Most of us have been bombarded by endless advertisements of green powders. Top health and nutrition brands like Thorne, HUM Nutrition, Athletic Greens, etc. have come up with this trendy supplement. Often added to acai bowls, smoothies, or simply water, these green powders are claimed to deliver an all-in-one fix for all our essential minerals and vitamins. Now, are they really beneficial for our health, or just another health-hoax, caught up in the current trend? Let’s find out from registered nutritionists and dietitians.
What Are Green Powders?
Green powders are basically powdered nutrients, made from a variety of dried-out and ground-up fruits and leaves. Then antioxidant-rich algae like chlorella and spirulina are generally added to the powdered mix. Along with adaptogens and probiotics, these blends are supposed to pack all the micronutrients found in their source ingredients. One serving of these green powders generally promises to improve gastrointestinal function, support immunity, and boost energy.
What’s the Word of Caution?
According to professional health advisor Amanda Baker Lemein, RD, green powders are not approved by the FDA in the same way foods and a few health supplements are. So, it’s necessary to find out if they can actually help you to meet your requirements in a day, before swapping up your green salads for green shakes with these powders.
Are Green Powders Healthy?
Green powders can be healthy, but not similar to nutrient-providing whole foods. Whole foods give us beneficial nutrients like Vitamin C and fiber that can be lost in the production process of these powders. Also, these nutrients are easily and better absorbed when consumed directly from the source ingredients. On the bright side, you can reap some health benefits from powdered greens containing probiotics and prebiotics. Researches show that probiotics are helpful for digestive issues, and prebiotics boost these beneficial microorganisms.
Are There Any Side Effects of Green Powders?
As a fact, green powders can cause a few side effects if consumed alongside particular medicines. If your green powder contains Vitamin K, then increased intake of it can affect the absorption process of blood-thinner medicine, making it less effective. Also, it’s better to consult your doctor before using green powders, if you have any kind of allergies. According to dietitian Marisa Moore, RDN, some green powder products in the market contain heavy metals and harmful contaminants. So, before grabbing one, look for third-party testing seals from any international standards organization like NSF.