I had never thought of trying this myself. I eat a salad every day and vegetables at every dinner and sometimes at breakfast too! But a client told me she had really noticed decreased appetite, increased energy, and weight loss after taking it consistently for a week or so. So I tried it. I was pleasantly SHOCKED to also notice the decreased appetite and increased energy right away. So I decided to look a bit deeper.
It turns out that this is a tricky question. I could not find a ton of research to support this theory. I have found numerous accounts online and from other clients who also claim the following benefits of taking a greens supplement:
- Increased Energy
- Weight Loss
- Decreased Appetite
- Feeling of well being
My Theory/Take on the Idea
Most of us do not eat the recommend 8-10 servings of fruits and vegetables a day. It’s just not always easy. Many of you who are reading this are also interested in weight loss so you are probably restricting your calories. I have always suggested a multivitamin if this is the case. But I am considering also suggesting a greens powder. Why? Because when you calories are restricted, your nutrient intake is too. If your body senses restriction it could go into that starvation mode that is so frustrating. This is when you are not losing fat even though you are restricting calories because your body thinks it needs to hold on to/store as fat the nutrition that you are consuming.
I did find that according to the Journal of the International Society of Sports Nutrition taking a greens supplement can help increase the alkalinity of the body. This has been linked to better health, weight loss, and improved performance. If the body is too acidic it can cause a variety of symptoms according to the Center for Advanced Health. These symptoms could include indigestion, heartburn, weight gain, difficulty losing weight, brain fog, fatigue, sore muscles… So if a greens drink can decrease the acidity of the body than it seems like it could help with weight loss and energy too!
On the Flip Side
Ben Greenfield brings up a great point about phytochemicals. These nutrients have been proven to fight disease and cancer and reduce your risk of stroke and high blood pressure. There are close to a thousand phytochemicals that are possible from the tons of food sources out there. But these phytochemicals are not as effective in powder form. Also it is important to note that powders are not as effective as real fruits and vegetables because when you isolate compounds they are not as effective as when you have the other complimentary compounds found in fruits or vegetables. For example eating a tomato gives you a great dose of usable lycopene. Eating only lycopene is not as healthful on its own because within that tomato are other nutrients that compliment lycopene. So eating your fruits and vegetables is probably the best option. If this is a possibility. We know that it is not always easy to do this.
When a greens supplement is right for you to try:
1. If you are restricting calories for weight loss.
2. If you do not eat the proper amount just because you don’t like them.
3. You are on vacation and your diet is not up to your usual standards.
4. You are just busy and not able to get in all your servings.
But remember that not all products are equal.
Prevention Magazine warns that it’s important to check that the company that you get it from is producing a quality product.
I would love to know your take on this. Please leave a comment or talk to me more next time I see you!