The value of drinking your fruits and vegetables cannot be underestimated. It’s a great way to get all the supplements you need for a healthy lifestyle, helping you to easily fit in those 5-a-day without even thinking about it.
They’re great for pre and post workout drinks too, which is why we’ve opened our brand new juice bar at the club! One of our favourites, and one of the best for your body, is the green smoothie.
It’s a great way to get all the benefits of those dark leafy greens (like kale and spinach), which are full of vitamins, minerals and nutrients. It’s also a good source of alkalinity, which is needed to balance out the acidity common in most diets. Green juices can be sweetened with fruit, or infused with lemon and ginger for a sharper taste.
But when is the best time to have these drinks? Should it be morning or evening? With a meal or instead of one? Here are our tips to get the most benefit from your green juice.
Avoid drinking with meals
The main purpose of drinking green juice is to get all the nutritional benefits as quickly as possible. When you have a meal at the same time, your stomach will have other contents it needs to digest. That means the absorption of the nutrients will be delayed.
It may also mean you don’t get the full benefit of every single nutrient in the juice either. As there’s other food and liquid in your stomach, some of the nutrients may get consumed by the bacteria in your gut alongside the other contents, rather than getting absorbed into your blood stream.
Don’t replace dinner
Because these drinks contain all the calories, nutrients and protein (especially if you have add-ins) that you need, many of us choose to use them as a meal replacement. For breakfast and lunch, they are quick, easy and can curb your hunger until your next meal.
But for dinner, green drinks can be a little more problematic as a meal replacement. Willpower wise, dinner is often the hardest meal to skip, especially if you enjoy going out with friends and family. Even just sitting and sharing a meal at home can be a very important part of the day for many families.
You may also have eaten a full, heavy meal at lunch, if you’re having a juice drink for dinner, which means that your stomach and gut could still be digesting that food. This will hold up the digestion of your green smoothie, and could lead to bloating or gas.
Breakfast is best
Drinking your green juice on an empty stomach is therefore the best option, and there’s no better time to do it than first thing in the morning, at least an hour before or after a coffee too, to avoid any acidic interaction with the juice.
It’s the best way to absorb all the nutrients each drink contains, and it’s also the best time to drink one as a meal replacement. Breakfast can often be an unhealthy meal – toast, pastries, cereal – so a gulp of green juice instead gives you all the calories you need, and the sweetness of added fruits should stave off any cravings for snacks until lunchtime!
Want to try one for yourself? Come on down to our brand new juice bar!