The Power of “GREENS”
By Gavin Gillibrand
I’m sure most of you know how important “Greens” are to have in your daily diet but lets look at why-
Dark green leafy vegetables are, calorie for calorie, probably the most concentrated source of nutrition of any food. They are a rich source of minerals (including iron, calcium, potassium, and magnesium) and vitamins, including vitamins K, C, E, and many of the B vitamins.
They also provide a variety of phytonutrients including beta-carotene, lutein and zeaxanthin, which protect our cells from damage and our eyes from age-related problems, among many other effects. They even contain very small amounts of Omega 3 and you all know how important these essentials fats are to your health (as they are in abundance in the fish oil that we think everyone…. man, women, child and pet, should be taking).
They are also virtually calorie and carbohydrate free and are full of fibre meaning they have little or no impact on your blood sugar. They are the best friend of anyone looking to lose body fat, stay lean and keep on top of their all round general health. We SHOULD eat them in abundance every day but who, in reality has 4-6 portions of fruit and vegetables every single day?
Certainly not I and I would consider myself very healthy and more conscious than most when it comes to diet.
So what are the options? Well to start with you need a very good all round Multi vitamin and mineral supplement which I will look at in another post as I want to concentrate on greens today.
Enter “Powdered Greens”
Powdered greens are an all natural blend of nutrient-rich Green superfoods, sea vegetables and high energy herbal extracts fortified with high-ORAC antioxidant fruit extracts. There are many varieties and brands on the market but the brand we use and suggest you use is from a company called “Greens Plus”. One serving of Greens plus will provide you with more organic vitamins, essential minerals, live enzymes and antioxidants than 5 full servings of fresh fruits and vegetables and provides every vibrant colour in the dietary food spectrum.ORAC or Oxygen radical absorbance capacity is a method of measuring antioxidant capacity of various food items and certain spices, berries and legumes rated very highly. Greens plus delivers 19,518 units per serving and without going into too much scientific detail….that is extremely high.
So what does that mean to us and how will that help improve our health in so many ways?
Lets look at the benefits of taking greens on a daily basis-
Antioxidants like green tea extract, spirulina, barley grass powder, wheat grass powder, spinach powder and broccoli powder to name a few are the power house ingredients. These antioxidants neutralise free radicals (the loose cannon cells that damage our good cells) which get in the way of correct cell functioning and can lead to Cancer, Heart disease and premature ageing to name just a few. It’s also loaded with other Cancer fighting antioxidants such as vitamin C, E and Beta carotene.
2) Stimulates metabolism.
Greens will stimulate your metabolism, curb your appetite and help to reduce your body fat. Fantastic in water very early in the morning or add to your protein shake to get a metabolic boost and enrich your body with energy and vitality with ZERO stimulants.
3) PH balance of your blood.
Can help to restore the natural PH of your blood, especially if your diet is high in protein which can tend to make your blood acidic. Taking greens will help to maintain the correct alkalinity of your blood as it contains rich levels of alkaline forming minerals such as sodium, potassium and magnesium which protect against a disease promoting, acidic internal environment. It is said that if your body is in an alkaline PH state, that you will not get ill. Well I like the sound of that and it’s another good reason to go green.
4) Intestinal health.
Will improve digestive and intestinal health as it contains added digestive enzymes and probiotics. Do you ever get indigestion? Do you ever take antacid tablets? Well they will be a thing of the past if you get your greens in! Plus your body will thank you for it by functioning much better and obtaining the goodness out of what you eat.You are not so much what you eat, but what you digest from what you eat!
5) Sugar FREE.
Its free of sugar, sugar alcohol and artificial sweeteners and its a very quick, convenient way to get your “5 a day”.
6) Reduction of cortisol post workout.
Taken in a post workout shake, Greens will help to reduce cortisol levels which are inevitably raised when doing any exercise. The objective is to get these levels back down as fast as possible so you can get the important part of recovery and restocking your energy stores under-way asap.Testosterone is also raised as cortisol levels drop (cortisol impedes testosterone production) making greens a vital part of your post workout nutrition.
I personally have been taking greens daily for about 4 years now and have found them invaluable. I am more alert and awake or rather I don’t feel AS alert if I miss it. I like to take it twice per day, once with water first thing in the morning and then a second serving in my protein shake after a workout (see point 6 above) and I totally swear by it.I also found that I crave carbohydrates MUCH LESS when taking Greens on a regular basis which makes it far easier to lead a low carb lifestyle if the temptation just isn’t there.
So there we have a summary of the benefits of taking a good greens supplement on a daily basis.
Gavin @ Ultimate City Fitness
Gavin Gillibrand BSc. Fat loss and Body Transformation Expert in the City of London, UK
Please visit our website http://ultimatecityfitness.com for more great articles like this on the ever changing world of health & fitness.