• Guru Lite


Food criticism is a strange business. The day we ran a column about Guru energy drink that raised concerns about the potential health risks — especially for adverse reactions with common remedies such as aspirin — a Guru executive promptly e-mailed to complain it wasn’t fair. Judge for yourself here. Then he sent a case of the beverage and sister product Guru Lite to the office.

Guru Lite can’t be categorized as an energy drink since it doesn’t have the minimum caloric content — sugar — required by federal regulations to be called one. Instead, it’s sweetened with sucralose, also known by the trade name Splenda, which is about 600 times sweeter than sugar. Early U.S. tests in rats indicated toxicity concerns such as potential to compromise the immune system, but federal authorities there ultimately decided sucralose was safe at recommended consumption levels.

Guru and Guru Lite both have the same 1629 mg of “botanicals” — medicinal herbs such as guarana (whose active compound is caffeine) and ginkgo biloba (which dilates blood vessels). While the company says Guru Lite is “as powerful and effective” as the regular drink, I felt no such effects.

As for claims of having the same “great taste”... not even close. I dislike sucralose sweetened drinks because, to me, they taste like plastic. Guru Lite tastes like a blend of bitter medicine sweetened with plastic — unlike Guru, which tastes like grapefruit juice. I wouldn’t buy either one, but forced to make a choice, I’d pick regular Guru.

Where To Buy: Wholefoods Market, Petro-Canada, International News, Gateway News stands, A&P Dominion, Barn Markets, S&H Health Foods, Ultramarts, Nutrition House, Noah’s, The Big Carrot, Premier Fitness Centers.

Price: $2.29 for 250 ml can.

Try?/Buy Again: Ummm (yuck) ... no.


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