Wednesday, April 11, 2012

FMF Power Hydration + Recovery: Citrus Lemonade and Fruit Punch (Big Lots)


Good drink, and great value at Big Lots.

I was browsing the beverage aisle in my local Big Lots store (my favorite aisle in the entire store), when I came across this little guy.  I used to be a huge energy drink connoisseur back in the day, but a combination of heart palpitations and warnings from others about how bad they are for your long-term health made me kick the habit well over a year ago.  Needless to say, I no longer drink them daily like I used to, but I don’t see any problems with enjoying them occasionally (as in, once a month, if even that often), especially when you can find a bottle for well under $1.  And especially when you have to be at work at 6 a.m. and are nowhere close to being a morning person.  While I’ve been putting up with it for five years now, there’s no doubt that there are some mornings where waking up is next to impossible to do, so a little jump start is needed.

Big Lots offers two flavors: Citrus Lemonade and Fruit Punch, which a quick internet search has confirmed are the only two flavors that they currently make.  Though I originally was only going to try one, I figured the price tag was low enough that I might as well get one of each to test them out.  Notes follow.

The Citrus Lemonade is light and refreshingly crisp.  The product description says that it’s lightly carbonated, but the carbonation was a little stronger than I expected (for an example of truly light carbonation, I went back to the good ol’ days of All Sport, back before it succumbed to what I’m assuming was all the negative talk that carbonated beverages dehydrated you, rather than the opposite; bad news for what was supposed to be a refreshing sports drink).  This isn’t a knock at all:  I actually found the extra bit of fizz to be rather enjoyable.

As for the flavor, the first second or two reminded me of a Sprite, but then came a flood of richer citrus flavor.  It still has that typical taste quality found in just about all energy drinks (that slight metallic flavor), but there is a solid balance between the citrus and lemonade that makes it pretty refreshing.  I will say that it’s rather sweet.  I happen to enjoy my beverages on the sweet side, but where there’s sweet, there’s sugar, and FMF has quite a bit:  25 grams per serving, with each can holding two servings.  So you’re looking at 50 grams of sugar per bottle, or 3.12 g/oz.  This is actually on the lower end compared to most name brand energy drinks, but it’s still really high, so those watching their sweet tooth might want to stay away.

However, in the world of energy drinks, obviously taste is secondary to--well--actual energy.  On those grounds, I am pleased to say it succeeds really well.  I only downed half the bottle, and got a noticeable increase in energy, signified by some rather random adrenaline bursts.  If I was doing something besides walking around at work, I probably could have put it to better use, but the drink did its job.  As a side note, I don’t drink coffee, and generally have limited caffeine intake, so that no doubt helped to heighten the drink’s effects within a quicker time frame. 

While very similar to the Citrus Lemonade in terms of ingredients and nutrition value, the flavor of the fruit punch reminds me a lot of cough syrup.  Even then, the flavor is more akin to cherry, with a syrupy, artificial aftertaste.  Being a huge fan of fruit punch, this was a huge disappointment for me, as this was the flavor I was most excited to try. 

Overall: Citrus Lemonade: 7.5/10.  Fruit Punch: 6.5/10.  I was pretty impressed with the FMF Power energy drinks, though most of it probably comes down to value.  I’ve always looked for such drinks without taurine and guarana (as I‘ve heard negative things about taking these ingredients in high quantities), but with a high level of B vitamins, and this is actually the first one I’ve found.  The fact that it works so well is just another positive.  As I understand, these bottles retail for around $2.49 each, so the fact they’re currently at Big Lots for just $.60 a bottle (in Ohio; prices subject to vary from location to location) make them a bonafide steal.  The Citrus Lemonade was by far the better flavor, with a strong fruity taste that was refreshing and not too artificial.  The fruit punch, on the other hand, was more reminiscent of cherry cough syrup, with a similar aftertaste.  Both have quite a bit of sugar (though a bit less, on average, than most of the identifiable major brands), but did provide a pretty long-lasting kick of energy.  Definitely worth the Big Lots asking price, though with so many cheaper options out there, I would never pay regular retail for one.

2 comments:

  1. which big lots stores in south carolina carry fmf energy drinks. I can,t seem to locate any.

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  2. I'm not sure, as I live in Columbus, OH. However, as with a lot of Big Lots stock, I think it was one of those "closeout" deals, because I haven't seen it there since. I know they are still available on Amazon, but with tax and shipping it looks like it's close to $5 a bottle.

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