Children sneak it to the dog, stuff it in the couch and are forced to eat it in pot pies. Now vegetables are blended up into smoothies.
Spinach, kale and wheatgrass in smoothies are becoming more and more popular. People and experts are at a standstill as to deciding whether the new trend is a healthier option or simply a tasty treat.
Dr. Lora Brown, a professor in the nutrition, dietetics and life sciences at BYU, sees pros to green smoothies.
“If that is how people are consuming ingredients that they would otherwise not consume, it could be healthy,” Brown said. “If they are adding sugar or a sweetner, then you are getting extra calories.”
Brown explained why she has a mediocre opinion of green smoothies.
“There’s nothing magical,” Brown said. “It doesn’t make it more nutritious.”
Ben Johns, an industrial design major, has a different opinion.
“The majority of them are healthy,” Johns said.
Nicholas Underwood, a freshman at BYU majoring in archeology, works at Jamba Juice and said he’s noticed more people getting veggie smoothies.
“I’ve seen an increase in wheatgrass shots,” Underwood said. “Our green smoothie isn’t quite as popular as the orange and carrot smoothie.”
The orange and carrot smoothie isn’t green in color, but it puts vegetables in smoothies the same way a spinach smoothie does. Underwood also noted the particular palate necessary for these “green” smoothies.
“If you really like vegetables, then these smoothies are perfect for you,” Underwood said.
Anna MacArthur, a freshman studying dietetics, gave a reason for why students go for smoothies.
“A lot of people think they are getting a healthier option, but it’s really just frozen yogurt,” MacArthur said.
MacArthur said she believes that frozen yogurt in smoothies isn’t particularly healthy, so she gave some advice for students who eat smoothies regularly.
“Read the menus,” MacArthur said. “Really look at what’s in the smoothie. Know where your calories are coming from.”
Jacob Michael, a sophomore from Los Angeles, shared his opinion on green smoothies.
“I think it’s cool that you want to be healthy,” Michael said. “But ultimately, I think people drink smoothies not to be healthy but to get their daily fix, to get their sugar intake.”
He also explained why he thinks green smoothies have become so popular.
“I don’t know if it will actually make them healthy, but it’ll make them think they are being healthy,” Michael said. “It’ll make them feel healthier.”
Michael stressed the importance of being healthy even though he isn’t a fan of spinach and kale in his smoothies.
“It’s important; it’s the Word of Wisdom,” Michael said. “Our bodies are temples, and we have to respect our bodies and be healthy, but I don’t know if putting grass in smoothies is the way.”
Izzat Mukattash, a sophomore from Jordan, sees benefits to putting vegetables in smoothies.
“For college students, it’s good because they don’t get enough nutrition during the week,” Mukattash said. “When you put green into your smoothie, the more green you get into your system, the better. My roommate does green smoothies every morning. I was surprised, but it’s actually a good idea.”
Mukattash said he lives a busy life, like many other college students, and often finds himself putting food on the back burner until his stomach growls.
“I’m too busy with school, I forget to eat,” Mukattash said. “Eat regular meals. You make bad decisions when you are hungry.”
Overall, Mukattash said it comes down to preference.
“It’s good for college students, not so good if you want to enjoy your smoothie,” Mukattash said. “I don’t think it’s enjoyable if it’s green.”