True Cellular Formulas Team - April 18, 2023

Risks of Bottled & To-Go Smoothies

Too Much Sugar and Not Enough Nutrients

Risks of Bottled & To-Go Smoothies: Too Much Sugar and Not Enough Nutrients

Eating on the go can be a challenge, especially when trying to make healthy choices for yourself and your family. Bottled smoothies and to-go smoothies from cafes might seem like an ideal solution for a quick and nutritious snack. However, it's essential to be mindful of their contents, as not all smoothies are created equal. In this article, we'll discuss the health dangers of some bottled and to-go smoothies, focusing on their high sugar content and lack of other essential nutrients.

The Sugar Content of Bottled and To-Go Smoothies

One significant concern with many bottled and to-go smoothies is their high sugar content. Consuming large amounts of added sugars can have negative health effects when consumed in excess.[1] The American Heart Association recommends that women consume no more than 6 teaspoons of added sugar per day, while men should consume no more than 9 teaspoons.[2] Unfortunately, many bottled and to-go smoothies far exceed these recommendations. For example, a popular bottled smoothie brand contains 63 grams of sugar per serving, equivalent to over 15 teaspoons of sugar. [3] Consuming this much sugar in one sitting can increase the risk of obesity, type 2 diabetes, and other health problems.[2]

Health Risks Associated with Excessive Sugar Consumption

  1. Obesity

    Excessive sugar consumption can lead to weight gain and obesity due to the high-calorie content of sugar. When we consume more calories than we burn through physical activity, our bodies store the excess energy as fat. Over time, this can result in significant weight gain and obesity, increasing the risk of numerous health problems, such as heart disease, stroke, and certain types of cancer.[4]
  2. Type 2 Diabetes

    High sugar intake is strongly associated with the development of type 2 diabetes. Consuming excessive amounts of sugar can cause blood sugar levels to spike, which over time can lead to insulin resistance. Insulin resistance is a condition where the body's cells do not respond properly to the hormone insulin, which is responsible for regulating blood sugar levels. As a result, blood sugar levels remain high, increasing the risk of developing type 2 diabetes.[5]
  3. Heart Disease

    Excessive sugar consumption can contribute to the development of heart disease in several ways. High sugar intake can lead to weight gain and obesity, which in turn can increase the risk of heart disease. Furthermore, consuming large amounts of sugar can result in higher levels of triglycerides (a type of fat in the blood) and lower levels of high-density lipoprotein (HDL) cholesterol, commonly known as "good" cholesterol. Both of these factors can contribute to the buildup of plaque in the arteries, increasing the risk of heart attacks and strokes.[6]
  4. Tooth Decay

Sugar is a leading cause of tooth decay, as it provides an energy source for the bacteria in our mouths. When we consume sugary foods and drinks, the bacteria in our mouths feed on the sugar, producing acids that break down tooth enamel. Over time, this acid can cause cavities, gum disease, and tooth loss. Regularly consuming high-sugar smoothies can exacerbate this problem, particularly if we do not maintain proper oral hygiene by brushing and flossing daily.[7]

Lack of Nutrients in Bottled and To-Go Smoothies

In addition to high sugar content, many bottled and to-go smoothies lack essential nutrients, such as fiber and protein. While fresh fruits and vegetables are excellent sources of fiber, many bottled smoothies are made using only fruit juice, which lacks the fiber found in whole fruits and vegetables.[1] Additionally, many bottled and to-go smoothies lack protein, an essential nutrient that helps us feel full and satisfied after eating.

The lack of nutrients in these smoothies can have significant health consequences. For example, a diet lacking in fiber can lead to digestive problems, such as constipation, while a diet lacking in protein can lead to muscle loss and weakness.[8]

Healthier Alternatives to Bottled and To-Go Smoothies

While bottled and to-go smoothies may be convenient, there are many healthier alternatives available. For example, making your own smoothies at home using fresh fruits and vegetables is an excellent way to ensure you consume a nutritious and healthy snack. Making smoothies at home also allows you to control the ingredients, including sugar and sweeteners.

Another alternative is to choose fresh smoothies from juice bars or cafes that use whole fruits and vegetables and do not contain excessive added sugars. Many juice bars offer a wide variety of healthy smoothie options, including those that are low in sugar and high in fiber and protein.

Selecting low-sugar smoothie options is also a great way to enjoy the benefits of bottled and to-go smoothies without the negative health effects. Many brands of bottled smoothies now offer low-sugar options made with whole fruits and vegetables and contain minimal amounts of added sugars or sweeteners.[1]

The Naughty List: Smoothies with Too Much Sugar

When choosing a smoothie, it's essential to be aware of the sugar content. The following smoothies are high in sugar and should be avoided or consumed in moderation:

  • Green Machine by Naked
  • Rainbow Machine by Naked
  • Blue Machine by Naked
  • Red Machine by Naked
  • Power-C Machine by Naked
  • Superfood Machine by Naked
  • Original Superfood Smoothie by Odwalla
  • Bolthouse Farms Amazing Mango
  • Bolthouse Farms Strawberry Banana
  • Bolthouse Farms Daily Greens
  • Bolthouse Farms Berry Boost
  • Innocent Energize
  • Innocent Defence
  • Innocent Antioxidant

The Better List: Lower-Sugar Smoothie Options

While it's important to note that even the "better" options may still contain relatively high sugar levels, these smoothies offer a healthier choice due to their fat and protein content. These options can be more suitable when you're on the go:

  • GENIUS JUICE The Original Coconut Smoothie
  • GENIUS JUICE Mocha Coconut Coconut Smoothie
  • Once Upon A Farm Strawberry Banana Swirl Dairy-Free Smoothie
  • Once Upon A Farm Strawberry Banana Swirl Dairy-Free Smoothie
  • Harmless Harvest Organic Chocolate Coconut Smoothie
  • Forager Project Organic Mango Smoothie
  • Koia Straw-nana Dream Smoothie


Bottled and to-go smoothies might seem like a healthy and convenient snack, but they can pose significant health risks, particularly when they contain high amounts of added sugars and lack essential nutrients. These risks include increased obesity, type 2 diabetes, and other health problems. Fortunately, many alternatives are available, including making your smoothies at home, choosing fresh smoothies from juice bars, and selecting low-sugar options. By being mindful of what we consume, we can make healthier choices and protect our health in the long term.

  1. Harvard Health Publishing. "Fresh juice drinks, healthy as they seem?" Harvard Health Blog, 29 July 2016,
  2. American Heart Association. (2022). Sugar 101. Retrieved March 20, 2023, from
  3. Naked Juice Company. (n.d.). Green Machine. Retrieved March 20, 2023, from
  4. Malik, Vasanti S., et al. "Sugar-sweetened beverages and weight gain in children and adults: a systematic review and meta-analysis." The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, vol. 98, no. 4, 2013, pp. 1084-1102.
  5. Imamura, Fumiaki, et al. "Consumption of sugar-sweetened beverages, artificially sweetened beverages, and fruit juice and incidence of type 2 diabetes: systematic review, meta-analysis, and estimation of population attributable fraction." BMJ, vol. 351, 2015, doi:10.1136/bmj.h3576.
  6. Yang, Quanhe, et al. "Added sugar intake and cardiovascular diseases mortality among US adults." JAMA Internal Medicine, vol. 174, no. 4, 2014, pp. 516-524.
  7. Moynihan, Paula J., and Poul Erik Petersen. "Diet, nutrition and the prevention of dental diseases." Public Health Nutrition, vol. 7, no. 1A, 2004, pp. 201-226.
  8. National Institutes of Health. (2021). Protein in the diet. Retrieved March 20, 2023, from