Here are some frequently asked questions about green smoothies, health and nutrition. If you have a burning green smoothie question, head to the Incredible Smoothies Community forums and get answers.
Green Smoothies & Sugar/Fructose/Carbs/Calories
Automatically calculate your daily calorie needs to either lose, maintain or gain weight using the Tools page.
Sugar Concerns: Do Green Smoothies Contain Too Much Sugar And Is That A Diabetes Risk? Also: How to break your sugar addiction using green smoothies and Glycemic Index vs. Glycemic Load – why bananas and watermelon are actually low Glycemic.
Low Sugar/Low Fructose Smoothies: How Do I Make A Low Sugar/Low Fructose Green Smoothie?
Adding Sugar/Sweetener: Does Adding Sugar To Green Smoothies Negate The Health Benefits?
Candida: Green Smoothies For Candida
Green Smoothie Weight Loss Questions
Cellulite: Can Green Smoothies Fight Cellulite?
Need To Gain Weight: How Do I Gain Weight With Green Smoothies?
Green Smoothies & Food Combining
Are there any nutrient interactions or potential issues with mixing fruit and vegetables in a green smoothie?
Food Combining: This question is answered in my article titled about green smoothies and food combining.
Mixing Melons & Fruit: Here’s another article where I specifically address the myth about not blending watermelon with other fruits.
What I Eat When I Am Not Drinking Green Smoothies
I am frequently asked about what other foods I eat, besides green smoothies.
Detox & Cleansing
All fruits and vegetables facilitate detox. Be sure to use only organic ingredients in your smoothie recipes, avoid animal products, dried foods and additional sweeteners during your detox and find a workout routine that works for you. When it comes to making the “ultimate” detox green smoothies, we use dandelion greens and citrus such as orange, grapefruit,
lemon and lime.
Here’s some tips on how make a deliciously potent detox smoothie.
Read more about detox and cleansing in the Incredible Smoothies Green Smoothie Detox Section
Buying, Storing & Keeping Greens Fresh
How Long Will Green Smoothies Last In the Fridge: Green smoothies will stay fresh in the refrigerator for up to 24 hours, but you will lose some nutrients as it sits in the fridge. It will also not taste as fresh after the first day and water separation may occur. Some people make up a big batch of smoothie and drink it over 2 to 3 days. Personally, we don’t like the way smoothies taste after the first day. Fresh is best!
Organic vs. Non-Organic: Find out which fruits and vegetables you should always buy organic, and which ones you don’t have to.
Avoiding Genetically Modified/GMO: How to avoid genetically modified fruits and vegetables
Green Smoothie Nutrition & Health Concerns
Need Iron: I Need Iron-Rich Green Smoothie Ideas
Vitamin Overdose: Can you overdose on vitamins A and K from green smoothies?
Protein & Building Muscle: Protein Powders: What protein powders do you recommend? and What Can I Put In A Muscle-Building Green Smoothie?.
Nutrient Destruction: Does Blending Green Smoothies Destroy 90% Of Nutrients?
Gas & Bloating: Gas and Bloating After Drinking a Green Smoothie
Constipation: Why Am I Constipated After Drinking A Green Smoothie?
Thyroid & Kale/Raw Cruciferous Vegetables: Do Raw Kale and other Cruciferous (Brassica) Leafy Greens Cause Thyroid Problems?
Oxalic Acid/Oxalate: Is oxalic acid in spinach a health concern?
Blending & Smoothie Making Tips
Banana Substitutes: Banana-Free Smoothie Recipe Tips
Mango Substitutes: Is There A Substitute For Mangoes If I’m Allergic?
Wheatgrass: Can I Blend Wheatgrass In A Green Smoothie?
Blending Fruit Seeds: Is it okay to blend fruit seeds?
Blender & Juicer Recommendations
My green smoothie blender of choice is the Vitamix.
Can’t afford a Vitamix? Then check out the OmniBlend V blender.
Looking for juicer recommendations?
Rotating Greens: How And Why You Should Rotate Your Leafy Greens
Cold Weather: Cold weather green smoothie ideas
Bee Pollen: Benefits Of Bee Pollen In Green Smoothies
Do I have to put greens in my smoothies?
You don’t have to, but we highly recommend that you do! Greens are rich in calcium, iron, magnesium, vitamin A (as beta-carotene), C, K and many B vitamins. They are also rich in chlorophyll and antioxidants. Most people do
not eat enough leafy greens each day so blending them with fruit in a smoothie is the best way we have found to sneak more greens into our diet.
If adding leafy greens to a fruit smoothie just seems too alien of a concept, or even disgusting to you, try it out by adding just one small handful of fresh baby spinach to a fruit smoothie. You won’t taste it! Once you’ve taken this
first step, add another small handful and work up to 2 handfuls of leafy greens per smoothie. Before long, you’ll be blending an entire bunch of kale or dandelion greens!
Find out more about the health benefits of green smoothies.
How many green smoothies should I drink in a day?
I try to have at least two 32 ounce (1 liter) of green smoothie every day using an entire bunch of leafy greens in each smoothie. Most often, I drink up to 70 ounces of green smoothie in a day – one at breakfast and one at lunchtime. They are about 400 to 500 calories each.
If you are starting out, this will probably be too much for you. Start with a 16-ounce smoothie and work your way up to a quart. Then go from there. We don’t necessarily advocate or recommend a liquid, smoothie-based diet.
For us, it’s purely for convenience. You can get the same or similar nutrition by drinking one 16-ounce green smoothie in the morning and having a large salad or vegetable meal at lunch.
How much is a “bunch” of greens?
When I say a “bunch” of leafy greens, I am referring to how you would typically purchase them in a supermarket – such as several stalks of kale, dandelion or Swiss chard bundled together. Typically, there are about 4 to 5 cups leafy greens in a bunch when chopped.
A bunch can also be an entire large head of green/red leaf lettuce or romaine. I would consider 2 heads of baby bok choy or 3 heads of baby romaine lettuce as one bunch of greens.
When it comes to bagged or packaged salad mix, such as spring mix or fresh baby spinach, I consider a “bunch” to be 4 to 5 cups (or handfuls) of packed or chopped greens.
My general recommendation is to consume about one to two bunches or equivalent of leafy greens per day.
Why do your green smoothie recipes not have milk or yogurt?
None of my green smoothie recipes call for milk or yogurt because dairy is not necessary for making a rich, creamy smoothie. Dairy doesn’t facilitate detoxification, it contains hormones and promotes animal cruelty (as well as providing young calves for the inhumane veal industry). It is easy to make a thick, creamy smoothie using the right types of what I call “base” fruits like banana, mango and durian. Read Smoothie Making 101 to find out how to make a creamy smoothie using fruit as the base.
If you still want to use milk, try hemp, almond or rice milks, or make your own. You can find brands at most supermarkets that are fortified with calcium and vitamin D as well. They are much healthier alternatives to cow’s milk.
Is it okay to use frozen fruit in a smoothie?
We regularly freeze strawberries and bananas when they are on sale and we frequently buy frozen wild blueberries.
Freezing does destroy some of the nutrients but not enough to really worry about as long as you eat plenty of fresh, ripe, non-frozen and raw foods. We recommend that you not use too much frozen fruit. Drinking and eating ice cold (or steaming hot) foods can interfere with digestion or cause damage. It’s best to drink a green smoothie at room temperature, but if you do not like to, then add a few frozen berries to chill it slightly.
Which is better, green smoothies or green juices?
Both blending and juicing are a wonderful part of a healthy diet and lifestyle and both have their uses. Green juices and green smoothies are both nutrient-rich beverages but juices are missing the fiber of smoothies.
Because of this, juices are not a whole food. That is not to say that there is anything wrong with juicing. Use juices to nourish while skipping or delaying a meal, while sick or recovering from an illness or simply to boost your nutrition without the excess fiber.
Smoothies are perfect for getting more whole fruits and vegetables into your diet, using as snacks or meal replacements and for losing weight. You don’t need to choose between blending and juicing. Do them both!
Browse more green smoothie, health and nutrition questions.
Do you have a green smoothie question that isn’t answered here? Head over to the Incredible Smoothies Community and get answers!
Tracy Russell is the creator of the Green Smoothie Health & Weight Loss Program and founder of Incredible Smoothies. She is passionate about helping people improve their health with green smoothies and a whole foods lifestyle.