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With their rise in popularity, a lot of clients have been asking me, “Are green powders a waste of money?” As a Registered Dietitian, I can say that green powders are not a waste – as long as you know how to select a good one.
If you don’t eat at least five servings of fruits and vegetables, green powders can be a great way to boost your nutrient intake. They can also help improve recovery, decrease inflammation, and enhance the immune system.
While there are several more benefits to green powder supplements, you need to know how to choose the one that’s best for you. Otherwise, you are throwing your money down the drain.
For example, you need to look at the serving size, ingredients, taste, texture, pricing, and other key elements we are going to discuss later in this article.
Keep reading to get a full breakdown on the nutritional benefits of green powders, how to choose the best one, and what are the top three green powder supplements I recommend.
What are green powders?
Green powder supplements are dietary supplements made with powdered vegetables. In some cases, you can also find them with powdered fruits, algae, mushrooms, adaptogens, herbs, spices, and probiotics.
On average, the supplements might contain 20 to 50 ingredients. However, there is no standard as to how many ingredients the supplement must have. It all depends on the company and its formula.
How are green powders made?
You make green powders by blending several ingredients in powdered form.
The raw materials (fruits and vegetables) are harvested, made into juice, and then dehydrated to create the powder.
Once the company knows which ingredients it wants and at what doses, it mixes them with flavoring and other additives to create a tasty and stable formula for you to drink daily.
What are greens good for?
Greens are good for increasing your nutrient intake. They provide essential vitamins and minerals the body needs to stay healthy. Also, they can help promote good digestion, enhance the immune system, reduce inflammation, and reduce the risk of chronic illness.
Keep in mind that every green has a different nutritional profile and benefit.
So, combining several of them can bring all types of health benefits, like the ones mentioned before.
What do greens do for you?
Green powder supplements can boost your fruit and vegetable intake. According to research, it seems that only 10% of adults manage to get the daily recommended intake of fruits and vegetables.
So, green powders can be a convenient way of getting your nutrients quickly and on the go. They are a supplement worth purchasing for people who are constantly traveling and those who don’t have enough time to prepare enough fruits and vegetables.
They’re also great for those of us who don’t want to chew through mass quantities of kale. But with that said, remember that green powders cannot fully replace fresh fruits and vegetables. You still need to have an adequate intake of fresh produce to have a healthy diet.
Is green powder healthy?
Yes, green powders are generally healthy. They can contain high levels of essential vitamins and minerals. They can help reduce inflammation, improve digestion, and support the immune system.
However, not all green powders are healthy. It all depends on the ingredients used and the quality of those ingredients.
Some fruits and vegetables can contain toxins or heavy metals. That is why it’s important to analyze the label and check for each company’s certifications.
Common Green Powders’ Ingredients
There might be similarities in the ingredients used in each green powder, but no supplement has the exact same list of ingredients. It varies from brand to brand.
Still, here is a list of the most common ingredients in green powder supplements.
- Leafy greens: Kale, spinach, moringa, collard greens, and parsley.
- Vegetables: Tomatoes, carrots, beets, broccoli, and cabbage.
- Fruits: Blueberries, strawberries, raspberries, apples, and blackberries.
- Algae and seaweed: Chlorella, spirulina, kelp, and nori.
- Grasses: Wheatgrass, alfalfa grass, oat grass, and barley grass.
- Herbs and spices: Ginger root, turmeric, milk thistle, echinacea, astragalus, and cinnamon.
- Adaptogens: Ginkgo Biloba, ashwagandha, green tea extract, and white tea extract.
- Mushrooms: Cordyceps, Lion’s mane, shiitake, and maitake.
- Probiotics: Lactobacillus and Bifidobacterium.
- Digestive aids: Lipase, papain, bromelain, amylase, and protease.
- Fiber: Inulin, pectin, and FOS.
Health Benefits of Green Powders
The nutrients provided by green powders can contribute to better health. Let’s see what the biggest benefits of powdered greens may be.
Increased Nutrient Intake
Since green powder supplements have a range of fruits and vegetables they can be a source of essential vitamins and minerals.
Remember that most guidelines recommend consuming at least five or six portions of fruits and vegetables per day. And, as mentioned before, only 10% of people manage to reach that intake.
So, green powders are a convenient way to help get all the nutrients the body needs to stay healthy.
Improved Digestive Health
Several ingredients like enzymes, herbs (like ginger root), and probiotics can all help improve digestive health. They may work to improve gut health (the bacteria living in your intestines).
When your gut is happy and healthy it can help break down food and reduce digestive symptoms like constipation, bloating, and gas.
Enhanced Energy and Stamina
There are several ways how a green powder can help increase energy and stamina. But, let’s talk about the two main ones.
The first one is that many green powder supplements provide several vitamins from the B complex. These vitamins help convert the food you eat into usable energy in the body. As a result, you can get the most out of your meals. Thus, boosting energy levels.
The second way is that the green powder supplement might contain ingredients with caffeine like green tea leaf extract, matcha, or coffee. Caffeine has an effect on the central nervous system, creating a state of alertness, which means you feel less tired.
Stronger Immune System
Since green powder supplements are high in antioxidants, they can help reduce inflammation. As a result, the body can focus solely on the immune system to help fight external agents that want to cause harm.
Additionally, since some green powder supplements have probiotics, they help modulate the immune system. So, the healthier the gut is, the stronger the immune system.
Antioxidants are molecules that can reduce the damage done by free radicals. Free radicals are unstable molecules that can affect the DNA.
Too many free radicals lead to oxidative stress, which leads to inflammation, poor digestion, and the immune system. That’s why the free radical-fighting power of antioxidants is so essential to multiple benefits.
Healthy Blood Pressure
Green powder supplements are full of nutrients like potassium, magnesium, and nitrates which are all essential to help reduce blood pressure.
On top of that, there are some ingredients that can help reduce cholesterol levels, which puts less stress on the vessels, promoting adequate blood pressure.
Improved Mental Clarity
Nootropics are ingredients in green powder supplements that can have a positive effect on cognitive function. They can help reduce stress and improve focus.
Ingredients like ashwagandha, bacopa, and Ginkgo are all great ways to increase focus when taking a green powder supplement.
Lowered Risk of Chronic Diseases
Ingredients like cinnamon or apple cider vinegar can help regulate blood sugar levels, which decreases the risk of type 2 diabetes.
Also, there are other ingredients that can promote heart health. For example, fiber helps regulate blood sugar levels and may help decrease cholesterol levels.
Finally, some green powder supplements contain natural laxatives like aloe vera. They might support your body’s natural detoxification processes, creating a cleaner environment.
Potential Side Effects of Green Powders
Greens powders are typically safe and well-tolerated. But, like any other supplement, there’s always the risk of side effects.
The most common green superfood powder side effects are digestive issues. Some people experience bloating, gas, stomach cramps, and diarrhea. If this is the case, I always recommend reducing the scoop by half until your stomach gets used to them.
Uncommon side effects include allergic reactions due to some of the ingredients. Make sure you thoroughly read the label to check for any ingredient that might cause you harm.
Another side effect is possible interaction with medications. Always consult a doctor before taking any new supplement, especially if you are being treated for an underlying condition.
Finally, some green supplements might have high levels of heavy metals. While this is not always the case, check the label or the brand website to see if they address this. Look for any certification that may guarantee it doesn’t contain any toxins or heavy metals.
Do green powders work?
Yes, greens powders can work, but it all depends on the ingredient in each formula and the rest of your diet.
Remember that green powders are not a miracle cure. You still need fresh fruits and vegetables, lean protein, whole grains, and healthy fats to get all of the positive effects green powders can have.
Green Powder vs. Multivitamin
We’ve seen that green powder supplements are an excellent way to boost your nutrient intake. But, which one is better?
In my opinion, green powder supplements are better than multivitamins. They provide natural nutrients instead of synthetic ones.
In addition, they provide essential nutrients along with ingredients that can help reduce stress, improve gut health, and boost the immune system.
|Convenience||Requires Mixing||Tablet + Water|
|Health Benefits||Highly Beneficial||Moderately Beneficial|
How To Choose the Right Green Powder
Now we’re back to our first question. Are green powders worth it? Only if you know what to look for.
Here is my ultimate guide on how to choose the right green powder supplement.
Quality of Ingredients
Make sure to search for those green powders that use non-GMO, organic, and heavy metal-free ingredients.
If you are looking for a way to boost your health, it makes no sense to consume low-quality ingredients treated with chemicals that might cause harm to your gut.
So, always inspect a supplement closer to assess the quality of the fruits, herbs, and vegetables they include.
You are taking a green powder supplement to boost your nutrient intake. So, it makes no sense to get one that is not that high in essential vitamins and minerals.
Check the nutritional panel to see what amount of each vitamin or mineral it provides, and how that compares to the recommended daily intake (RDI).
Ideally, green powders are going to be a blend of several essential vitamins and minerals dosed near or beyond the RDI.
Check for additional benefits that the company provides.
For example, see if they have a money back guarantee, submit products to third-party testing, if they have any certifications, or if they offer free shipping.
All of these things are going to help you save money or further guarantee you are getting a high-quality product.
Taste and Texture
Taste and texture are subjective.
However, you don’t want to drink something unpleasant every day. If you don’t like the taste of greens alone, check out brands that offer additional flavors or include fruits.
What’s even better is if the supplement comes in at least two different flavors, so you don’t get bored.
If you’re worried what the taste and texture will be like, you can always check reviews and recommendations.
This brings me to my next point.
Reviews and Recommendations
Reviews can give you more insight into what the product is going to taste like, its benefits, or possible side effects without you having to purchase the product.
Try to read as many reviews as possible from different sources – not only the product’s website. As you dig around, you’ll be able to tell what a real, trustworthy customer review looks like.
Price and Value
Finally, check for the price and value of the product.
Don’t solely base your purchase on how cheap a product might be. Remember that high-quality ingredients in the correct doses might be costly, but that’s because it truly is more valuable.
There needs to be some in-depth analysis to see if the price reflects the value of the product. For example, how many ingredients does it have? Does it come in the right doses? How many servings are there per container, and what is the cost per serving?
All of these things can help you spot a fairly-priced product.
What greens powders are worth the money?
Now that you know how to pick a green powder supplement, check the ones available locally to have a closer look and see if they are worth purchasing.
But, if you want a recommendation on which are the best green powder supplements available on the market, I have three for you: Athletic Greens, Primal Greens, and Supergreen Tonik.
Athletic Greens (AG1)
Get free Vitamin D3+K2 AND 5 free travel packs when you buy a double subscription to Athletic Greens!
Athletic Greens are one of the most popular brands in the greens powder industry. They are supported by well-renowned names in the health and sports industry, like Dr. Andrew Huberman and Lewis Hamilton.
AG1 can support gut health, boost energy levels, and enhance the immune system, and has a delicious pineapple flavor.
There are 75 ingredients in Athletic Greens.
- Raw superfood complex: Spirulina, apple powder, inulin, wheat grass powder, alfalfa powder, acerola fruit juice powdered extract, broccoli flower powder, papaya fruit powder, pineapple fruit concentrate, bilberry fruit extract, beetroot powder, rose hip fruit powder, carrot root powder, spinach leaf powder, cocoa bean polyphenol extract, grape seed extract, green tea extract, licorice root powder, Lycium berry fruit extract, ginger rhizome powder, slippery elm bark powder, and kelp whole plant powder.
- Herbs and antioxidants: Alkaline pea protein isolate, citrus bioflavonoids extract, artichoke leaf extract, citric acid, Rhodiola root dry extract, Eleuthero, milk thistle seed extract, alpha-lipoic acid, ashwagandha root extract, dandelion whole plant dry concentrate, hawthorn berry extract, beta-glucans, policosanol, coenzyme Q-10, stevia, and vitamin K2.
- Digestive enzymes and super mushroom complex: Astragalus root powder extract, bromelain, burdock root extract, reishi mushroom powder, and shiitake mushroom powder.
- Dairy-free probiotics: L. acidophilus and B. bifidum.
The raw complex formula is high in ingredients with high antioxidant capacity. They help reduce inflammation, boost the immune system, and reduce the risk of chronic illness.
The herb and antioxidant formula contains powerful ingredients like ashwagandha. This ingredient can help reduce stress and promote a good night’s sleep.
Then, ingredients like bromelain and probiotics can help promote good digestion. They can help reduce digestive issues like bloating, constipation, and gas.
Overall, Athletic Greens is a good formula that contains essential ingredients to boost overall health. However, the fact that a 12-gram scoop contains 75 ingredients makes you wonder how many of them might be underdosed.
One bottle of Athletic Greens costs $79, meaning you pay $3.30 per serving.
But, you can save money if you enter their subscription program.
If you decide to have 30 servings shipped every month, you pay $2.63 per serving. And, if you opt for 60 servings delivered every month, you pay $2.48 per serving.
- Made with organic and non-GMO ingredients.
- No artificial flavors or coloring.
- NSF Good Manufacturing Processing certified.
- Offers a 90-day money-back guarantee.
- Has a travel size.
- Uses proprietary blends.
- Some ingredients might be underdosed.
- Only one flavor is available.
- Higher priced supplement.
Get free Vitamin D3+K2 AND 5 free travel packs when you buy a double subscription to Athletic Greens!
Primal Greens Powder
Another green powder worth analyzing is Primal Greens.
Primal Greens is a supplement with over 50 ingredients like fruits, vegetables, algae, mushrooms, probiotics, and herbs.
The formula blend can help you boost your energy levels, improve digestion, enhance the immune system, and improve heart health.
The ingredients are divided into four main blends.
- Superfood, antioxidant, and mushroom blend: Alfalfa leaf, carrot, wheat grass, spinach, spirulina, banana, coconut juice, broccoli, tomato, beet, cucumber, Brussel sprouts, cabbage, celery, kale, blackberry, raspberry, cranberry, pineapple, concord grape, cherry, apricot, orange, strawberry, chlorella, camu camu fruit, reishi mushroom, and maitake mushroom.
- Herbs and extracts: Acacia gum, acerola cherry extract, turmeric root, green tea leaf, cinnamon bark, Eleuthero root, ginger root, stevia, mangosteen extract, ashwagandha root, Korean ginseng root, and chlorophyllin.
- Digestive complex: Apple fiber, inulin, amylase, protease, glucoamylase, lipase, and cellulase.
- Probiotic blend: B. longum, L. acidophilus, and L. rhamnosus.
Like other greens powders, its antioxidant blend can help reduce inflammation and support the immune system.
Ingredients like ginger root, digestive enzymes, and probiotics can help promote good digestion and improve digestive issues.
Finally, Eleuthero (an Asian herb) can help boost energy levels and reduce stress levels.
One bag of Primal Greens costs $49.95, meaning you pay $1.66 per serving.
Plus, there are bulk savings available.
- Two bags: $46.95 per bag ($1.56 per serving).
- Three bags: $43.95 per bag ($1.46 per serving).
- Four bags: $40.95 per bag ($1.36 per serving).
On top of that, if you get a monthly subscription, you can save up to 20% plus free shipping.
- Made in GMP-certified facilities.
- Made in the US.
- Gluten-free, soy-free, and dairy-free.
- Offers a 90-day money-back guarantee.
- Doesn’t contain organic ingredients.
- Has a proprietary blend.
- Some ingredients might be underdosed.
- Only one flavor.
The final green supplement I recommend is Supergreen Tonik.
Supergreen Tonik is a green powder supplement with 38 ingredients. It is one of the few supplements that has a clear label, so you know what you are getting and how much.
The formula also comes in two flavors, berry and mint.
Supergreen Tonik’s ingredients are divided into three blends:
- Greens blend: Organic spirulina powder, organic collards leaf powder, organic spinach leaf powder, organic barley grass powder, organic chlorella, and organic horseradish tree leaf powder.
- Nootropic blend: Ashwagandha root extract, L-Theanine, ginkgo leaf powder, bacopa herb extract, bacopa leaf extract, Rhodiola root extract, and Rhodiola root extract.
- Immune blend: Dandelion leaf extract, garlic bulb extract, olive leaf extract, and black pepper fruit extract.
The remaining ingredients in the formula are added vitamins and minerals to help boost nutrient intake.
The green blend is made with all organic ingredients that can help reduce inflammation and boost the immune system.
Additionally, the nootropic blend contains great ingredients like Rhodiola, which is an adaptogen that can help reduce stress and fight fatigue.
Finally, the last blend contains ingredients that have antimicrobial and antiviral properties to help support the immune system.
One bottle of Supergreen Tonik costs $87, meaning you pay $2.85 per serving.
But, like the other green powder supplements, there are savings if you buy them in bulk.
If you purchase three bottles, the serving size comes down to $2.52, and if you buy six bottles, the serving size costs $2.09.
You can also get free shipping on orders above $99.
- Made with organic greens.
- Fully transparent label.
- Contains clinically proven doses.
- Third-party tested.
- Made in the US.
- Comes in two flavors: mint and berry.
- 365-day money-back guarantee.
- Doesn’t have a travel size.
- Only available online.
How much do green powders cost?
The price of greens powders depends on the quality of the ingredients, their dosage, the number of ingredients in the formula, and other benefits the company provides, like a money-back guarantee.
On average, green powder supplements might range from two to four dollars per serving. But, in most cases, you can opt for bulk or subscription savings to bring the price down.
Where To Buy Green Powders
You can buy green powder at your local grocery store, online retailers like Amazon, or at the company’s website.
I often recommend buying them directly from the company’s website since they give you a money-back guarantee. You can also be sure it’s an authentic product.
Are Green Powders a Waste of Money? Final Thoughts
So, if you ask me: “Are green powders a waste of money?” my answer is always no.
Getting enough fresh produce to feel your best is tough. And if you do any research on supplementation, you know whole foods are the best source of nutrients. Green powders address both of these challenges.
However, not all green powders are worth purchasing. You need to check the nutritional label and reviews carefully. With how popular greens powders have gotten, there are sure to be some low-quality options out there.
For those that don’t want to analyze the best green powder on their own, Athletic Greens, Primal Greens, and Supergreen Tonik are my picks.
Finally, remember that while green powder supplements can increase your fruit and vegetable intake, they don’t replace fresh produce. Make sure you have a healthy balance between fresh ingredients and supplements.
Have you tried a green powder for weight loss, general health, energy, or anything else? Leave a comment letting us know your favorite.
Frequently Asked Questions
What is green powder?
A green powder is a supplement made with different vegetables in powdered form. Besides vegetables, you can sometimes find fruits, adaptogens, nootropics, herbs, spices, mushrooms, and probiotics.
Are green powders a waste?
No, green powders are not a waste of money if you purchase a high-quality supplement. Choose the one that contains high-quality ingredients in the correct doses, as these will help boost your nutrient intake.
Is it OK to drink greens powder every day?
Yes, you can drink greens powders every day. But, don’t forget to consume the daily recommendation of fresh fruits and vegetables (at least 5-6 servings per day).
Do daily greens powder work?
Yes, it seems likely that green powders work. But, they rely on the ingredients and doses they come in. Also, remember that everyone can have a different reaction to supplement. What might work for you, might not work for others.
Can green powders replace vegetables?
No, green powders don’t replace fresh vegetables.
What is the purpose of greens powder?
Green powders can help increase your vegetable intake. They are an excellent way to improve overall wellness by supplying essential vitamins and minerals.
Do green powders help with bloating?
Yes, some green powders contain digestive aids, herbs, and probiotics that can have a positive effect on digestive issues like bloating.
Are green powders good for you?
Yes, green powders are good for you since they can provide essential vitamins and minerals.
Are green supplements worth it?
Yes, green powder supplements are worth it if they come with high-quality ingredients and with clinically-proven doses.