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Green supplements have become a must-have in the dietary, health and fitness supplement market, flourishing amid growing health consciousness among consumers worldwide. These supplements, which typically include a variety of powdered greens, promise an easy and efficient way to incorporate essential nutrients into one’s diet. However, with the rise in their popularity comes a crucial question: is this a money-making fad? Is it not better to just eat a more organic-based diet?

This article delves into the merits of green supplements vs an organic diet, providing insights to help you make an informed decision.

Greens Supplements in morning smoothie

What Are Green Supplements?

Green supplements are concentrated, powdered forms of various vegetables, grasses, algae, and herbs. Common ingredients include spirulina powder, chlorella, and wheat grass, known for their high nutrient profiles. 

These supplements are packed with vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants, advertised to offer benefits such as enhanced energy levels, improved immunity, and better overall health. They are particularly popular among those struggling to consume fresh greens daily. Incorporating this product into your diet can offer a convenient way to boost your nutrient intake and support your energy levels throughout the day.

Organic-Based Diet vs. Supplements

The term ‘organic’ pertains to the method of growing and processing agricultural products.

An organic-based diet emphasises consuming foods grown and processed without synthetic pesticides, fertilisers, genetically modified organisms (GMOs), or artificial additives. To be certified organic, foods must meet specific standards established by certification bodies, including not using synthetic pesticides, herbicides, or fertilisers.

The Benefits of an Organic-Based Diet

  • Reduced Chemical Exposure: Organic foods minimise exposure to potentially harmful pesticides and chemicals.
  • Higher Nutrient Density: Studies suggest organic produce may have higher levels of certain antioxidants and nutrients.
  • Environmental Benefits: Organic farming practices support soil health, reduce pollution, and promote biodiversity.
  • Better Taste: Many people find that organic fruits and vegetables have a superior taste due to their natural growing methods – but hey, this is completely subjective!

Benefits of Greens Superfood Supplement

Barely greens

Greens superfood supplements are designed to provide a concentrated source of essential nutrients derived from various green vegetables, algae, and other plant-based sources. These supplements can offer numerous health benefits, particularly for individuals struggling to meet their daily vegetable intake.

One of the best benefits of the Superfood Greens is their convenience. They provide a hassle-free way to increase nutrient intake, especially when fresh produce is unavailable or you’re busy.

Additional Benefits and the Contributing Ingredients:

Ingredient Key Nutrients Health Benefits
Spirulina Protein, B vitamins Detoxification, energy boost
Chlorella Chlorophyll, Iron Heavy metal detox, immune support
Wheatgrass Vitamins A, C, E Antioxidant protection, alkalising effects
Spinach Folate, Vitamin K Bone health, cardiovascular support
Kale Vitamins A, C, K Antioxidant protection, eye health
Green Tea EGCG, Caffeine Metabolism boost, heart health
Probiotics Lactobacillus strains Digestive health, immune support
Ashwagandha Withanolides Stress reduction, cognitive function
Collagen (often added) Type I and III Collagen protein powder Skin, hair and bone health

Choosing The Right Supplement

Before buying a greens supplement, examining a few things with a keen eye is crucial to ensure that you are getting your money’s worth.

1. Examine the Ingredient List

The ingredient list of green supplements is critical for evaluating their quality and safety:

  • Preference for Whole Food Sources: Supplements containing whole food ingredients, such as whole spirulina or kale, are generally more nutritionally stronger than extracts.
  • Avoiding Allergens and Fillers: Check for common allergens (e.g., soy, gluten, dairy) and avoid supplements with unnecessary fillers, artificial colours, or flavours that may not contribute to nutritional value.
  • Caution with Proprietary Blends: These blends can obscure the actual amounts of each ingredient, making it difficult to assess the supplement’s nutritional value.

2. Assess Brand Reputation

Evaluating the brand behind the supplement can provide insights into its quality:

  • Customer Reviews: Reviews from other users can provide practical insights into the supplement’s effectiveness and any potential side effects.
  • Transparency: Reliable brands are open about their sourcing, manufacturing processes, and testing protocols, which can be verified through third-party certifications and testing results.
  • Ethics and Sustainability: When purchasing supplements, choose brands committed to ethical practices and sustainability, such as those that support fair trade and environmental conservation, as they are more likely to offer high-quality and safe products.

3. Scrutinise Marketing Claims

In South Africa, health supplements are regulated similarly to medications under the jurisdiction of the South African Health Products Regulatory Authority (SAHPRA). This regulatory oversight ensures that concentrations and claims are properly guided and enforced.

  • Supported vs. Vague Claims: Effective supplements will have clear, evidence-based claims, such as “supports immune health,” with specific details on how the ingredients contribute to these benefits. Be wary of ambiguous promises like “detoxifies the body” without substantiated evidence.
  • Regulatory Oversight: Unlike in some regions, supplements in South Africa fall under strict SAHPRA regulations. Health supplements are scrutinised for their quality, safety, and intended use. SAHPRA requires every manufacturer, importer, and distributor to be licensed, ensuring that each product and its ingredients are thoroughly vetted. While general health benefits can be posted in product descriptions, they must include a disclaimer from SAHPRA: “The SAHPRA has not evaluated this unregistered medicine for its quality, safety, and intended use.”

Understanding these regulations helps consumers make informed decisions and trust that the supplements they choose meet rigorous safety and efficacy standards.

Purchase Organic Choice’s approved green supplements such as Master Greens, Organic Spirulina powderOrganic Chlorella tabletsBarleyLife powder and Moringa Powder.

Eating An Organic Diet:

Consuming organic whole foods effectively ensures our bodies receive the right nutrients without harmful fillers or allergens. But how do they compare to some of the points we addressed?

Ingredients:

  • Eating a diverse range of organic whole foods is a natural way to avoid any problems associated with fillers and allergens. It also offers clear information about the nutritional value of the food.
  • Organic whole foods usually contain a wider range of nutrients and beneficial components, such as fibre, which may not be present in supplements due to the manufacturing process.

Brand Reputation:

  • Organic food producers often follow strict regulations and practices to ensure product quality and environmental sustainability, which is directly reflected in the quality of your food.

Marketing Claims:

  • Whole foods do not come with marketing claims, but their nutritional value and health benefits are well-documented through extensive scientific research and dietary guidelines.

The Organic Choice

Green supplements offer a practical and efficient way to add to your nutrient intake. They are packed with vitamins, minerals, antioxidants, and other beneficial compounds that support various aspects of health, from boosting immunity to enhancing energy levels and promoting detoxification.

However, the convenience of green supplements should be weighed against the comprehensive benefits of consuming a diverse, organic-based diet. Organic foods provide a rich array of nutrients in their natural form, free from synthetic chemicals and additives. They support environmental sustainability, offer potentially higher nutrient densities, and are often preferred in taste and quality.

When choosing between green supplements and an organic diet, our team at Organic Choice suggests considering your personal health goals, lifestyle, and preferences. 

Ultimately, integrating green supplements into an organic-led diet might offer the best of both worlds, enhancing your diet’s nutritional profile while supporting sustainable and health-conscious choices.