Are green smoothies good or bad for you?

We have the good, bad and the healthy benefits of green smoothies explained for you below. Sam runs through the good in green smoothies and also gives you the things to watch out for as well if you decide to add more greens into your week.

The topic of drinking green smoothies can be confusing.

Some people have raved about the benefits of having a green smoothie every day. 

Whilst others claim that green smoothies are not as healthy as they appear to be.

So which is it?

Are green smoothies good or bad for you?

Let’s have a look now at the facts and nutrition behind your favourite healthy green smoothie.

The good in green smoothies

There are plenty of upsides to you having leafy green smoothies.

Assuming that your smoothie includes at least one type of green vegetable, here's the good news for you.

Green smoothies are;

  • Full of antioxidants, which can benefit your overall health
  • A good plant-based source of essential vitamins and minerals
  • An excellent source of dietary fibre (depending on the ingredients)
  • Naturally hydrating, thanks to the combination of water and electrolytes
  • Filling, thanks to the combination of water and fibre

Green smoothies may also have other health benefits, depending on the food combinations you add.

It can be a quick snack for you or adapted into a full balanced meal by adding a source of protein and healthy fats.

So far, so good, what do you think?



Potential downsides of green smoothies

There is no such thing as a perfect food in the world or a perfect meal for you either.

So, not even green smoothies get ten out of ten sometimes.

And what is great for one person might be a bit of a problem for someone else.

So, with that in mind, let’s look at some potential downsides of having green smoothies for you.

Digestive upsets

Green smoothies can be a fantastic source of fibre for you.

But if your diet was previously low in fibre and you start adding daily smoothies, you might notice some tummy troubles.

You might start to get some gurgling, changes in your bowel movements or excess gas.

Most of the time, this is completely normal and it will disappear after a week or so, once your body adjusts to the food.

If you continue to experience symptoms, you should seek professional advice straight away.

Oxalates

Green smoothies often use vegetables that are a rich source of oxalates.

Oxalates aren’t a problem for most people, but some of you may be sensitive to them. 

There are a handful of case studies where people with a history of predisposing conditions combined with an excessive intake of oxalates can have serious health consequences.

However, to hit an excess intake of oxalates it takes several days on a green juicing cleanse, not from you having a green smoothie every morning! 

Are you worried about oxalates?

There is an easy fix for this problem for you.

If you're having your green smoothies daily, you just need to rotate your greens of choice.

So, make sure you have spinach one day, kale the next, then lettuce and then avocado as well. 

That was easy wasn't it!

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Nutrient imbalances

If you’re not taking care to balance your green smoothies, you might not get the nutrients ideal for a meal or your healthy snack.

Green smoothies will usually have carbohydrates and fibre for you, thanks to the greens in them.

But they may not be a good source of protein or healthy fats.

This is unless you add extra ingredients to your smoothie that includes these nutrients. 

There is a simple to fix for you to use.

If you want to make sure your smoothie is balanced, you need to add protein and healthy-fat rich ingredients. 

The verdict on green smoothies for you

Generally speaking, green smoothies are a great addition to a balanced diet.

They boost your intake of green vegetables and keep you hydrated. 

Some people might need to try different ingredient combinations, you could have a sensitive tummy or issues with oxalates.

If you’re not sure whether you have intolerances that could affect your green smoothie intake, you should seek the advice of a nutrition professional.

If you do want to get into green smoothies the easy way.

You could give the Super Greens Smoothie cubes a try, it's as easy as popping three cubes into your blender, adding in liquid, blend and enjoy.

Or you could have a look through the other green smoothie recipes on the Super Cubes recipe page.

 

Author | Samantha Gemmell
Sam is a Nutritionist, Health Writer and Wellness Speaker as well as being an Author for Super Cubes.
She is passionate about sharing her knowledge and helping people through their journey to health and wellness combining their mindset, nutrition and lifestyle. When she’s not helping people, she enjoys dancing in the rain and cuddling dogs.
Sometimes she does both at the same time.

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