Celebrate ENS Grape

On December 27, 2009, in Minerals, Reviews, Vitamins, by Andrea

This is the 2nd of my reviews of the Celebrate ENS multivitamin / calcium drink mix.  I reviewed their Wild Cherry mix last night.

ENS Grape Drink Mix

Created for surgical weight loss patients, our Celebrate ENS (Essential Nutrient System) provides a full compliment of vitamins and minerals, plus 500 mg of calcium in each stick pack. Our integrated formula provides maximum solubility and ensures that the vitamins and minerals are readily bioavailable. This product is the best option for patients immediately following surgery.

* The vitamin and mineral content of each pack is equal to taking one chewable multivitamin plus 500 mg of calcium.
* The calcium that we have chosen is calcium lactate-gluconate, which is a highly absorbable form of calcium with excellent solubility properties.
* Due to the nature of the formulation, this product is appropriate for any surgical weight loss procedure. As with any of our other delivery systems, you may need additional supplementation based on surgery type.
* It is recommended to be blended with 8-16 oz of water, shaken, and consumed but can be mixed with as much or as little water as you want.
* Each pack also contains 4 g of soluble fiber, added electrolytes and a 500 mg antioxidant blend made with natural berries including acai berry, raspberry, blueberry, goji berry, strawberry and cranberry.
* Like our other products, taste is important and this has a delicious cherry flavor with just the right mix of sweet and tart.

Who would benefit from this product?
1. Early post-operative patients – Since this may be diluted to taste, there are virtually no issues with taste aversion. If you prefer a stronger flavor, use less water or if you prefer a lighter flavor, use more water.
2. Athletes – If you are a surgery patient turned athlete, this can help to flavor that boring water that you need to drink. Water is critical and taking your vitamins and calcium while hydrating makes it easier.
3. Anyone looking for a convenient alternative to pills or chewables.

Mixed

I mixed the Wild Cherry with 12oz of water and found it to be too watery for my liking, so tonight I only used 8oz.  I have to say I like the flavoring much better.  It could be because the grape is a better flavoring, or because it was just more concentrated, but it’s much more to my liking this way.  (Note to self:  Start with less liquids for future endeavors and add more if needed!)  There is still quite a minerally smell to the drink and a taste of mineral when I take a swig of it, but it’s covered up quite a bit more with the grape flavoring.  I’m guessing the Wild Cherry would have covered the mineral taste better if I had used less water, but no way to tell as of now — I’d have to have another pack to test the theory.

Now, even with the improved flavoring, it’s still minerally to me — and that’s the reason why I got away from chewable vites in the first place.  That flavor just really kills me for some reason.  I know we NEED that horrible flavor — intellectually I know why it’s there and I know it’s really hard to cover well without tons of artificial flavors and sugars..  but it still gets me every time.  It leaves an aftertaste that I can’t wait to get rid of — enough that I take a swig of this, then a sip of something else to get the flavor out of my mouth — making it last even longer.

So if I were to have purchased a 90 day supply of this, and to have found myself in this boat, I would go out and buy SF Kool-Aid and learn to mix THAT in with this to help make it more palatable and get it down as quickly as possible and be happy with the stats.

As I said last night — if you can get past the taste, it has pretty decent stats — especially for a non pill-form vitamin (which has the whole palatibility issue — obviously..):

ENS Supplement Stats

So Andrea’s suggestion?  Ask Celebrate for a sample, see if you like the product, and see if you want to give it a try.  I think it’s a bit expensive, but it does count as one multivite and a calcium dose — so two tubes gives you 2 multivites and 2 calcium doses.. that’s not too horrible of a deal for adding to water you should be drinking anyway.

Available at Celebrate for the following prices:

7 days (14 doses) $16.95
30 days (60 doses) $$49.95
90 days (180 doses)  $119.95

Celebrate ENS Wild Cherry

On December 26, 2009, in Minerals, Reviews, Vitamins, by Andrea

To help start the new year off right, I’m trying to clear the backlog of reviews that I have promised myself I will do.  I’m starting with some of the Celebrate samples that I got in the mail last week when I mentioned to Celebrate on Twitter that I’ve not tried their new ENS line of product.

ENS Wild Cherry

Created for surgical weight loss patients, our Celebrate ENS (Essential Nutrient System) provides a full compliment of vitamins and minerals, plus 500 mg of calcium in each stick pack. Our integrated formula provides maximum solubility and ensures that the vitamins and minerals are readily bioavailable. This product is the best option for patients immediately following surgery.

* The vitamin and mineral content of each pack is equal to taking one chewable multivitamin plus 500 mg of calcium.
* The calcium that we have chosen is calcium lactate-gluconate, which is a highly absorbable form of calcium with excellent solubility properties.
* Due to the nature of the formulation, this product is appropriate for any surgical weight loss procedure. As with any of our other delivery systems, you may need additional supplementation based on surgery type.
* It is recommended to be blended with 8-16 oz of water, shaken, and consumed but can be mixed with as much or as little water as you want.
* Each pack also contains 4 g of soluble fiber, added electrolytes and a 500 mg antioxidant blend made with natural berries including acai berry, raspberry, blueberry, goji berry, strawberry and cranberry.
* Like our other products, taste is important and this has a delicious cherry flavor with just the right mix of sweet and tart.

Who would benefit from this product?
1. Early post-operative patients – Since this may be diluted to taste, there are virtually no issues with taste aversion. If you prefer a stronger flavor, use less water or if you prefer a lighter flavor, use more water.
2. Athletes – If you are a surgery patient turned athlete, this can help to flavor that boring water that you need to drink. Water is critical and taking your vitamins and calcium while hydrating makes it easier.
3. Anyone looking for a convenient alternative to pills or chewables.

So the instructions said to mix this with 8-16 oz of water, or dilute to lessen the taste.  I decided to try 12oz without having any clue how much or how little I’d like this.

ENS Wild Cherry -- Mixed

First impression — 12oz is a bit watery.  When I do the Grape review, I’ll be using 8oz of water instead.

The sniff test makes it smell a bit like minerally kool-aid.  It’s similar to the smell of opening a Flintstones bottle and taking a deep whiff.  That minerally smell that tells you that this is not just something good to drink, but an actual vitamin-thing.

Taste-wise — yeah, it’s definately a bit watery, but it’s not horrible.  It’s that mineral taste that gets to me, though, and would almost make me want me to thin it out a bit more to help get that taste thinned out a bit more.  This taste is what got me off chewables in the first place — vitamins are important, but hiding the taste of the important stuff is really really hard to do and I don’t think I could handle this drink on a regular basis.

If you can get past the mineraly taste, the stats are pretty good:

ENS Supplement Facts

500mgs of bioavailable calcium at the same time as a multivitamin — it helps those of us struggling to get all of our doses in..  to get 1500mgs of calcium and 2 multivites, you’d just need two of these tubes and one additional calcium dose, which is very do-able in most peoples’ schedules.

So my suggestion is to get a sample pack from Celebrate and try it out.  If it works for you, then consider it as a source for your multivite and calcium..

Runs $119.95 for a 90 day supply (180 doses total) at Celebrate.com

Flintstones and Tums aren’t enough postop.

Some of us know this already — but heya! there’s a study that gives some credence to what some of us have been saying.  There was an article published in The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, the Official Journal of the American Society for Clinical Nutrition, Inc.

Nutritional deficiencies after Roux-en-Y gastric bypass for morbid obesity often cannot be prevented by standard multivitamin supplementation, by Christoph Gasteyger, Michel Suter, Rolf C Gaillard, and Vittorio Giusti.  (Article can be read here.)

Before you ask, the numbers are based off of an unknown, regular multivitamin.  The studies are not based off of a bariatric multivitamin, or using ASMBS recommendations.  However, this just proves why we should heed those recommendations.  Lots of numbers ahead – scary numbers, actually.


The study, in the end, included 137 morbidly obese patients (110 women and 27 men) — these were the ones who maintained the lab requirements, the supplementation requirements, the doctor visits, etc.  Initially, there were 348 patients in the study, but only about 33% complied with the postoperative care requirements, which, in of itself, is a sobering statistic.

Lab testing was done at 3, 6, 12, 18, and 24 months postoperatively.

This, folks, is where it gets really scary.

  • 3 months postop, 34% required at least one additional supplement to the multivite
  • 6 months postop, 59% required at least one additional supplement
  • 12 months postop, 86% required at least one additional supplement
  • 18 months postop, 93% required at least one additional supplement
  • 24 months postop, 98% required at least one additional supplement to the multivite
  • After 2 years, 2.2% took 0 additional supplements
  • 18.3% took 1 additional supplement
  • 19.7% took 2 additional supplements
  • 22.6% took 3 additional supplements
  • 27.7% took 4 additional supplements to the multivite
  • 6.6% took 5 additional supplements
  • 2.9% took 6 additional supplements
  • B12 was the most often supplemented — 10% were taking it at 3 months and 80% were taking it at 2 years
  • Iron was next — 15% at 3 months, and 60% at 2 years
  • Calcium +D — 17% at 3 months, 60% at 2 years
  • Folic Acid — 7% at 3 months, 45% at 2 years
  • B1 — 1% at 3 months, 4% at 2 years
  • B6 — 1% at 3 months, 13% at 2 years
  • Magnesium — 1% at 3 months, 13% at 2 years
  • Zinc — 1% at 3 months, 12% at 2 years

So what does all of this tell us?  Quite a bit.  First off..  33% of the people included in this study were able to pop a single pill, keep up with doctor appointments, get blood draws, add supplements as needed?  Only 33% could comply for a measly two years?  They got their insides sliced and diced, knowing this was going to be for life, knowing they would need vitamins for life, and they couldn’t maintain a simple protocol for a measly two years?  This frightens the heck out of me more than the numbers above do.  I mean.. what happens at year three?  Or, if they are still kicking, year ten?

But while we’re looking at the numbers, and let’s keep in mind that these are only for two years — and let’s not think about those of us kicking around the five year mark — that 98% of those in the study were at least on one additional supplement to a multivite.  That tells us that we need much, much more than the average bear.  So maybe, perhaps, the ASMBS has it right with their recommendations for doubling the multivite, adding some calcium, some iron, some b12, etc.?  That Flintstones and Tums aren’t going to cut it for long.

Yes, sobering statistics to be certain.

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