Anti-clockwise IV therapy, a superfood coffee alternative and more – our top picks from the AllSport expo

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The Mesquite beans used in MannaBrew's superfood coffee. From left are the beans in its pure form, roasted and in its powder form.
The Mesquite beans used in MannaBrew's superfood coffee. From left are the beans in its pure form, roasted and in its powder form.
Image by Zakiyah Ebrahim
  • News24 attended the AllSport Expo at Cape Town's CTICC this month.
  • The exhibition featured a range of fitness and wellness products that can help you reach your health and fitness goals, and transform your lifestyle.
  • Whether your aim  is to stay in shape or eat healthier, we list some of the top picks from the Expo that are worth checking out.

This past weekend, the Cape Town International Convention Centre (CTICC) launched the AllSport Expo, which featured everything from outdoor and indoor sports to exciting health, nutrition, medical and wellness products.

Below we list our top six products that stood out from the pack.

1. iTouch

A device that can give you a massage without a human involved? Yes, please.

The iTouch range features a range of products, including a phone, TENS slippers and a muscle toning belt. 

TENS, which stands for “transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation”, is a method of pain relief involving the use of a mild electrical current. The Tens machine is a small, battery-operated device that connects to sticky pads, called electrodes. 

The iTouch Massager Touch X device allows you to have two massages with different intensities at the same time. Depending on your needs, you can select from 12 massage modes - from tapping (for back spasms) and tuina (for a hand massage) to acupuncture and shiatsu.   

Used to help treat sports injuries, back, neck, knee and period pain, as well as arthritis, the brand is a pioneer in the massage devices market.

Note: the product is not suitable for pregnant women and people with pacemakers.

Available on itouchsa.com and at their Canal Walk branch.

2. MannaBrew

If you want to ditch your coffee for a healthier option, MannaBrew may be the brew for you. 

Described as a full, rich superfood expresso, the roasted mesquite bean powder - which comes from the hardy Mesquite tree - is high in nutritional value. 

It contains no caffeine or acidity found in coffee, but the essential sugars from the Mesquite beans are known to energise and uplift, just like caffeinated coffee, but without any side effects.

WATCH | Climate change forcing Peruvian coffee farmers to abandon the bean

Brand manager, Pieter Coetzee, told News24 that farmlands are being taken over by thousands of invasive thorn trees - Mesquite trees - on the banks of the mighty Orange River in the Northern Cape. Locals consider the trees to be a nuisance, but founders of MannaBrew, Aam and Brandt Coetzee, discovered that the seed pods from the trees are not just a superfood but can be used to make “coffee” too.

We had a taste, and the brew’s subtly sweet, dark caramel flavour tasted very similar to coffee.

As its website explains: “It looks like coffee, can be made the same way as coffee, enjoyed the same way coffee would be, but it is a superfood that tastes super good.”

Available on mannabrew.co.za and in selected coffee shops.

3. Aromatic Apothecary

Thirty years ago, a pharmacist wanted to create a more effective product than a drug to give people pain relief. She believed medicines were often overprescribed and overused, so she started making aromatherapy products.

“But I think I was 30 years too early,” says Doryce Sher, owner of Aromatic Apothecary, who later studied aromatherapy and began to understand how plant-based ingredients can help alleviate many common pains.

Essential oils, which are compounds extracted from plants, have become increasingly popular, but Doryce says many people buy these oils and don’t know what to do with them. “So I started making ready-to-use products.”

“I use the smell part of a plant, which is the aromatic part, and when it is used properly, it has a beneficial effect on the body,” she says. The line features a “stress-less” and “sports relief range”.

One of the best-sellers, the roll-on relief sports edition, contains essential oils of ginger, rosemary (improves circulation), peppermint (cooling), and lavender (relaxing). You can use it after exercising or if you have a 'tech neck' and want to work your muscles. 

Available on aromatic.co.za and at selected pharmacies and Wellness Warehouse stores.

4. Body20

This fitness studio offers a unique fitness option that allows you, while being strapped into a suit, to stimulate your muscles externally from machines. Lira, former Miss SA Melinda Bam and former Top Billing hostess Jade Hubner all swear by the muscle-strengthening effects of EMS training, YOU magazine previously reported.

One of the main benefits is that it saves you time: “Twenty minutes of electro muscular stimulation (EMS) training is equivalent to about 4-6 hours in a normal gym,” says clinical dietitian and owner of the Body20 Claremont studio, Lebo Dioka.

READ MORE | Body20: A new frontier in fitness

EMS has been used in the medical space, including by physiotherapists, for many years and is now moving into the fitness space. Electrotherapy works by stimulating a muscle contraction - using electrical impulses - in order to strengthen weak muscles, reduce swelling, relieve pain and help heal wounds, explains Physio UK.

“You only need to come in for strength training once a week, and it’s like going to the gym multiple times,” says Lebo. 

You can pay per session or take out a membership. Sessions start from R250, and results depend on your goal, such as feeling fitter and stronger, building muscle, losing body weight, or recovering from an injury. 

Branches are available across South Africa. Find out more at body20.co.za.

5. MobivIVE

IV therapy has swiftly moved from being a common medical treatment to a hot new trend. The therapy involves liquid vitamin infusions delivered directly into your vein through an IV drip.

The wellness trend is a favourite among some celebrities, including Rihanna and Cindy Crawford.

In Cape Town, one company has transformed the way you can receive this therapy by bringing their “revive lounge” to you with their lounge on wheels.

MobivIVE, a mobile IV drip therapy and revive lounge, offers uniquely designed IV treatments that cover a wide range of health and wellness needs, including the “hangover treatment”, “detoxify IV therapy”, and “anti-ageing IV therapy”.

“It’s not your average day-to-day vitamins,” Sister Zelda tells News24. “The drips are formulised by a medical doctor, who can also book a consultation with you. He will then send off your blood and customise an IV drip for you based on your needs.”

The treatments promise a “whole experience of relaxation and revival, where you can put on your meditation goggles before or after the drip,” and unwind, says Sister Zelda.

Book a session online on mobivive.co.za.

6. Enduren Nutrition

This brand offers an all-natural sports nutrition range that caters to endurance sports, such as cycling, mountain biking, trail running, marathon running and paddling. The products are especially designed for hydration, endurance, energy, recovery and wellness without side effects.

The niche product has been in the market since 1999, and its main point of difference is that the products are natural. 

READ MORE | Here’s what energy drinks actually do to your body

“Our endurance drink, which is our premier product, is colourless, flavourless and looks like water,” Enduren founder Barry Pauw tells News24. “It has a slight sweet undertone, so it’s easier to drink during longer events and in hot weather, where you won’t get that mucus buildup that you get from the very sweet [drinks].”

People battle with side effects that are often due to the additives in their nutrition, such as difficulty breathing or an upset stomach, but don’t realise it, says Pauw.

Available online on enduren.co.za.


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