Air Up: A Fusion of Science and Design for Better Nutrition

Air Up: A Fusion of Science and Design for Better Nutrition

Air Up Compatible Flavor Pods

Air Up, the brainchild of Lena Jüngst and Tim Jäger, emerged from their exploration of Neurogastronomy: How the Brain Creates Flavor and Why It Matters, a book authored by neuroscientist Gordon M. Shepherd. This influential book challenges conventional beliefs by emphasizing the dominant role of the sense of smell in flavor perception. Empowered by Shepherd's insights, Jüngst and Jäger embarked on a mission to breathe life into their inaugural Air Up prototype, driven by the mission of "Uniting Neuroscience with Innovative Design." Their objective? To contribute to global well-being by addressing the issue of inadequate hydration, a common aspect of poor nutrition. This avant-garde water bottle accommodates 15 distinctive Air Up flavor pods and is offered in two variations—plastic and stainless steel—both of which can be tailored with a spectrum of vibrant accessories.

Air Up Compatible Food Grade Flavor Pods and Bottles: Sipperment

How Air Up works

Uncover the flavor alchemy that sets Air Up apart, where scent takes center stage. Air Up underscores the significance of olfactory receptors, capable of identifying an astounding 1 trillion scents. The brand elucidates:

"Retronasal smelling is the cornerstone of Air Up's innovation. It's how we infuse plain water with 'flavored' air from our pods. When you sip from our bottles, your nasal receptors interpret this 'flavored' air as taste, enhancing your beverage without altering its actual flavor. It's like a symphony of scent and taste."

With Air Up, you'll experience a transformation where scent becomes an integral part of your drink.

Give your hydration a flavorful twist with these effective instructions for Air Up. First, fill your water bottle to the capacity line and connect the mouthpiece with the straw. Carefully position the circular pod over the mouthpiece and activate it. When you take a sip, enjoy the sensory delight of scented air bubbles traveling through the straw, translating into taste.

Air Up Compatible Food Grade Flavor Pods and Bottles: Sipperment

How we tested Air Up

At the Good Housekeeping Institute Kitchen Appliances and Innovation Lab, water bottles are a frequent subject of examination. We rigorously evaluate them for performance, durability, and user-friendliness. However, when the Air Up water bottle came onto our radar, we knew it was time for a unique testing approach.

Our dedicated 11-person testing panel, consisting of consumers, dietitians, kitchen equipment experts, engineers, and chemists, embarked on a comprehensive journey. This endeavor resulted in over a hundred data points and invaluable feedback, encompassing taste perceptions, comfort during usage, and shifts in hydration habits.

In our Lab, we didn't skimp on testing. We conducted drop and leak tests on both plastic and stainless steel Air Up models. Our assessment extended to nine distinct flavor pods, which we

meticulously rated for flavor quality, longevity, and strength. We also examined the water bottle's ease of use, considering aspects such as filling, carrying, drinking, and cleaning.

Air Up Compatible Food Grade Flavor Pods and Bottles: Sipperment

What is in the flavor pods?

Air Up's flavor pods are a result of their dedication to natural ingredients. They craft these pods using natural flavors extracted from plants, fruits, and spices, although specific intellectual property details remain closely guarded.

The brand boasts a wide variety of 15 flavors available on their website, ranging from the classic apple to the intriguing basil-lemon and the indulgent orange-vanilla. You can explore these scents through variety packs or stock up on your top picks with three-packs. Additionally, each water bottle starter set includes an assortment of flavor pods.

During our testing, personal preferences influenced the results, with no single scent emerging as a unanimous favorite. Testers provided insights into scent strength and flavor experiences.

Air Up Compatible Food Grade Flavor Pods and Bottles: Sipperment

How long do Air Up pods last?

According to Air Up, each of its pods is engineered to enhance approximately 1.3 gallons of water with captivating scents. Furthermore, the company recommends checking the "best before" date on each pod, as the scent's intensity may diminish over time, delivering the most satisfying experience when the pod is freshly opened. It is crucial to maintain the pods in their original packaging, as they are not washable and should only be unsealed just before attaching them to your water bottle.

Our findings indicated that if the pods remained attached to the water bottle for an extended duration without use, the fragrance gradually dissipated, leading to a subdued "flavor" for the water. Our experts, considering the per-pod cost and the current online-only purchasing option, expressed a desire for pods with a more prolonged lifespan.

Air Up Compatible Food Grade Flavor Pods and Bottles: Sipperment

Does the Air Up water bottle work?

Do Air Up water bottles truly work as advertised? Our comprehensive testing process revealed that they do indeed succeed in infusing water with the flavors of their pods. Among the flavors we examined, the mango-passionfruit pod left a lasting impression with its juicy and delightful "flavor." However, opinions on the orange-vanilla pod were divided, with some finding it somewhat artificial.

As we analyzed the data and the feedback from our testers, it became clear that personal preferences and scent perception played a significant role in shaping the experience. Scent perception is a deeply personal matter, influenced by individual associations and the distinct nature of each person's sense of smell. Some testers did not foresee integrating the Air Up water bottle into their daily routine after testing, while others considered it an innovative enhancement.

One tester shared, "Inhaling the scent didn't heighten the flavor for me," while another noted, "This is no mere gimmick. On days when plain water feels uninspiring, the Air Up bottle elevates the hydration experience." Ultimately, your journey with Air Up is intimately connected to your sensory perceptions.

Air Up Compatible Food Grade Flavor Pods and Bottles: Sipperment

Additional Lab and tester notes

Join us in uncovering the durability, weight, and comfort attributes of Air Up water bottles. We've meticulously examined the lightweight plastic version and contrasted it with the substantial stainless steel alternative in terms of weight.

Through comprehensive drop testing, we've assessed how well both materials can withstand multiple drops onto hard concrete surfaces, highlighting their respective strengths and weaknesses. These practical tests provide valuable insights into their durability.

Our leak testing procedures focused on evaluating the bottles' ability to maintain a watertight seal when placed horizontally with tightly secured lids. Explore the variations in leak resistance between the plastic and stainless steel models.

Furthermore, we delved into the comfort aspect of the Air Up water bottle, particularly focusing on the mouthpiece and ease of sipping. Cleaning and maintenance considerations, including the advantages of the stainless steel model, are also discussed.

Air Up Compatible Food Grade Flavor Pods and Bottles: Sipperment

So, is the Air Up water bottle worth it?

The Air Up water bottle prompts the question: is it a worthwhile addition to your daily routine? This unique bottle caters to those who appreciate the taste of flavored water and find it easier to meet their hydration goals with a dash of flavor.

Stefani Sassos, M.S., R.D.N., C.S.O., C.D.N., NASM-CPT, the Nutrition Lab Director at the Good Housekeeping Institute, believes, "Individuals who struggle with staying properly hydrated may find this bottle beneficial, especially if they consider plain water dull." If you have a busy lifestyle and find it challenging to infuse your water with fresh ingredients, Air Up might be the solution you've been seeking.

However, it's important to consider that the Air Up water bottle may not be suitable for everyone, especially those who consume substantial amounts of water and require a larger bottle capacity (the plastic version holds 22 ounces, while the stainless steel version holds 28 ounces). As one tester pointed out, "I wish it came in different sizes to reduce the need for frequent refills."

Budget-conscious individuals should also take note, as regularly purchasing flavor pods can impact your finances. A three-pack of pods, which flavors approximately 3.9 gallons of water, may become an ongoing expense. Nevertheless, with seven out of 11 testers recommending Air Up, it appears to have garnered widespread appeal.

Air Up Compatible Food Grade Flavor Pods and Bottles: Sipperment

ref: Air Up Water Bottle Review: We Tested the Water Bottle That "Flavors" Water Via Scent

Reading next

Air Up: Transforming Flavor Perception Through Science and Design
Air Up: Bridging the Gap Between Science and Design for Health

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