If you’re looking to incorporate more fruits and vegetables into your diet, green smoothies can be a great option. However, if you’re not accustomed to consuming them, you may wonder about potential side effects. In this article, we’ll examine five prevalent side effects that may arise as a result of consuming green smoothies regularly as part of a detox program.
What Is Green Smoothie Detox?
The greens and fruit detox, commonly known as the green smoothie detox, involves consuming green smoothies for a specified duration to purify the body. The primary goal is to obtain all the essential fruits and vegetables without having to consume full meals of them, which saves time and effort.
Nevertheless, before embarking on a green smoothie detox routine, individuals often neglect to consider the potential side effects of the cleanse. If you’re not accustomed to consuming green smoothies regularly, you may encounter some unpleasant experiences before your body adjusts to the new routine.
5 Main Green Smoothie Detox Side Effects
Headaches resulting from the consumption of green smoothies are often caused by a fast body detoxification process. However, drinking a whole glass of green smoothie in two swallows can also lead to headaches because of the excessive amount of sugar entering the bloodstream.
It’s advisable to sip slowly next time or try taking smaller sips. Additionally, drinking water in between sips can help alleviate the symptoms of a rapid detox headache.
Although it may appear illogical, adding more greens to your green smoothie could be the solution if you feel dizzy after consuming it! You might be familiar with this sensation if you have consumed vegetables previously.
However, if increasing the amount of greens does not help alleviate the dizziness, it is recommended that you seek medical advice, particularly if you experience headaches or vomiting alongside the dizziness.
If you want to avoid nausea, consider eating something before consuming your green smoothie, particularly if it is your first meal of the day after waking up in the morning. To reduce the risk of nausea, it is best to choose lighter green smoothies like spinach instead of kale.
Dehydration can also contribute to nausea, so ensure you drink sufficient water throughout the day. If you are experiencing nausea symptoms, reduce the speed at which you are trying to detox until you feel better.
4. Stomach Pains
To avoid stomach discomfort, it is advisable to take smaller sips while consuming your green smoothie. Rather than one gulp, aim for one swallow.
Additionally, ensure you eat sufficiently throughout the day to keep your stomach feeling full. If you experience any pain, it is essential to give yourself a break as it is unlikely to be comfortable.
The occurrence of such symptoms is typically associated with the type of leafy greens used or the duration that the green smoothie has been sitting before being consumed. To minimize the risk of experiencing these symptoms, it is best to choose spinach over kale and blend your green smoothie when you are ready to consume it.
Additionally, it is essential to drink sufficient water throughout the day, even if you do not feel thirsty, to prevent the symptoms from manifesting.
Reasons For The Side Effects
Green smoothies have gained popularity as a way to detoxify the body, improve health, and aid in weight loss. However, consuming green smoothies may cause side effects in some individuals. Here are some reasons why:
Roadblock Caused by Raw Vegetables
Green smoothies are typically made with raw vegetables, and some people may have difficulty digesting them. The body needs to work harder to break down raw vegetables, and some people may experience digestive problems such as bloating, gas, and constipation.
Overload of Oxalic Acid
Green leafy vegetables such as spinach and kale contain oxalic acid, which can bind to calcium and other minerals in the body and form crystals. These crystals can cause kidney stones or worsen kidney problems in individuals with pre-existing kidney disease.
The Stowaway Problem
Green smoothies may contain harmful bacteria or parasites, especially if the vegetables are not properly washed or stored. Consuming contaminated green smoothies can lead to food poisoning, which can cause diarrhea, vomiting, and other gastrointestinal symptoms.
Goitrogens Relationship with Thyroid Gland
Some vegetables such as kale, spinach, and broccoli contain goitrogens, which are compounds that can interfere with thyroid gland function. Consuming large amounts of goitrogens may inhibit the thyroid gland’s ability to produce hormones, leading to hypothyroidism and other thyroid problems.
Heavy Metals in Some Vegetables
Green leafy vegetables such as spinach and kale may contain heavy metals such as lead, cadmium, and mercury. These heavy metals can accumulate in the body over time and cause long-term health problems such as kidney damage and neurological disorders.
In conclusion, green smoothies can be a healthy addition to one’s diet, but it’s important to be aware of the potential side effects they may cause. To minimize the risks, it’s recommended to wash vegetables thoroughly, rotate the types of vegetables used, and consume green smoothies in moderation. It’s also important to consult with a healthcare professional if you have pre-existing medical conditions or concerns about consuming green smoothies.
Common Ingredients In Green Smoothies That Can Cause Side Effects
Thallium is a heavy metal that can be found in some green smoothie ingredients like parsley and cucumbers.
If you are concerned about this then avoid certain ingredients or speak to your doctor before drinking green smoothies regularly for detox purposes.
2. Oxalic Acid
Oxalic acid happens naturally in many leafy greens, especially kale, chard, mustard greens, and beet leaves. It’s actually an important part of human diet because it helps with calcium absorption; however too much oxalic acid could make your body lose calcium by pushing it out through urine.
Again if you’re worried about oxalic acid causing smoothie detox side effects then talk to your doctor before continuing with the green smoothie detox.
Green smoothies are often grain-free because they’re made with leafy greens, but you might be surprised to find out that some people do add gluten-containing grains like wheat, barley, or rye to their green smoothies for texture.
If you have celiac disease or are otherwise allergic/sensitive to gluten then it’s good to check the ingredients of your green smoothie before drinking it.
Goitrogens are compounds found in cruciferous vegetables like kale, bok choy, broccoli, cabbage, etc. which can contribute to hypothyroidism if you have an existing issue or are eating a modified paleo diet without enough iodine.
If you’re worried about this then talk with your doctor and avoid these ingredients or limit intake to once a week before trying the green smoothie detox again.
5. Cyanogenic Glycosides
Cyanogenic glycosides happen naturally in cassava root and uncooked sweet potatoes because they contain enzymes that turn them into cyanide when not cooked properly.
This risk is extremely low unless you blend your green smoothies with raw root veggies rather than just leafy greens, but if you are worried then just stick to the leafy greens and avoid blending raw potatoes.
Common Allergens In Green Smoothies
1. Tree Nuts
You might find that you’re allergic to tree nuts like cashews, almonds, pistachios, etc. which can be found in green smoothie recipes using ingredients like almond milk, cacao powder, or peanut butter.
If this is the case for you then either choose different brands of each ingredient or try making your own nut milk at home with blanched almonds (which reduces the allergenicity) rather than buying processed brands.
Related Post: Best Nuts In Smoothies
You might find that you’re allergic to soy either by chance or due to an existing issue you already had.
If this is the case then avoid using any soy milk, tofu, tempeh, or miso in your green smoothies and consider switching to rice milk instead unless you’ve made your own at home with sprouted brown rice.
3. Sesame Seeds
You might also have an allergy to sesame seeds which you’ll when making green smoothies with tahini (sesame paste) or sesame oil.
If this is the case then consider making your own tahini at home with raw sesame seeds rather than buying the premade brands to avoid any allergens.
You might even find that you’re allergic to coconuts!
This is because coconut allergies are very rare, but if this has happened to you then choose different brands for your almond milk and other nut milks as well as oil substitutes like olive oil or avocado oil instead of purchasing any labeled as being from coconuts.
And if you’re not eating a paleo diet then you might find that you’re allergic to legumes like peanuts, beans, and peas which are commonly found in green smoothie recipes using ingredients like peanut butter or MCT oil.
If this is the case for you then make your own nut butters at home using raw almonds and avoid adding things like peanut butter to your smoothies unless they were 100% homemade without any junky ingredients.
There are also many other common allergens that can appear in anything from chocolate bars to protein powder – be sure to always read labels! – but these ingredients aren’t that common in green smoothies so it’s unlikely that they’ll be the cause of any allergic reactions you might experience.
Have no fear, though – even if you do end up with an allergic reaction it will only last for about 45 minutes to 4 hours unless you’re extremely unlucky and have a severe allergy.
Just stay away from anything that may be causing your problem until the feeling passes and then try again with something different the next time to find out what works best for your body!
How To Consume Green Smoothies To Avoid Symptoms
As long as you take care when making your green smoothie by using non-toxic ingredients and reducing any side effects of green smoothie detox that discomfort you, then there should be nothing stopping you from enjoying this healthy beverage!
Try not to blend in large batches since this could increase risk of bacterial growth during the day, and replace overripe fruit with fresh to maintain quality.
- Use organic ingredients whenever possible to avoid any chemicals that might be in commercial fertilizers.
- Drink green smoothies as soon as possible after making them in order to prevent bacterial growth or molding.
- If you are concerned about the time it takes to make healthy green smoothies then consider taking a multivitamin with your regular meal plan since this will cover many of the benefits of drinking green smoothies regularly. However if you enjoy drinking green smoothie detox drinks regularly for their beneficial properties then there is no real reason for worrying! As long as you use safe ingredients and take care with storing your drinks there’s really nothing bad that can happen during the day.
- Keep in mind that the lactose, gluten, and oxalic acid present in many green smoothie ingredients can cause stomach pain or diarrhea for certain people, so be sure to check the food labels of each ingredient you use before blending anything up if it’s important for you to avoid these side effects.
- It might be a good idea for most people to stick only to leafy greens like spinach instead of using kale since it can contribute more oxalic acid than other vegetables.
- Use filtered water whenever possible since tap water could have higher levels of lead from the pipes it travels through.
Green Smoothie Detox Side Effects – Final Thoughts
These are a few of the typical symptoms that may arise during the initial stages of a green smoothie detox. If any of these symptoms continue or occur suddenly during the detox, it is critical to stop and seek medical advice to rule out any serious conditions, particularly if severe pain is experienced.
It is vital to recognize that consuming green smoothies regularly will likely have different effects on your body than occasionally drinking them. Being aware of these green smoothie detox symptoms will aid in avoiding being caught off guard!
Thank you for reading!