This is where we explain why we take greens powder (because you may have noticed that Greenz is all about greens supplements and wondered why!). A lot could be said about the vitamins and minerals and more but we’ll try to stick to the single main reason for us.
Because they’re Green and Green means Chlorophyll
The green colour in plants (and thus, greens powder) comes from a group of pigments called chlorophyll. Chlorophyll is essential for photosynthesis, which is the process by which plants convert light energy from the sun into chemical energy that they use to fuel their growth and other metabolic processes. Chlorophyll absorbs light in the blue and red parts of the electromagnetic spectrum, but reflects and transmits light in the green part of the spectrum, giving plants their characteristic green colour.
Chlorophyll is not Digestible
Chlorophyll is not digested by humans, as humans lack the necessary enzymes to break down the molecule. However, research suggests that chlorophyll has significant health benefits when consumed orally, such as reducing body odour and promoting healthy digestion. In these cases, chlorophyll is believed to act as a prebiotic, providing nourishment for beneficial gut bacteria.
Chlorophyll (green colour) is a Signal of “Goodness”
In addition to being one itself, chlorophyll (the green colour) is a signal which indicates the probable presence of a whole lot of other prebiotics. A prebiotic is a type of fibre-rich food that feeds and promotes the growth of beneficial bacteria in the gut.
Prebiotics are not digested by the human body but are fermented by the beneficial bacteria in the colon, leading to the production of short-chain fatty acids (SCFAs) which have various health benefits. Examples of prebiotic foods include whole grains, onions, garlic, leeks, asparagus, bananas, and artichokes. Prebiotics are often used in conjunction with probiotics, which are live bacteria that colonize the gut and provide health benefits.
Together, prebiotics and probiotics are referred to as synbiotics.
Listen to Your Gut
Greens feed your gut bacteria. The human gut contains trillions of bacteria, collectively known as the gut microbiota or gut flora. These bacteria play a crucial role in maintaining our health and well-being by helping with digestion, synthesizing essential vitamins, regulating the immune system, and preventing harmful bacteria from taking over.
Your Gut Health is Connected to Everything
In addition to these essential functions, recent research has also linked the gut microbiota to various aspects of our overall health, including mental health, metabolic disorders, and autoimmune diseases.
The bacteria in our gut come from various sources, including our mothers during birth, the environment we live in, and the foods we eat. Some of the most common bacteria in the gut belong to the Firmicutes and Bacteroidetes phyla, which are known to be involved in the breakdown of complex carbohydrates and the synthesis of short-chain fatty acids that help nourish the gut lining.
Poor Gut Health is Bad News
Flushing out all of the bacteria from your gut and maintaining a sterile gut would be a difficult and potentially dangerous process. The human gut microbiota plays a vital role in maintaining our overall health, and having a completely sterile gut could lead to a range of negative consequences.
The gut microbiota performs a number of important functions, including aiding in digestion, supporting the immune system, producing vitamins and other nutrients, and helping to regulate mood and behaviour. Without these helpful bacteria, our bodies may struggle to perform these functions optimally, leading to a range of health problems.
Unhealthy Gut equals Unhappy You
Some of the potential consequences of having a sterile gut include an increased risk of infections, a weakened immune system, difficulty digesting food, and nutritional deficiencies. Additionally, research has suggested that a disrupted gut microbiota may contribute to the development of chronic diseases such as inflammatory bowel disease, obesity, and even mental health disorders.
Greens Supplements Help!
After you realise the importance of a healthy gut, it is natural to think of ways to improve the bacteria balance in your gut. According to scientific research (see the section below this one), there are several things you can do to promote a healthy gut microbiome:
- Eat a diverse range of plant-based foods: Eating a variety of fruits, vegetables, whole grains, and legumes can provide the gut with a range of beneficial nutrients that support the growth of healthy bacteria.
- Avoid processed foods: Processed foods are often low in nutrients and high in sugar, salt, and unhealthy fats, which can disrupt the balance of bacteria in the gut.
- Consume fermented foods: Fermented foods like yogurt, kefir, kimchi, and sauerkraut contain live bacteria that can help improve the diversity and quantity of gut bacteria.
- Stay hydrated: Drinking enough water is essential for maintaining a healthy gut. It helps to keep food moving through the digestive system and prevent constipation, which can lead to an imbalance of gut bacteria.
- Manage stress: Chronic stress can negatively impact the gut microbiome. Practicing relaxation techniques like meditation, deep breathing, or yoga can help manage stress levels and improve gut health.
- Get enough sleep: Poor sleep can also affect the gut microbiome. Aim for 7-8 hours of quality sleep each night to support gut health.
- Consider taking a probiotic or prebiotic supplement: Probiotics are live bacteria that can help populate the gut with beneficial bacteria. Prebiotics are non-digestible fibers that provide food for the healthy bacteria already present in the gut. Consult with a healthcare professional before taking any supplements.
You’ll notice that taking a daily Greens powder supplement with water takes care of, or supports, points 1, 2, 4, and 7. Its also kind of connected to point 5, because the act of faithfully drinking a big glass of green water every day has a sort of meditative quality to us.
So, that’s why we take greens powder supplements. Oh, and they work!
There have been numerous peer-reviewed studies linking the gut microbiome to beneficial health outcomes. Here are some examples:
- “Gut microbiota and health: an update” published in the journal Food and Function in 2021. This review article discusses the role of gut microbiota in maintaining health and preventing diseases such as obesity, type 2 diabetes, and inflammatory bowel disease.
- “Gut Microbiome and Chronic Kidney Disease: New Insights into Therapeutic Strategies” published in the journal International Journal of Molecular Sciences in 2021. This review article discusses the role of gut microbiota in chronic kidney disease and the potential therapeutic strategies that target the gut microbiome.
- “Gut microbiota, short-chain fatty acids, and obesity across the epidemiologic transition: the METS-Microbiome study” published in the journal JCI Insight in 2020. This study examines the association between gut microbiota, short-chain fatty acids, and obesity in a population-based study across different countries.
- “Gut Microbiome and Cardiovascular Disease” published in the journal Circulation Research in 2020. This review article discusses the role of gut microbiota in cardiovascular disease and the potential therapeutic strategies that target the gut microbiome.
- “Gut Microbiota and Brain Function: An Evolving Field in Neuroscience” published in the journal Nutrients in 2020. This review article discusses the bidirectional communication between gut microbiota and the brain and its potential implications for brain function and behavior.