I have a short list of supplements which I think are great for pretty much any athlete. The list includes fish oil, creatine, and greens. I feel as if greens get the least attention, but for most athletes striving to dial in their dieting plan, greens might be just the right supplement to balance out their nutrition. A greens supplement is a supplement which has all the nutrients and benefits of greens and other super-foods packed into it. Basically, it is superfoods in a powdered form. Athletics Greens is an example of a greens supplement. When I initially found out about Athletic Greens, I decided to visit their website, which is packed with plenty of great nutritional information, testimonials and FAQ’s. I will break this whole Athletic Green supplement review down into the following categories:
- What is Athletics Greens?
- Taste and Flavor
- How does Athletic Greens Work?
- Results and Feel
- Cost US$
- Overall Conclusion
Athletic Greens is not just a greens supplement – it is a whole foods supplement. This means that it isn’t just made up of food which has been ground into powder and then stuffed into capsules. Don’t get me wrong – it’s in powder form but it isn’t in capsule form. It is instead just in powder form. Why is it just a powder and not a tablet or a capsule? The heat process employed to make capsules and tablets can actually destroy the probiotics as well as other nutrients needed by your body. Did you know that you most likely pee away most of the tablets which you absorb? If your supplement is in form of a capsule, about 60% or more will go straight down the toilet. The body absorbs very little of it and so if you are not getting the results you need from your supplement, that is probably why.
Taste and Flavor
From the information I had gathered, I decided to give it a shot and ordered Athletic Greens supplement. The product arrived within a few days and I was anxious to first try it out. I was a bit let down though that there was no measuring spoon, but this wasn’t a big deal for me as I have them all over the place. I then scooped up a heaping tablespoon of the green powder stuff into a glass of water and stirred and that was it. You can mix the supplement up with milk or juice. It literally took me around 30 seconds to make and consume and it was done. Surprisingly, it was pretty tasty and refreshing, and with a sweet aftertaste. The flavor of greens drinks is always a tossup, with some being hard to stomach. Plenty of green juices available out there on the market usually leave a very bitter taste in your mouth, but this was not the case with this product. Athletic Greens is one of the good ones.
The flavor of greenery is pleasant and mild, and is complemented by a light sweetness given by some of the added fruits, vegetables, stevia and vanilla. Speaking of stevia, the packaging alleges that there are no sweeteners in the supplement, which is a bit confusing. Stevia is listed in the herb section, because it considered an herbal extract, but it’s primarily used as a sweetener. While such can be forgiven, it does make me speculate what else might be worded in an ambiguous way.
Dubbed the All-In-One Super-food For Active People, this supplement contains 76 natural ingredients which consist of nutrient dense raw super-food complex, including natural extracts, wheatgrass, herbs & antioxidants and digestive enzyme & super-mushroom complex. In addition there is goji berry, ginseng, a number of plant extracts (most notable being extracts of grape seed), and co-enzyme Q10 (which is fairly expensive). Athletic Greens can be used as a multimineral or multivitamin as well as a greens supplement, and offers several vitamins and minerals. One serving does provide the full daily value of zinc, nearly as much vitamin A, as well as much or more of biotin, vitamins C, E and many of the B-vitamins. This includes 160% of the daily nutrition value of B6, an important co-factor in the production of numerous neurotransmitters, and almost 500% of the daily nutrition value of B12, important for brain health. For vegans, good B12 sources can be hard to come by, therefore Athletic Greens is an excellent alternative for vegan athletes. And for all you organic enthusiast, including myself, it contains NASAA-certified organic ingredients. We all hate pesticides and they’re just so toxic to us.
Athletic Greens Ingredient Breakdown
Athletic Greens divides these ingredients into the following 4 major classes:
- Superfoods: These are the herbs and greens that makeup a bulk of the overall ingredients. These include organic spirulina, organic apple powder, lecithin, alfalfa powder, barley leaf, wheatgrass, chlorella, bilberry fresh fruit extract, pineapple fresh fruit concentrate, broccoli flower powder, carrot root and more. They are included for nutrients and alkalinity. The latter is, certainly, important for athletes to aid in maintaining the pH of their bodies, principally in those who don’t consume enough green vegetables in their diet plans.
- Herbs and Antioxidants: This group of super-foods is the second most plentiful in the powder. It has a great ORAC-value of 5000. Herbs and antioxidants are included for nutrients and high antioxidant levels. This group includes citrus bioflavonoids (ideal antioxidants for athletes), pea protein, and coQ-10, among other ingredients.
- Probiotics: There are also 3.6 billion count each of bifidobacterium bifidum and lactobacillus acidophilus included Athletic Greens, 2 important intestinal microflora species. This helps clear out your digestive system.
- Digestive enzymes and Mushrooms: This group includes several herbs that are high in digestive enzymes, minerals like zinc, chromium, vanadium, selenium and magnesium that help with supporting synthesis of protein to support your muscle growth in addition to shiitake and reishi mushrooms. Minerals play a vital role in maintaining healthy levels of hormone to regulating the immune system.
Athletic Greens contains both cocoa extract and green tea extract, but since they are standardized for content of antioxidant they don’t contribute much caffeine. I learned this through asking their support department, which was quite helpful, informative, and prompt in their reply.
There are 75 whole food ingredients in this supplement. They are first freeze dried, then cold pressed into a powder. That is how the nutrients stay intact. You take 1 tablespoon in a glass of water daily. If you are really active, like a bodybuilder, an athlete, or just someone who is perpetually outside hiking and enjoying nature, you can take 2 – one in the morning and another in the afternoon. You are absorbing these nutrients directly. There is no capsule in the way, therefore it goes straight via your digestive system. That means you straight away obtain the full impact of all of the healthy ingredients and the added advantage of probiotics which help your digestive system. It does not take long to begin working, and most people report seeing an instant difference within the first few hours of taking it.
Results and Feel
I took Athletic Greens for a period 10 days, off the slow-carb diet. I did not want the benefits of this diet to seep into my results. However, note that such a product really is also for the long-term health benefits. The difference for this product was very obvious from day 3. I started noticing more energy, was much more alert and could last longer when exercising. Besides, I could wake up earlier with much less lethargy even on a normal diet with plenty of carbs. Digestion has improved as well and this is probably due to the pro-biotics and pre-biotics.
Good greens supplements don’t come cheap, averaging about $1 per serving in my opinion, however, they are still worth it. AG has a price tag which would even make its high priced competitors flush, coming in at $4.23 per serving. At AthleticGreens.com, it’s available for $127 for 30 servings. For athletes and active individuals, whom the product is marketed to, this company recommends 2 servings a day, which would last 2 weeks and one day. For athletes, that means that the price tag goes up to more than $8 per serving. For that same price, I can invest in a local CSA, pay somebody to dehydrate the vegetables for me, and yet save money. Shipping isn’t included, so be prepared to spend at least $8 more, depending upon the option you choose.
Athletic Greens is all-in-all a great solid greens product with a good flavor that supports energy production, digestive health, balanced nutritional intake, and alkalinity to your diet. A greens supplement such as this is a good addition to any regimen by an athlete, but is particularly important for those not consuming adequate fruits and vegetables. From a pure health benefit point-of-view it’s one of the better green drinks we have reviewed. And moreover, it tastes great. I am pleased to recommend not missing out on such an important health aspect, but the price point is somewhat well beyond what most are willing to pay. Athletic Greens is otherwise a no-brainer, particularly when you can try it for 60-days and get a refund in case you are not happy. Remember to get their monthly auto-refill program (aka auto-ship) for a monthly savings of $20.
So I’d like to give 5 stars out of 5 to it because if money is not an issue for you, it’s one of the best greens supplements on the market at the moment!