Nuun Drink Tabs

Manufacturer Description

Nuun New Flavor Mixed Fruit 4-Pack: The kid in us has been begging for these flavors for years. Uncomplicated, classic, delicious flavors without the sugars that always made us crash a few minutes later. These retro favorites will keep you hydrated on the road for hours, but make sure you stay close enough to hear mom yell for dinner!

Features

  • Zero sugar
  • Important electrolytes
  • Under 8 calories
  • Easy to use
  • Tabs quickly dissolve in your own water bottle
  • Easy to take with you
  • Absorbs quickly
  • The following is the nutritional information for a serving of Nuun based on one tablet dissolved in 16oz (500ml) of water. There are less than 8 calories per Nuun tab.
    • Active Ingredients
      • Sodium (carbonates) – 360 mg
      • Potassium (bicarbonate) – 100 mg
      • Calcium (carbonate) – 12.5 mg
      • Magnesium (sulfate) – 25 mg
      • Vitamin C – 37.5 mg
      • Vitamin B2 – 500 mcg
    • Other Ingredients: citric acid, sorbitol, sodium carbonate, natural colors flavors, sodium bicarbonate, potassium bicarbonate, polyethylene glycol, magnesium sulfate, sodium benzoate, calcium carbonate, acesulfame potassium, riboflavin-5-phosphate.
    • **Lemon Tea and Kona Cola each contain 20mg of caffeine per 8 oz. serving (40mg per tablet). That’s about a third of the caffeine found in your average cup of drip coffee.**
  • 11 flavors available – Lemon-Lime, Tri-Berry, Citrus Fruit, Orange, Kona Cola, Banana, Lemon Tea, Fruit Punch, Strawberry Lemonade, Grape, Tropical
  • Retail – $24 per 4 Tube Pack (48 total tabs)

YMMV Review

I have been using Nuun Drink Tabs off and on for roughly 5 years. I was really excited to see Nuun add some new flavors this year bringing the count up to 11 total flavors.

Design ★★★½☆

It is really tough to judge the “design” of drink tabs so I will touch on the purpose more than anything. Nuun sells their drink tabs in boxes that include 4 tubes or individual tubes themselves. Each recyclable tube contains 12 drink tabs and each drink tab makes 1/2 liter (16 oz).  This means that one box can make 24 liters (768 oz) of Nuun. Each tab is tiny and has a line down the middle so they can be broken in half. Nuun tabs take about 2 minutes to completely dissolve.

Nuun Recyclable Tube

Nuun Drink Tabs have zero sugar and less than 8 calories. They have sodium, potassium, calcium, and magnesium for replenishing electrolytes during a workout. Nuun is completely portable and able to be mixed at the athletes preferred taste. Most importantly Nuun absorbs quickly into your system.

Performance ★★★½☆

I really like Nuun. The tabs are convenient and I like the fact that I can mix flavors or make them at my preferred taste. I tend to like my drinks a bit stronger and do most of my 20 oz bottle with 1 ½ tabs. Since Nuun has scored the tabs they are relatively easy to break in half when you need to. Speaking of breaking, I did use these in the Cle-Elum Ridge 50k Ultramarathon and when the tube was less than half full the tabs would shake while I ran and pulverized themselves into a powder. Other than this instance I have not had any issues with the tabs breaking up but I would suggest putting them in a plastic baggie instead of the tube over the course of a long jarring run.

I am not going to comment much on the flavors as everyone will have different tastes on what they like and dislike. I am excited for all the new flavors than Nuun introduced this year as some of these are high on my list now. I now have tired all of the flavors and only 1 (tropical) is tough for me to consistently use. I will say that Nuun does tend to have a slight bit of carbonation (effervescence) to it which may turn off some people. It does not bother me but my wife does not like it. The other issue that I have is that on recently made bottles of Nuun the shaking during a run or ride can sometimes cause leaking out of the bottle. The built up pressure from the effervescent tab lasts a good time after it all dissolves causing it to leak. If anyone has any good suggestions other than making the bottle a couple hours before hand, please let me know in the comment section. Fortunately Nuun does not leave that sticky mess on the bottles when it does leak as there is no sugar so this is less of an issue as it is with other nutrition.

Single Tab

Finally since Nuun contains less than 8 calories per tab it allows the user to vary their diet to make of for the calories needed during a workout or race. I like this as I can have Nuun before or after to increase electrolytes and not have to worry about excess calories. This is a great feature allowing for a more customized nutrition plan.

Overall ★★★½☆

There are some drawbacks that I mentioned above but as a whole they make a great product. They really are ideal for athletes looking to be able to customize their food plan or for those looking to cut back on calories. Nuun is also very portable, allowing you to easily carry many drink tabs in a small tube as long as you have water along the way to fill up. One last props to Nuun is for their involvement in sponsoring racers and races, it is good to see companies active in the athletic community. If you choose to make Nuun at the recommended strength it ends up costing around 50 cents per 16 oz bottle which is a bit cheaper than the average nutritional drink. I myself will continue to use Nuun but would like to figure out how to avoid the occasional leaking. As always, your mileage may vary.

Pros

  • Portable
  • About 50 cents per 16 oz
  • Full Electrolyte profile
  • Able to adjust strength of flavor
  • Less than 8 calories per tab
  • 10+ flavors

Cons

  • Can break apart if shaken in mostly empty tube
  • Slightly carbonated (effervescent)
  • Newly made bottles tend to leak a bit on runs and rides

Adventures

About the author

I am an avid runner, cyclist, swimmer, hiker, climber, skier and many other activities that would make this list too long. I started Your Mileage May Vary Reviews in Early 2011 to combine two of my passions: sports and gear.

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