“ Manufacturer: Benecol / Food Type: Spread „
I am a member of a great website called Bzz Agent which is a company who promote products through allowing website members to test products and then talk about them to friends and aquaintances. Being a member has allowed me to try many products that I wouldn't normally use and this is the case with this Benecol Olive Spread. I would never normally have bought this due to the high cost of the product in relation to similar margarine spreads and butter products, but since trying the product for the Bzz Agent project I've since purchased it of my own choice.
When I was sent a voucher by Bzz Agent to try a Benecol product I decided to try one of their spreads. The company also make things like yoghurts, cream cheese and yoghurt drinks. Their spreads also have a selected range including this Olive oil variety, a Light version and a special Buttery spread. I chose to get the Olive spread because I thought it might have great health benefits.
You can buy the spread in a 500g sized pack. The packaging is okay but I find the lid quite flimsy and difficult to slot back into place. You end up fiddling a lot to get it to stay closed. The amount of information printed on the tub is great though.
This spread is a 55 % reduced fat spread with 14 % of that Olive oil and it also has added plant stanols. I had never heard of stanols before and they are unique to the Benecol range. The 'Plant Stanol Ester' is clinicially proven to reduce bad cholesterol. The ingredients also contain rapeseed oil, olive oil, vegetable oil, buttermilk poweder and vitamins A and D. The spread is high in unsaturated fats, or the 'good' fats.
The brand say this tub contains 41 times 12g servings and provide nutritional information per 12 grams. This provides 60 calories or 6.6g fat. They also list the values per 100g of product at 498 calories and 55g fat. Benecol reccommend consuming 2-3 servings of this spread a day.
The spread is quite a rich, deep yellow colour and looks very tasty. It's soft like margarine and spreads easily, your knife just slipping through the substance. It can be used for a variety of things like baking and using during cooking. I do notice that the spread when melted tends to return to a very oily substance which in appearance is more like cooking oil than melted margarine. The taste of this spread is really lovely. It's buttery and creamy and has that distinctive but mild olive oil hint. It goes well with anything in a sandwich and it has a taste all of it's own when spread on toast or over mashed potato. I can't compare this to any butter products as it's more like a margarine spread but the quality is double that of any margarine I've ever had. It doesn't have that thinness of texture that would make it melt into bread so it doesn't turn bread soggy or become watery. I know some people when they join Bzz Agent feel they ought to just praise the product they are trialling but in this case I genuinely love the spread and would whole heartedly reccommend it. My only problem about the product is it's price. It's priced very highly and is usually the most expensive spread in the store at around £3 a tub.
This spread is marketed to have specific health benefits so it's perhaps best for people who need to be on a special diet. As for myself I can't say I feel any different after consuming this spread for a few months but I enjoy knowing that the spread is healthier than the butter I normally eat.
The spread is suitable for baking, freezing and frying and also marked as being vegetarian. You should check with your doctor if you are already taking cholesterol lowering products or medication. The spread 'may not' be suitable for pregnant or breast feeding ladies and children under 5.
You can check out the website for lots of health information or phone their helpline:
Tel (UK): 0800 0184010