Wednesday, June 27, 2012

SUGU Snacks: All-Natural Breakfast Bars & Cookies

Registered Nurse Susan M. Gugliuzza knows how challenging it can be to find snacks that don't just taste good, but are healthy and filling too. That's why she launched SUGU Snacks, a line of breakfast bars and cookies that minimize ingredients like sugar and sodium without sacrificing quality.

Susan explains what makes SUGU Snacks so unique and why they're a must-have in every shopping cart.

What are SUGU Snacks? How do they compare to other cookies on the market?

SUGU Snacks produces a line of all-natural, whole grain cookie dough. SUGU’s products include:
  • breakfast bars,
  • pre-portioned frozen cookie dough,
  • baked cookies, and 
  • our newest addition, SUGU’s Gluten Free Cookie Dough.

It is SUGU’s unprecedented combination of ingredients that separates us from any other cookie on the market. Our cookies use a low-fat, low-sugar, and low-sodium recipe, combining whole grain oats, real butter and real sugar that help us achieve success in taste-testings.

While other manufacturers may claim 51% whole grain content, SUGU Snacks cookies are 73% whole grain with 8 grams of whole grain per cookie.

SUGU’s whole grain content comes primarily from oats. Research consistently shows that the consumption of oats contributes to heart-health and intestinal health.

Where are SUGU Snacks available for purchase?

SUGU Snacks pre-portioned, frozen cookie dough is sold at all Dash’s Market locations, as well as at Lexington Co-op on Elmwood Avenue in Buffalo.

An online ordering system is currently being developed.

During the school year, students may purchase fresh-baked SUGU cookies from their participating school cafeteria. The use of whole grain plus low-sugar provides a longer digestion time with a slow, steady release of sugar into the blood stream. This combination offers the child a feeling of fullness over a longer period of time, along with sustained energy.

With SUGU breakfast bars and cookies, children do not experience a rush of sugar, jitteriness or an inability to concentrate, as may happen with other brands.

What led you to create SUGU Snacks and how did you develop the recipe?

Nutrition has always been a passion of mine from the days of cooking in the kitchen with my mom and grandmother.

The quest for developing healthy recipes grew with a move to Southern California, where I lived for ten years. With the extended warm weather, fresh produce abounds year round, as did visitors from Western New York attempting to evade the cold weather! With plenty of guests, I was able to cultivate my craft of concocting scrumptiously-healthy recipes.

My interest in the health of families intensified after giving birth to my own two children. I saw first-hand how dependent this little baby was on the foods that I fed him and the importance of the food that a parent chooses and the information available to educate parents. I thought that if I, as a registered nurse in Maternal-Child Health, struggled with finding resources on feeding a baby in a nutritionally-sound manner, what is every other parent doing who does not have access to the information?

In speaking with pediatricians and insurance providers, I was encouraged to begin writing about what it takes to feed children nutritiously from birth. This led to the writing and publishing of two books regarding early childhood nutrition, the period between birth and five years of age.

“Growing a Healthy Baby, One Spoonful at a Time,” and “Growing a Healthy Preschooler, One Meal at a Time” focus on helping parents grow well-rounded eaters and learn to navigate through the picky-eater phenomenon. Each book is seasoned with a mixture of original recipes for breakfast, lunch, dinner and snack-time. It is through the healthful snack recipes that SUGU Snacks was born.

As part of my role in building healthier communities, I assist school districts with nutrition education for Universal Pre-K programs and Elementary schools. At meetings, I repeatedly heard comments relating to unhealthy snacks and the lack of choices. I knew my books held many recipes for nutritious snacks, ones that children in the neighborhood enjoyed and little league teams clamored for. At one school district meeting, I offered to make nutritious cookies for a trial at one school. The success led to forming a company, contracting with a local bakery, all to manufacture nourishing cookies and providing a healthy option for all to enjoy.

My original recipe went through many revisions. At first it was too grainy, then too cake-like, then too hard, too dry, and on and on. After two years in the test-kitchen, the final SUGU recipe was born. Precisely the right amount of everything good for you!

That just happens to be our motto, “SUGU Snacks…So Good For You!”

To purchase SUGU Snacks, visit a Dash's Market near you or Lexington Co-op on Elmwood Avenue.

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