwise, I’ve been eating lots of fruits and veggies, whole grains, and trying to get enough protein. I’ve been looking into protein powders and shakes, because it’s been really difficult for me to get extra protein in my diet, and I need it as I’m trying to build muscle.

I’m curious about Garden of Life’s Raw Protein. If you’ve used it, I’d love to hear your thoughts on it.

I have been eating a little too much fat. Granted, I’ve been eating a lot of the “healthier” fats: avocado, natural peanut butter, egg yolks, nuts, coconut oil, etc., but it’s still a bit much, I think.

Stats:

I’m supposed to update these in a week, but I do not feel ready! I don’t feel that I’ve changed much at all in the last month. Well, maybe my arms look a little more muscular…we’ll see. I’ll try to get a photo this time too.

Goals for Next Week:

Continue to lift regularly and do more cardio, in spite of the foot. Keep my diet healthy, even though I’ll be out of town and away from my kitchen.

Click ^this button to join the Fitness Friday linky at JillConyers.com!

Fitspiration/Workouts I’m loving:

I’ve been watching a ton of YouTube videos this week from Brenda Leigh Turner at LeanSecrets.com. She has some awesome advice for losing weight and gaining muscle. I don’t agree with everything she says (I mean, she says people should give up coffee…say what?!), but overall her advice seems very sound. Many of her workouts and exercises can be done at home, which is a huge plus for a stay-at-home-mom like me.

Also, it’s refreshing to watch her, because she’s not your typical modelesque¬†fitness guru. Although she’s very pretty and very fit, she has a shorter, sturdier frame than Jillian Michaels, Amanda Bisk, Tracy Anderson, and other well-knowns. All body shapes can be fit and healthy.

Here’s one of my favorite Brenda Leigh Turner videos, “Do This, Not That & Burn More Fat.” She breaks it down really well and shows some great exercises:

How was your week? Did you meet your goals? Have anything exciting planned for this weekend?
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Steak and Brussels Sprouts Stir Fry #hellofreshpics

Subscription boxes are a popular service right now, and I know they exist for all kinds of products- cat toys, organic samples, underwear, makeup, and more. But I was surprised to hear about Hello Fresh, a food subscription service! Through the Mosaic Reviews team (who, alas, are closing their doors soon), I received one complimentary Hello Fresh box, delivered to my door.

The classic box contained recipe cards and ingredients for three meals (two servings per meal). The meals were: steak and brussels sprouts stir-fry, chicken quinoa stew, and chile dusted shrimp with corn relish. Since the steak and Brussels sprouts were my favorite of the three (soooooo good), I’m sharing the recipe below.

Steak and Brussels Sprouts Stir-Fry

 Ingredients:

  • Sirloin strips- 8 ounces, uncooked
  • Basmati rice- 1 cup, uncooked
  • Carrot- 1 large (about 7″ long)
  • Garlic cloves- 2
  • Ginger- 1 thumb (about 5 or 6 tablespoons)
  • Jalape√Īo- 1
  • Scallions- 2
  • Soy sauce- 2 tablespoons
  • White wine vinegar- 2 tablespoons
  • Vegetable oil- 2 tablespoons *Not included in Hello Fresh box

Directions:

Step 1- Quarter the Brussels sprouts.¬†Peel the carrot and slice diagonally.¬†Slice the scallions. Separate the white from green parts.¬†Thinly slice the jalape√Īo.¬†Mince the garlic and ginger.

Steak and Brussels sprouts stir fry from Hello Fresh. Get the recipe on My Life: A Work in Progress

Step 2- Combine the soy sauce and vinegar in a small bowl, then set aside.

Step 3- Bring 1 1/2 cups of water and rice with a pinch of salt to a boil. Reduce heat, cover, and cook for 20 minutes, or until tender.

Step 4- Heat a tablespoon of oil over medium high heat.¬†Saute Brussels sprouts, turning occasionally, until golden brown and crisp tender, about four minutes. (I cooked mine for longer…just look for that golden brown color.)¬†Move Brussels sprouts to a small bowl.
Step 5-¬†Add another tablespoon of oil to the pan, season the steak with salt, and cook steak strips in a single layer.¬†Cook approximately three minutes, until browned and cooked almost all the way through. (Like the Brussels sprouts, I cooked a little longer…just to make sure they were done, since I was giving some to Baby J.)¬†Move steak to bowl with Brussels sprouts.

Step 6-¬†Add ginger, scallion whites, and garlic to the pan.¬†Cook until fragrant, about one minute.¬†Add carrots and jalape√Īo.¬†Cook an additional three minutes, until carrots are softened.

Step 7- Add steak, Brussels, and soy & vinegar mixture to the pan. Continue cooking a few minutes until the sauce is thickened.

Step 8- Fluff rice with a fork and serve steak and vegetable mixture over a mound. Garnish with scallion greens.

Steak and Brussels sprouts stir fry from Hello Fresh. Get the recipe on My Life: A Work in Progress

It seems like a lot of steps, but the preparation and cooking actually went quite quickly. It’s just really broken down simply for anyone to follow!

The combination of the steak and Brussels sprouts was really nice. The sprouts weren’t bitter at all. I usually cook with brown rice, but I love the texture of Basmati rice, so this recipe did not disappoint. A nice compromise would be brown Basmati rice (not as fluffy as the white, IMO, but close!). The steak was absolutely delicious- tender and flavorful. I plan to recreate this recipe, and when I do, I’ll make sure to purchase a good-quality sirloin, because I think that really makes the dish.

I also thought the portions were huge. The photo above is a bowl for one person!

About Hello Fresh

I chose the classic Hello Fresh box, but there’s also a veggie box. You can choose a box for either two people or four, and also make meal substitutions when checking out online. It’s a flexible subscription service, meaning you can place your box on hold for however long you want. Check out the FAQ page on their site for specific details.

My box arrived mid-morning on the day it was scheduled. The packing inside the box kept the ingredients cool, including the meat. Everything was pre-measured and packaged together, so it was impossible to mix up meals. All the veggies looked as fresh as if I’d bought them from the grocery store that day.

Veggies for the steak and Brussels sprouts dish

As I mentioned, the steak/Brussels sprouts meal was my favorite, and I plan to make it again, exactly as written. The chicken quinoa stew and shrimp/corn relish dishes were also good, but I’ll make some changes next time.¬†I cook with quinoa at least twice a week, and I enjoy the chewy, nutty flavor and texture. I felt that putting the quinoa in a stew negated the nice texture, almost like wasting the quinoa. When I recreate this recipe, I’ll leave the quinoa out and probably use some lentils in the stew instead.¬†The shrimp with corn relish dish was also good, but I always feel like a meal’s incomplete without some sort of starch, so I added brown rice. The addition of rice also stretched the meal further, making more portions.

Hello Fresh food subscription. Find out more on My Life: A Work in Progress

So will I be continuing my Hello Fresh subscription? Probably not at this time, but I’m torn about it. I’m still signed up for the subscription service, but I have deliveries placed on hold until I make up my mind. I was very happy with the quality of the food, the portions, and the recipes. It just doesn’t makes sense for us, financially. I try to spend around $2-4 per person on a meal, and Hello Fresh averages out to $11.50 a meal, per person. I do think there’s at least an extra serving for every meal, but that would still make it about $7.66 a meal, per person. However, take a look at the $20 off coupon code at the bottom of this post. Using a code like this one would definitely make at least trying out a box affordable!

If you have the food budget for it or disposable income, then I would recommend giving Hello Fresh a try. It’s nice that you can try new recipes, and maybe use ingredients that you wouldn’t normally. You can also do so, without buying a bunch of expensive spices that you may never use again. I could see Hello Fresh being indispensable to a busy, young professional or a newly-married couple. When I was working full-time for the Army Reserve and living out of a hotel, a Hello Fresh subscription would’ve been fantastic (and definitely healthier than eating out).¬†It is something I’m going to keep in mind for when we have another child, because it’s occurred to me this would be awesome to have delivered a couple of times that first month after giving birth!

You can check this service out at HelloFresh.com. Use code¬†UQRX9L to receive $20 off your first box! And if you use it, I’ll get $20 off my next box too. Sign up, and you get your own referral code to share too.

To see what other Mosaic reviewers had to say, click HERE.

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