Nutrition & Dieting/Smoothie Supplements
QUESTION: Hello, I'm a research junkie so, I would like one more opinion to compare answers. I never ate breakfast, so I decided to start making smoothies so I could have something in my system. I would make them with fruit, a green vegetable, coconut water, yogurt and alternate between Chia seeds and Flax seeds. If I could make them healthier using more supplements, then I'd like to buy more, but there are so many out there(spirulina, chlorella, maca, msm, camu camu, acai berries, bee pollen powder etc) and they're all expensive! My questions are:
1.) Are there a couple that I could buy that have the same benefits to where I don't have to buy ALL of them?
2.) I hear the quality of some are dangerous and others are pointless. Will you recommend a safe company that you trust?
3.) Are organic powders really "organic" and are they really a better choice?
There's just too much research out there to make a sound decision! Someone told me that I'll be fine with just flax seeds and a protein, which sounds easy and great to me! What are your thoughts? Thank you so much for your help!
ANSWER: Hi CJ
Good job on starting to eat breakfast. Look at it this way, after sleeping 8 hours your body has been fasting. It is literally feeding on its own muscle tissue by the time you wake. That whole breakfast is the most important meal isn't just some catchy marketing claim.
I bet you feel better throughout the day having eaten in the morning.
To address your questions.
1. You can add all those things you mentioned, but they are not all necessary. Look at it this way. You can have a car to get you from A to B and back. Or you can get leather seats, GPS, a super charged engine, racing tires, custom exhaust, etc.
The basic car still serves its purpose, the extras just make the ride easier, more efficient, or more comfortable.
If you can afford them all then go ahead, but in reality you don't need them.
If you required me to choose from the list I'd tell you to go with spirulina, acai, and bee pollen. As an aside, legend has it that Bruce Lee was a big fan of bee pollen.
2. I wouldn't call them dangerous as much as pointless. Most if not all will serve their purpose. If you buy a lot of the Vitamin Shoppe (just an example) brand stuff then they're good products, but not necessary.
Companies I trust though are
-Bodybuilding.com (store/site brand)
-Vitamin Shoppe (the store brand)
-Prosource.net (the store/site brand)
3. Organic is the big "IT" word in marketing these days. In reality the only things really necessary to judge by the organic label are thin skinned fruits (berries, apples, etc.)
Bananas and oranges for example have thick skin, thus it protects the fruit, and you don't eat the skin like you do with grapes or strawberries.
Personally I can't afford organic stuff and don't buy it. But I'd only apply concern to the produce if I was to afford/buy it. With stuff like supplement powders, shampoo, etc. just buy what works best for you. They even have organic clothing these days. Maybe I should put a fancy catch word on a product and become a millionaire. This advice is organic!
Here are some things that are cost effective and great to add to shakes.
-Amino acids (specifically BCAAs)
Finally to cover all bases take a multivitamin. I recommend Vita-Jym (bodybuilding.com) or Performaxx from Optimum Nutrition
---------- FOLLOW-UP ----------
QUESTION: Have you heard of nuts.com? They have everything I listed. If you've heard of them, your thoughts on purchasing from them? I got my flax and chia seeds from them.
Hi CJ, no I have not heard of them but did check out the site. As I am not versed in chia seeds or their price (I do know about buying flax) it looks like they are giving you a decent deal. It seems the going rate is 12-14 dollars a pound so at $8.99 a pound that's a deal. I actually just saw Chia seed as Sam's Club. Not sure of the price point though.
Now that you mention flax seed a thought comes to mind that I want to share.
The body is not able to digest flax seed in its whole form. I know it sounds not so eloquent, but think of how the body digests corn.
You must mill or grind the whole flax seed to get the benefit from it, otherwise it will just pass through the body.
Sorry there is not a nicer way to put that. If you buy whole seed its as easy as throwing it in the blender and running it until it becomes a powder.
And to conclude with some obscure facts, flax seed can replace eggs in some recipes and act as a binding agent.