Product Reviews

The Healthy Shopper Picks for Spring 2012 Review

The past few years I’ve become increasingly more conscious about my health.  Maybe it’s that I’m getting older and wanting to take better care of myself and my family or maybe it’s just a sign of the times with people trying to live more naturally, I’m not sure. I’ve been working towards living a more natural lifestyle as a result and making healthier decisions when it comes to the food I eat and the products I use in my home.

Randy Boyer and Andrea Donsky, the authors of the book, Unjunk Your Junk Food and creators of the coupon book, The Healthy Shopper, had women like me in mind when they created their Healthy Shopper Picks for Spring 2012. It’s a selection of high quality, natural and organic products that are perfect for busy moms to continue to live a healthy lifestyle.

I received a huge bag of products that I’m so excited to share with you today. I seriously was blown away at how amazing these products are. I’d tried a number of them, but there were a few in there that were new to me.

Let me introduce to The Healthy Shopper Picks for Spring 2012!

Natracare Feminine Hygiene Products

I’ve been using Natracare pads for the last six years. They are literally the only pads I can use! I suffer from vulvodynia, a chronic pain, condition and have extremely sensitive skin. These are the only pads that do not irritate me and are comfortable to wear. I always have an extra box in my house and make sure I never run out.

They were selected as one of The Healthy Shopper Picks because they are organic and chemical-free made only with 100% organic cotton and natural cellulose matrerials. No plastic. No chlorine. No yucky stuff that I don’t want touching my skin. Plus they take the honour of being the world’s first fully certified organic cotton tampon!

I was sent a box of Natracare Natural Ultra Pads, Organic Cotton Tampons and Natural Panty Liners. I’ve used the pads many times, but never tried out the tampons or pantyliners. Unfortunately I can’t wear tampons because of my chronic pain condition so I’m passing along my box to my younger sister. The pads and pantyliners both my daughter and I have used. She finds them very comfortable as well. Buy a box next time you are out and see the difference for yourself.  They are available nationwide at Loblaw’s, Whole Foods, Metro, London Drugs, Super Drug Mart as well as natural and specialty retailers. You can also buy them online at I’m never going back to my old brand.

Simply Natural Organic Pasta Sauces

Do you know how hard it is to find pasta sauce without sugar? It’s almost impossible and I had pretty much giving up on finding any until I discovered Simply Natural Organic Pasta Sauces. I’ve been following a sugar free diet for the past 6 weeks and have completely overhauled my eating habits. I was so excited when I read the ingredient label and did not see sugar listed as an ingredient! I made a delicious meal of whole wheat spaghetti with Simply Natural Organic Tomato with Roasted Garlic.  It tasted so good and just like homemade. All the ingredients were organic and were recognizable (meaning no words in there that I could not pronounce!). I have two more jars still to try- Organic Red Wine Marinara Sauce and Organic Tomato & Basil and am looking forward to seeing what they taste like.

Simply Natural Organic Pasta Sauces also come in other flavours including Tomato & Mushroom, Tomato with Roasted Peppers, Fra Diavolo (spicy) and Vodka Cream. Hungry yet? You can pick them up at most major retailers including Loblaws, Overwaitea, Costco, Thrifty’s and Metro. I need to find a store in my area that carries them because this will be the brand I’m buying {I’m just so excited that it has no sugar!!}.


I’ve also used Ecover products in the past like the Glass & Surface Cleaner. However, I hadn’t tried their dishwashing soap and laundry detergent. I’m anal about laundry. Again its my paranoia over chemicals touching my sensitive skin coming through. I have to be careful about detergents and natural products are the way to go. Ecover Zero Natural Laundry Detergent is my favourite. It’s fragrance-free and dye-free and works great in tackling our families’ pile of dirty laundry. If you prefer a scented detergent, try their newest product, Sunny Day. It has a pleasant scent that reminds me of the smell of clothes being hung on the clothes line outside on a nice day. It’s also 2.5 concentrated, HE compatible and has no dyes or chlorine.

The dishwashing liquid is also a keeper. I tried the bottle of Lemon & Aloe Vera and its smells so good!! I love how it cleans the dirty dishes and doesn’t dry out my hands. The other scents are Chamomile and Marigold and Grapefruit and Green Tea that also sound like something I would like.

The dishwashing liquid and laundry detergent are both packaged in 100% PlantPlastic. I’d never heard of PlantPlastic before, but basically it’s a new green plastic made from sugar cane. It’s 100% renewable, reusable and recyclable. Cool right?

I also received a box of Ecover Automatic Dishwasher Tablets which I have set aside to use when we get a dishwasher. It’s on our list of things to buy!

You can find Ecover products at Whole Foods, IGA Marketplace, select natural product retailers and online at Lucky Vitamins.

Kiju 100% Organic Juice

These went quickly especially with March Break being here! This was one of the products that I hadn’t tried and they were a hit with my kids and John. They are all big juice drinkers and I often cringe at the amount of sugar that is in juice. Kiju was actually Canada’s first certified organic juice box without any added sugar. To me, that’s a huge plus! Instead of added sugar, it’s the natural fruit juice flavours.

Bridget liked the drink boxes and they would also be great in school lunches. They also come in a 1L size as well that you can serve in a cup. The flavours include Mango Orange, Pomegranate Cherry, Grape Apple and Lemonade. Bridget’s favourite was the lemonade and John enjoyed the Grape Apple.

I saved the Kiju Organic Iced Tea for myself since I’m not a big juice drinker but love iced tea. The Pomegranate Green Tea was my favourite- just the right amount of sweetness and very refreshing. The Hibiscus Rooibos was also good and unlike any iced tea I’d tried before. I bet these would be satisfying on a hot summer day!

Kiju products are available at Save-On Foods, Thrifty’s, IGA in BC, Canadian Superstore (BC, AB, SK, MB), Loblaws, Zehrs, Superstore, Fortinos and Sobey’s, Metro and Atlantic Superstore.

Earth Balance

I’d heard of Earth Balance before, but never tried their line of buttery spreads and sticks, and shortening. They are products that you would use instead of butter or margerine. We often eaten eat whole wheat toast with butter and I love eating butter with bran muffins. I gave the Original Natural Butter Spread a try and was impressed. It had a great flavour and I didn’t really notice much of a difference. I plan on doing some baking this week so I’ll give it a try in my recipes.

Earth Balance products are vegan with no artificial ingredients or hydrogenated oils. They are also dairy-free, gluten-free, cholesterol-free, lactose and egg-free. You can purchase them at Loblaws, Fortinos, Whole Foods, Zehrs, Metro, Sobeys and other natural and specialty stores across Canada.

So there you have it! I encourage you to check out these products the next time you go out shopping. Also, check out the Healthy Shopper and learn more about the free coupon book and other organic products!

I was not financially compensated for this post. I received a sample of the product for review purposes. The opinions are completely my own based on my experience.

Stacie Vaughan

Stacie is the mom of two girls and lives in Ontario, Canada. She enjoys cooking/baking, photography, reading, DIY and is fueled by lots of coffee!

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