by Will Grumke August 20, 2019 7 min read
You may have heard of greens powders on social media or from your favorite health influencers, but if you're wondering, "are greens good for you?", what they are, how they work, or if the results other people claim to see are real ... we've got all the answers here for you.
We'll start by discussing why green vegetables are important in the first place.
We all know that vegetables are a healthy, essential part of everyone’s diet. Or at least they should be. But why?
The answer comes down to three things.
Foods can either be nutrient-dense, energy-dense, or both. Nutrient-dense foods include anything that has a lot of nutrients compared to calories. Energy-dense foods are the opposite. They have plenty of calories, but not a lot of nutrients. Nutrient-dense foods include things like fruits and vegetables while energy-dense foods include beer and baked goods.
One of the reasons why vegetables are so great is because they’re nature’s multivitamin. Most of the vitamins and minerals you need can be found in different kinds of veggies.
Additionally, you can eat a ton of veggies without adding hardly any calories to your diet. This helps you feel full all day long and avoid mindless snacking or overeating. Which can help you stay lean, lose weight, or avoid packing on unwanted pounds while getting in quality nutrients your body needs.
Vegetables are also packed with antioxidants and digestive enzymes. These different materials may not be vitamins and minerals exactly, but they play an important role in your health and well being. Helping to protect your body from free radical damage as well as breaking down the food you eat more effectively so you can absorb and use more of the nutrients! Most of the vitamins and minerals your body needs can be sources from eating a wide variety of veggies.
Performance depends on nutrition. That’s true in the weight room and in your stomach. Most leafy green veggies are great for digestion because of the fiber they contain. Fiber helps improve your overall digestive health and keeps you regular. The digestive enzymes and probiotics help digestion too as they help your body more efficiently break down its food, allowing you to get even more nutrition out of your veggies.
Veggies and green fruits are great for nutrition. We’ve already mentioned that earlier. But we haven’t gotten into the specific vitamins and minerals you can get from consuming them in proper amounts.
Here are some of the most common vitamins and minerals you’ll find in your green veggies and fruits, and in an excellent greens supplement...
Vitamin K – Vitamin K is an important vitamin that plays a role in your body’s ability to clot blood and regulate blood calcium levels. It also plays a role in the metabolism of your bones.
Folate (folic acid) – Folate is a specific type of B-vitamin. It’s especially important during pregnancy because it helps your body produce DNA and other genetic material. Without folate, your cells can’t divide and you have a harder time functioning, much less healing. Since folate can be hard to come by, a lot of food companies fortify their foods with folate. But eating plenty of fruits and veggies, as well as using a greens supplement or essential nutrient pack can help ensure you are getting enough.
Vitamin C – Vitamin C is also known as ascorbic acid. It plays a part in hundreds of operations inside the body. Vitamin C is a strong antioxidant that can strengthen your body’s natural defenses. It’s a water-soluble vitamin that’s responsible for healing oxidative stress damage caused by free radicals. It works wonderfully when combined with antioxidants.
Vitamin C can also help with iron absorption and strengthening your immune system.
Potassium – Potassium is a mineral. It is also an electrolyte. Potassium is important because it helps regulate fluid levels and balance in the body. It also manages nerve signals to the brains as well as muscle contractions.
Vitamin A – Vitamin A plays an important role in your ability to see normally. It’s also an important element of a healthy immune system It even plays a role in reproduction. Vitamin A is also used by the heart, lungs, kidneys and other organs. It helps make sure that all of these important organ systems are working how they should.
Of course, there are so many other vitamins and minerals you can get out of veggies and green fruits. Frankly, almost everything you need from a micronutrient perspective you can get from vegetables. But the problem most people run into is eating a wide enough range of fruits and vegetables, and enough of them, to get all the nutrients your body actually needs for proper function!
This is why adding in a daily essential nutrient pack is one of the best things you can do to ensure your body has its foundational requirement of nutrients met. While also still eating a diet rich in vegetables!
Now, if you’re like most people, you probably don’t eat enough vegetables. If you’re looking for some extra ways to include more vegetables in your diet, try any or all of the following three suggestions.
It’s always easier to eat foods that taste good than it is to eat foods that taste bad. The fact is, so many people are never taught how to properly cook our veggies.
Try roasting your veggies instead of boiling, blanching, or steaming them. Roasted veggies taste amazing. Personally, I have an air fryer that I use to cook veggies because it’s easy to use, easy to clean, and the vegetables taste great!
Also, if you’re making a salad, use multiple greens. Use spinach, lettuce, arugula, kale, and maybe some basil or another herb. Cut your salad greens into small pieces, almost shredding them. The smaller the pieces are, the more variety you’ll get in every bite.
Making small efforts like these will instantly improve the taste of veggies.
Another easy way to get more greens into your diet is through a healthy, green smoothie. Most people drink green smoothies for breakfast, but you could have one whenever you wanted. There are hundreds of smoothie recipes out there. We’ve even posted some ourselves. Just try a couple of recipes until you’ve found your favorite.
If you can find a delicious, green smoothie that you like, you can increase your veggie intake no problem.
Warning though… many smooth recipes are jam-packed with sugar and calories from the juices, fruits, and other ingredients in them besides greens. So be aware of that when picking which one to use. Because even though it is “healthy” … you still need to make sure the smoothie fits inside your nutrition plan.
They are also typically low in protein. If that’s the case, adding a high-quality protein powder to your smoothie is a great idea!
Greens supplements are another great way to increase your vegetable intake. In some cases, they can have a better nutrient profile than just going out and trying to eat a bunch of veggies. This is because Greens supplements typically contain greens you don’t normally eat like spirulina, alfalfa sprouts, and more!
Greens supplements also take less time to prepare than a smoothie…. plus should be much lower in calories and macros while still having all the nutritional benefit, if not more! Plus, they cost less than buying all the fruits, vegetables, and ingredients you would otherwise need to make a smoothie every day.
Let’s talk about greens supplements a little bit more.
There are many greens supplements on the market today. For the most part, Greens supplements are dehydrated, processed fruits and vegetables that are ground into a powder. You simply take a scoop or two and mix it into a glass of water, protein, or juice.
Once it’s mixed, you drink it like you would anything else. You can even add a couple of scoops of greens to your green smoothie to supercharge your morning with even more nutrients!
Greens supplements are great because a glass of greens is like consuming a diverse profile of veggies and nutrients all at once.
For example,a serving of 1st Phorm’s Opti-Greens 50 formula gives you the benefits of eating 11+ servings of vegetables along with a blend of superfoods, probiotics, and digestive enzymes!
This boost of nutrients from Opti-Greens 50 will help detoxify your body, improve your digestion, help reduce bloating, balance pH levels, boost natural energy levels, and so much more! …. And that’s not surprising when you look at all of the fruits and veggies that go into a single serving of Opti-Greens 50.
So while greens supplements are great, especially for those who live an active/busy life and want to look and feel their best… they do not replace the need to eat vegetables.
Greens supplements help supplement in more nutrients and different nutrients you are not getting from your daily nutrition plan.
If you’re looking to increase your vegetable intake, one of the easiest ways to do so is with a greens supplement.
And when it comes to Greens supplements… Opti-Greens 50 is a precisely formulated greens powder that is packed with 50 hand-chosen ingredients to give you the best results.
The remarkable blend includes low temperature processed 100% organic grasses, non-GMO, non-synthetic botanical superfoods, phytonutrients, digestive enzymes, and probioticsso your body can actually absorb and use the nutrients effectively!
Also, 100% of the greens ingredients are all grown and manufactured in the USA. But I think a really big benefit, especially if you have tried other greens supplements before, Opti-Greens 50 actually tastes good!
You can’t say that about all greens supplements.
So if you want to try adding greens to your diet, give Opti-Greens 50 a chance. When you do you’ll start noticing a difference in how you feel very quickly!
If you have any questions about Greens, nutrition in general, or any other aspect of your health and fitness lifestyle - please don’t hesitate to send us an email at CustomerService@1stPhorm.com or give us a call at 1-800-409-9732, Monday through Friday, 6am to 10pm.
NASM Certified Personal Trainer, NASM Certified Nutrition Coach, NASM Certified Fitness Nutrition Specialist, NASM Certified Weight Loss Specialist, NASM Certified Behavioral Change Specialist, NASM VCS Virtual Coaching Specialist, CrossFit Level 1 Trainer