Processed food and beverage companies have officially jumped on the smoothie bandwagon. Everywhere we look now in the media and on store shelves, there seems to be a new bottled smoothie on display.
Of course, some bottled smoothies are significantly healthier than others. However, even the most responsible manufacturers cannot bottle a product that matches the health benefits of the real thing: a homemade smoothie blended with fresh, whole, organic ingredients.
The following are seven reasons to leave the bottled smoothies on the shelf.
1. They’re processed, and that’s a huge minus
Even the most gently processed smoothies are still processed. They are made in factories, in large batches, and because of this are susceptible to contamination during many stages of processing. Just this year, the amount of recalls of processed foods (including organic processed foods) has been significant — due to exposure to listeria.
Besides listeria, other types of bacteria, as well as various contaminants and allergens, can make their way into bottled smoothies. It’s a risk we run when eating (or in this case drinking) any processed food.
2. Some contain hidden sugars
Some bottled smoothies are free of added sugar, this is true. However, many do contain it, and it may not always be obvious. Read the label: terms such as “dextrose,” “fructose,” “maltodextrin,” and “corn syrup,” along with many others, are just fancy words for different forms of refined sugar.
3. Some contain preservatives
In order to extend their shelf life, many smoothie manufacturers will add preservatives to the mix. Again, look at the label: If there are terms you cannot pronounce and are not easily recognizable as actual foods, chances are high that they are various preservatives, or other chemically-based additives.
4. They often contain “natural flavors”
Even the most minimally processed, “natural” bottled smoothies often contain natural flavors. While this name sound innocuous, natural flavors, as we have previously reported, can be derived from just about anything, as long as it was once found in nature.
This leaves the door open for some pretty disgusting stuff — and it’s heavily processed to boot.
5. Those extras aren’t doing much extra for your health
Many smoothies contain added protein powders, in order to “boost energy” or “enhance workout performance.” The problem is, many of these protein powders and other boosters contain additives, artificial flavorings, and preservatives. Many are also soy-based, and as we have reported, unfermented soy may pose dangers to your health.
On top of that, many smoothies have synthetic vitamins added in — and these vitamins are not easily absorbed by the body.
6. The ones with yogurt often do not live up to their probiotic promises
Real, homemade Greek yogurt is a superfood. However, many of the yogurts used in bottled smoothies do not have any live active cultures left in them — making their probiotic benefits essentially null and void.
7. They’re not that fresh… and it’s in the taste.
It’s no contest… a smoothie that you find in a bottle is never going to be as fresh as one that you make yourself at home. The blend has been sitting refrigerated on the shelves, so it can never be the same as one that is truly fresh. You can taste it.
Make your own!
To get the highest amount of live enzymes and other nutrients — not to mention great taste! — from your fruits and veggies, put the bottle down and make your own delicious smoothies!
Making smoothies at home couldn’t be simpler. All you need is a blender and some fresh, organic ingredients. To start, try out our guide to great belly-fat-busting green smoothies, as well as our recipes for a few yummy brain-boosting smoothies!
To add a little extra to your smoothie — without the processed additives — check out our homemade protein powders — made with whole ingredients.
When it comes to smoothies, you’ll be truly glad you chose DIY!
-The Alternative Daily