To Buy or Not to bai5?

It's not water, it's an infusion. Ohhhhh...

It’s not water, it’s an infusion. Ohhhhh…

There’s a new water on the market,” my WW leader announced in a meeting. I immediately rolled my eyes. It’s called Bai 5, which doesn’t earn it any extra points. I don’t know what a Bai is and I don’t know why I need 5 of them. But apparently it tastes like eating a peach. I think it’s going to taste like water with a vague hint of chemical peach. I’m not sure why I even want to drink a peach. Eat a peach? Eat a peach cobbler? Definitely. I’m in. Call me. Peach water? Meh.

Drinking water is not an issue for me. I like water. Water is good. But I know that some people have a hard time sucking down the recommended 8 a day. So in the interest of helping out my fellow health-seekers who are more water-challenged, I decided to try this new bai5 water. You now know my skepticism surrounding such a product – I have never been a fan of other flavored water nor will you see me carrying around a bottle of Kombucha because they all create a strong desire in me to roll my eyes – so this is a skeptic’s review. But I did try it.

First a little info.

According to their website, Bai 5 is…

“…an innovative lineup of antioxidant infusions that harnesses the goodness of coffee’s superfruit, one of nature’s most powerful antioxidants and, until now, one of its greatest secrets. Every bottle of bai delivers a thirst-quenching experience that is 100% natural, infused with one gram of free-radical fighting coffeefruit, naturally sweetened and flavored with exotic fruit juices. In addition to being delicious, bai Antioxidant Infusions are Kosher, vegan, gluten and soy-free.”

Google tells me that there isn’t actually a ton of science to back up the claim that antioxidants actually do prevent diseases like cancer, Alzheimer’s disease and rheumatoid arthritis. Nor is there a lot of evidence to suggest that antioxidants slow down the physical signs of the aging process. But then again, Google also tells me that antioxidants do all of these things and more. Thank you Google. Either way, I suppose drinking some extra antioxidants in the form of low-calorie water/juice doesn’t seem like a bad move.

Sigh. Alright. Enough of my jibber jabber. Does it taste like biting into a peach?

Well, that we may never know because my local Ralph’s (which bai5’s store locator told me is the only place in my neighborhood that carries bai5) did not have Panama Peach. So I had to settle for  Malawi Mango, mango being another sweet fruit that I can’t get enough of.

Truth time

Truth time

The verdict? Shockingly, yes! This “water” did taste a lot like a mango. In fact this “water” was much more “juice” than “water” in my opinion. Was there a slight chemically taste in the background? Yes there was. Maybe that’s the super fruit? Oh wait, no, that’s the “Organic Stevia and Erythritol” that they use to sweeten the drink. So, there are definitely artificial sweeteners involved. Natural, organic sweeteners, but artificial nonetheless.

But where this drink might have won me over was in the energizing aspect. Again, I have never bought into energy drinks – natural, Gatorade or 5 hour – but this bai5 packed a real energy punch. The whole bottle has 70mg of caffeine which is about the equivalent of 2 cups of green tea. Your grande latte from Starbucks has about 150 mg of caffeine to compare. But I gotta say, I felt way more energized in a non-jittery way after downing a bottle of Malawi Mango bai5 than I do after a latte or a cup of coffee. It was a more refreshed energy and less of a eyes-peeled-open-I’m-awake-I’m-awake-I’m-awake sort of energy.

Helpful super fruit illustration.

Helpful super fruit illustration.

So will I buy this bai5 again? Maybe. If they start carrying it at 7/11, I might occasionally swap my Diet Coke for a fruity juice/water. Will I be glued to the store locator to find the nearest bottle or ordering it from amazon.com? Probably not.

But it was much better than any flavored water crap I’ve ever tried. So there’s that. Give it a try and let me know what you think!

Other flavors purchased to try: Ipanema Pomegrante & Congo Pear

Other flavors purchased to try: Ipanema Pomegranate & Congo Pear

P.S. “Bai” is the Mandarin word for “pure.” So there’s that too.

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16 thoughts on “To Buy or Not to bai5?

  1. Haha Jen, very cute. I’m usually not the first one to buy into fads. For some reason, either I don’t find out about the new stuff first, or I’m too skeptical (or lazy?) to be the first one to try new things out. SO with this Bai thing, (which I now know about only because of your post – haha), maybe I’ll let everyone else try it first. Meantime I’ll stick to my diet Snapple (and diet coke).

  2. i got the peach at gelsons. it was in the refrigerated section with several other flavors. i LOVED it! i’m looking forward to trying the other flavors, but it is $2.99 per bottle at both gelsons and pavilions. so i bought a 12 pack red variety from amazon. with free delivery, it comes out to $2.35 per bottle. btw, hungrygirl.com also recommended it…in particular the coconut, which i couldn’t find at either store.

    • I’m not sure if you have a Costco near you, but that’s how I discovered it. There was a demo and I got to try 11 different flavors — all very yummy! I was able to purchase a set of 12 bottles (any combo of flavors) for $18.99 (about $1.58 per bottle).

  3. I would buy it again. My husband and I tasted a few flavors Ipanema Pomegranate a little sour, Costa Rica Clementine, a really good orange taste, Brasilia Blueberry slight sweet blueberry taste. They had a lot of flavor and quenched my thirst. I also liked the Natural sweetener and 5 calories. We bought it at Costco. I hope they continue to carry it.

  4. My university cafeteria carries Bai5 and I’m hooked. It’s rather pricey, but I have a meal plan that I have to use up by the end of the semester, so it’s alright. The coconut is absolutely amazing, as well as the peach and the pear. I have yet to try dragonfruit and pomegranite, but I have yet to meet a Bai5 that I haven’t liked, so I can’t wait!

  5. I buy my packs at Wegmans, didn’t know they had them at Costco. So far I have had the Coconut, Dragonfruit, and Mago…all three are delicious. I am not into water fads either such as Vitamin Water but I like that these have antioxidants and the 35 mg of caffeine. Im trying to avoid coffee and get my caffeine intake the healthy way. So this is a perk and I def feel the energy.

  6. There is a similar product out there called Kona Red which is mostly avalable now only in Hawaii and CA but which will soon be available in more stores and across the country. Kona Red is only made from the outer part of the coffee berry and does not have any other flavors added to it yet. It is very high in anti-oxidants – 72 times more than Pomegranate, 22 times more than Cranberries and 24 times more than Blueberries.

  7. husband is going though Chemo and this is the only one he can drink that doesn’t leave a aftertaste in his mouth… it has my vote!

  8. I am trying the Congo Pear as I’m reading these posts. Not bad, but I also enjoy water – just water. I want to replace my Mt. Dew addiction with SOMETHING. We’ll see if this is the ticket. The pear flavor is surprisingly refreshing. I also hate vitamin waters… I feel like someone is trying to trick me into it tasting good and it doesn’t.

  9. I love this stuff. I recently gave up diet soda (and soda in general), and I need another way to get the caffeine so that my caffeine withdrawal is not so wicked (and because I don’t like coffee in the afternoon – I prefer a cold beverage). I already have a love affair going with Stevia … so this is at the tippy top of my life faves list right now. I also love to mix these in with veggies and fruits and ice in my Vitamix and make smoothies and juices with it. The coconut flavor is totally getting mixed into something alcoholic soon, too. I’m #teambai5

  10. I also bought mine at Costco and am really liking it. My understanding is Costco is letting them do this promotion to make sure it is a seller. After the promotion, I hope the price doesn’t go up. Of course, I got this product for a great price at Costco and while I was there spent another $150 on things I really didn’t need…I do love Costco, though.

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