By Jackie Rainford Corcoran EBS Health Columnist

As a holistic health coach and columnist, hearing about strategies that help us reduce or eliminate refined sugar from our diets lifts my spirits. An energy tablet company called Voke Tab is trying to do just that.

After noticing that their customers were replacing sweetened drinks with their product, the creators of Voke Tab launched the Voke90 Challenge: for 90 days, you swap one sugary beverage for a chewable Voke Tab and a glass of water.

According to the “Vokenomics” on the company’s website, you will reduce your empty calorie consumption and potentially save money.

The health coaching school I attended, the Institute for Integrative Nutrition, calls this method of replacing an unhealthy choice with a healthier one, “crowding out.” It helps fill the void that is created when you eliminate unhealthy foods and/or habits.

Voke Tab founder and president Kalen Caughey never intended to create a product or start a company, but in his quest to find a healthy energy solution to use during freestyle ski competitions—something portable enough to carry in his jacket pocket—Voke Tabs were born.

The Hamilton, Montana, native set out to make energy lozenges and tested various active ingredients with help from his father.
“Fortunately my Dad is a biochemist and helped me hone in exclusively on ingredients with peer-reviewed scientific research, demonstrating physical and mental benefits,” Caughey said in a recent interview.

Caughey’s product attracted a team who continued to tweak the recipe over the following years. A Voke Tab now contains a moderate amount of green tea leaf caffeine—77 milligrams, roughly equivalent to a small cup of coffee—as well as 100 percent of your daily recommended vitamin C and a serving of organic guarana berry seed, which is reported to enhance mental focus. They were careful keep the recipe clean using no artificial sweeteners, colors or flavors.

Voke ambassadors and mountaineers Jimmy Chin and Conrad Anker, world-class kayaker Tyler Bradt, and other accomplished athletes were essential in product testing. Caughey began distributing to bike, ski and outdoor retailers, and eventually expanded into select grocery and convenience stores.

“It’s been an organic growth process driven by passionate customers and their word of mouth to get to where we are now,” he says.

And now, the Voke team has its sights on helping its customers curb their refined sugar intake. With sugar contributing significantly to weight gain and chronic diseases like diabetes, this is a big problem that needs solving.
A 2011 study on concluded that the consumption of sweetened beverages has significantly contributed to the American obesity epidemic.

It states that, ” … sweetened beverages account for at least one-fifth of the weight gained between 1977 and 2007 in the U.S. population. Actions that are successful in reducing sweetened beverage consumption are likely to have a measurable impact on obesity.”
If you rely on sweetened and/or caffeinated beverages for an energy boost, the Voke90 Challenge is a potential solution to help you maintain your stamina while “crowding out” sugar.

Visit to register for the Voke90 Challenge, or for more information.

Jackie Rainford Corcoran is an IIN Certified Holistic Health Coach and Consultant, a public speaker and health advocate. Contact her at