Green powders are an amazing supplement, with many people interested in understanding their benefits and using them as part of a balanced diet. They help boost your energy, keep you healthy, and power up your body with phytonutrients and other important elements.
But not all green drinks are the same so you really need to do your research before committing to a certain brand. And since we know this task can get difficult (because of the plethora of producers and pseudo-producers), we’ve whipped up a quick guide to help you understand the most important factors to consider.
#1: Check the Ingredients
Yes, this is a tedious job, but it is for your own good and shouldn’t be overlooked. At first it will be difficult to make sense of what you’re reading as many green drinks come with dozens of ingredients. Not to mention that each one is unique.
To avoid feeling lost and confused, you should know there is a formula. Most green drinks come with a base of green superfoods (grasses, sea vegetables and algae, and green vegetables), complemented by antioxidants and herbs. A high-quality green drink will come with at least one or two ingredients from each category of superfoods.
You should also consider the presence of digestive enzymes and other ingredients that can assist your metabolism such as green tea extract and stevia leaf.
Generally green powders won’t contain a high proportion of protein so don’t expect them to help you meet your daily protein intake.
#2: Added Sugars
On the label, you’ll also find information on added sugars per serving. This is a very important piece of information and you should treat it accordingly. First, you have to know that the maximum amount of sugars you should consume daily is roughly 30g for adults (according to the NHS).
If we consider the sugar intake you’ll get from other foods and drinks, it’s vital that your green drink doesn’t come with a sugar bomb. Compare the sugar per serving across various green powders before making an informed decision.
#3: The Taste
Many veggies and grasses used in green drinks don’t taste great on their own, but the resulting product can be quite acceptable. If you’re wondering how this is possible, you should know that you’re not just drinking veggies and grasses, you’re also drinking fruits.
Still, you have to check the fruits to greens ratio because the green color can be deceiving. Fruits are healthy, but without the fiber intake, all the sugar will be absorbed directly into your bloodstream creating a peak of energy and an imbalance in your insulin production.
Thus, it is very important to make sure your green drink contains both fruits and vegetables, with the overwhelming preference being a higher proportion of vegetables.
#4: The Cost
There is a difference between a greens drink with great ingredients that is worth your money and one that provides you with minimal nutritional and health benefits. Once you learn to read the label and start to understand what’s in your drink, it gets easier to appreciate the economic value of the product.
First, check for the total grams of greens contained by the product and then look for probiotics and enzymes; if they are present and in acceptable quantities, you can move forward to step three. Here is where you check the total grams per serving and total servings per container. Once you know these, you can calculate the cost per serving and find out if it is affordable or not.
Our advice is to keep looking until you find a product worthy of your money, but still affordable. After all, this is not the only thing you need to consume; you have to calculate food in your daily spending as well.
#5: Do you Really Need it?
Yes, the ultimate test! Before you start buying super greens powder to make you healthier and more energetic, step aside for a few minutes and analyze your eating habits. What type of food is on your plate every day? Do you eat home cooked meals or prefer fast food? What’s the veggie to meat to carbs ratio?
The basic idea is that if you get your 5-a-day already you probably don’t need a green powder supplement. Otherwise, you should certainly consider it.