Nutrition

Our Honest Review of Garden of Life Greens

Is this greens powder a better alternative to AG1?

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While you typically can get the nutrients you need from a healthy, balanced diet, some people might need more to meet their health goals. Dietary supplements, like vitamins, protein shakes, and greens powders, can give you additional nutrients to improve your health (1). Marketed as a superfood-packed one-scoop nutrient bomb, Greens powder have become a popular go-to for many.

If you’ve listened to a podcast in the last five years you’ve probably been the subject of greens powder marketing in some shape or form—most likely the ubiquitous AG1 ads. But AG1 isn’t the only greens powder, and one of the chief complaints about it is its exorbitant cost.  Garden of Life Greens, on the other hand, are significantly more affordable per serving and per unit. But is it legit? I reviewed it to find out.

Garden of Life Greens

Pros
  • Contains organic ingredients
  • Affordable
Cons
  • Vagueness of superfood ingredient amounts
  • Grassy flavor

What Are Garden of Life Greens?

Garden of Life Greens is a greens superfood powder that claims to “alkalize, detoxify, and energize.” One scoop contains 40 ingredients, including leafy greens, sprouts, fruits, and vegetables. The powder is Certified USDA Organic, Non-GMO Project Verified, NSF Certified Gluten-Free, and free of artificial sweeteners. 

Garden of Life Greens ingredients

While Garden of Life Greens contains many healthy ingredients, the company doesn’t provide details on the specific amounts of each superfood ingredient. Here’s what we do know about the ingredients within the greens powder.

Superfoods: Garden of Life Greens contains 4.5 grams (g) of organically farmed green juice and sprout blends. These blends are a mixture of leafy greens and sprouts, such as barley grass, oat grass, quinoa sprouts, chia seed sprouts, and many more. These greens are known as “superfoods,” foods with supposed health benefits, such as improving immune function and lowering your risk of disease prevention or progression (2).

Probiotic and enzyme blend: The greens powder contains 30mg of raw probiotics and digestive enzymes. According to research, probiotics are live microorganisms that may improve digestive health by treating and preventing infections. Digestive enzymes are biological catalysts that speed up the chemical reactions in your body and are often used to aid in digestion (34).

Antioxidants: Garden of Life Greens has 2.4g of organic fruit and veggie juice antioxidants. Antioxidants are substances that may prevent or delay certain types of cell damage. They are often found in fruits and vegetables and are available as dietary supplements (5). 

Flavor: Garden of Life Greens is available in Apple, Chocolate, and Original flavors. Original has the typical, earthy flavor of most greens powders. 

Plus, each serving (about 6.9g per scoop) of Garden of Life Greens has:

garden of life supergreens powder nutrition label

What’s Good About Garden of Life Greens?

Contains organic ingredients

Garden of Life Greens contains raw ingredients that are organically grown. The company prides itself on avoiding GMO, bioengineered, or synthetic ingredients in their formulations. To ensure you’re getting quality ingredients, Garden of Life Greens holds several third-party certifications from USDA Organic, the National Sanitation Foundation (NSF), and the Non-GMO Project Verified to back its claims. You should do your own research on organic ingredients and the value of organics to assess the importance of them to you personally, but to many this is a huge plus. 

Affordable

Not everyone is looking to break the bank while taking steps to improve their health. That said, a 7.3-ounce (oz) of Garden of Life Greens is relatively cheap, at $32 or $1.30 per serving. This makes it a much more affordable option than the popular AG1, which is $79 or $2.49 a serving.

MORE GREENS

What’s Not Good About Garden of Life Greens?

Blends don’t provide specific details on the amount of each ingredient

With the 40 nutrient-dense ingredients the Garden of Life Greens markets, the company doesn’t tell us much about the amount of each ingredient in the formula. While the company does share how much of each blend is available per serving, we don’t know how much of each individual fruit, vegetable, sprout, probiotic, and enzyme is available. This means we don’t know if the amount is meaningful enough to have real effect—especially with materials like probiotics, the effectiveness of which is dependent on reaching a critical mass. 

Those who want specific details on their nutrients will have difficulty with this greens powder. 

Grassy taste

Like most greens powder, Garden of Life Greens’ Original flavor tastes similar to, well, grass. This might be obvious to some, given that the powder contains a bunch of greens, but many reviews reveal that people weren’t prepared for the flavor. Fortunately, the powder seems to mix well in other drinks, like smoothies and protein shakes, to help mask the taste. You can also try Apple or Chocolate flavors with a less earthy flavor.

The Competition

Naked Greens

Naked Greens and Garden of Life greens are very similar. The nutrition labels and pricing are nearly identical. Try each and choose the one you find easier to drink.

Primal Greens

Garden of Life greens powder is significantly cheaper than Primal Greens and shares the same issue of an unclear ingredient load.

Live It Up Greens (Enso Superfoods) 

Live It Up is significantly more expensive and tends to be marketed toward a different customer than Garden of Life, which is to say it’s got more exotic ingredients in it. 

AG1

The most popular—or at least the best known—greens powder is significantly more expensive than Garden of Life, and yet it, like all the other greens powders, falls into the trap of not divulging how much of the good stuff is in its product. 

Amazing Grass Supergreens

Amazing Grass is similarly priced to Garden of Life and the brands share a value of high-quality ingredients, reasonable pricing, and, again, a lack of specifics in regards to ingredient load.

The Bottom Line

Garden of Life Greens contains a boatload of healthy and organic ingredients and is available in several flavors. However, like other greens powders on the market, it doesn’t provide much clarity on its superfood nutrients, which can be misleading. Ultimately, deciding if any potential health benefits are worth the purchase is up to you.

References
  1. U.S. Food and Drug Administration (2022) FDA 101: Dietary Supplements.
  2. Clevand Clinic (2021) What Is a Superfood, Anyway?.
  3. Bodke, et al (2022) Role of Probiotics in Human Health.
  4. Ianiro, et al (2016) Digestive Enzyme Supplementation in Gastrointestinal Diseases.
  5. MedlinePlus (2017) Antioxidants.