The 21-Day Smoothie Diet weight loss plan by the health coach Drew Sgoutas has become a sought-after way to drop excess weight. Smoothies are considered very popular when it comes to wellness. Smoothies can give plenty of proteins, antioxidants, minerals, vitamins, and fibers with almost zero fat content. But what about weight loss? Is this 21-day slimming plan a legitimate path to successful weight loss? or is it just another internet scam? In this unbiased review, learn the pros, cons, and research on this popular smoothie diet and how to get a refund from the company if it is not right for you. Affiliate Disclosure: This site may earn a commission on purchases you make. See the affiliate disclosure page for more insights.
Exercise Doesn't Help Weight Loss
Physical activity will improve your fitness. This is indisputable. But is exercise really effective for weight loss? The fitness industry would love you to believe that losing weight is just a matter of working out. Commercials for gyms and home exercise equipment often depict people achieving results by exercising to exhaustion.
The experts would have you believe that building muscle is the key to stoking your metabolism, burning calories, and burning off excess belly fat. I have an MS in exercise science and a BS in chemistry and biology. I'm here to say the “experts” are either misinformed or flat-out lying to you. Exercise -by itself- usually does not promote weight loss.
Does Muscle Burn Calories?
Muscle does burn more calories than fat, but it's less than you think. One pound of muscle only burns about 6 to 7 calories a day. That's not much. While this is significantly greater than a pound of fat (which burns about 2 calories daily), it's still not much.
Suppose exercise helped you add an extra 10 pounds of muscle to your body frame. This means you'd only be burning 60 to 70 more extra calories per day.
This comes to 420 to 490 calories a week. One slice of pizza has at least 300 calories. And lets' not even talk about how exercise can sometimes increase your appetite.
Unless you're going to work out for 2 hours or more every day, the exercise by itself- is not effective for long-term weight loss success.
So you see the dilemma – if you don't eat better – exercise will not slim you down.
What's Better: Juice Cleanses vs. Smoothies For Weight Loss?
Juicing and performing juice cleanses are popular but how do juices compare to smoothies? One difference is that juices typically lack fiber. The RDA for fiber is just 28-35 grams per day, which is about 1 ounce. This is the minimum amount. Many Americans only eat about half the recommended fiber they should be consuming.
Juice Cleanse Problem 1
Since juice cleanses lack fiber they are inferior to smoothies which contain whole foods – including fiber. While fiber acts as a laxative and can improve regular bowel habits, research also proves fiber is the food of good gut bacteria. You may have heard of the word “prebiotic.” Prebiotics are the substances that probiotic bacteria eat.
Prebiotics are another name for fiber. This is important because we know that when good bacteria eat fiber they produce substances called short-chain fatty acids. These short-chain fatty acids help the immune system work better. Studies show some short-chain fatty acids, such as butyrate, can protect against colon cancer. Since juices lack fiber their contribution to short-chain fatty acid production is less.
Juice Cleanse Problem 2
Another downside to juice cleanses is that they can contain a lot of simple sugars. While the sugar in food is not natural, when you drink a high-sugar beverage – natural sugar or added sugars – it causes a big spike in blood sugar levels. The body responds by pumping out more insulin. When insulin levels go up quickly, they can cause blood sugar to plummet. This can cause feelings of fatigue and fuzzy thinking. This doesn't happen with smoothies because their fiber content blunts that quick rise in blood sugar. This happens too if the smoothie contains extra protein too.
Can Fruit & Vegetable Smoothies Help Weight Loss?
While I'll always say eating and chewing real food is best, there are weight loss advantages for drinking smoothies. Some of the benefits include:
Smoothies are loaded with fiber
Unlike juicing, which strips out the fiber, blending whole foods into smoothies retains the fiber. This is an important difference because fiber has zero calories. As such, you won't gain weight with low-calorie, fiber-rich drinks.
Also, the fiber slows digestion in the stomach, which in turn helps you feel fuller for a longer time. This increases satiety, reducing the desire to eat fast foods. The fiber in smoothies also stabilizes blood sugar and prevents blood sugar spikes. This not only provides you with a steady stream of energy throughout the day, but it's also available to those who have diabetes and need better blood sugar control. Studies have also shown those who consume more fruits and vegetables have a lower overall risk of getting diabetes in the first place.
Fiber Supports Microbiome Health
Few know that fiber is also a healthy food of good gut bacteria. Your microbiome weighs about 3 pounds and is composed of between 1000 and 1500 different types of bacteria. While research continues to discover what these microbes do, we know that healthy bacteria prefer to eat fiber and other plant compounds such as polyphenols.
When good gut bacteria consume fiber, they produce short-chain fatty acids, such as acetate, propionate, and butyrate. These are gut health substances that we use to stay healthy. For example, research shows short-chain fatty acids such as butyrate has anti-cancer effects. Foods that make butyrate include spinach, cauliflower, beans and legumes, kale, onions, peas, bananas, oranges, apples, blueberries, and strawberries. Many other foods increase butyrate production, too.
Health Effects of Butyrate
- Improve insulin sensitivity
- Modulate immune functioning
- Reduce oxidative stress (free radical damage)
- Reduce inflammation
- Assist with brain cell production
- Help cells grow and differentiate
- Burn fat
Some research hints a healthier bacteria may even help weight loss, although more research is needed.
Smoothies Contain Fluids
Research shows greater water intake can help weight loss. The fluids that are naturally present in fruits and veggies add to your daily water intake. Drinking more water also appears to ease depression symptoms too.
Health Effects of Magnesium
The average human body contains about 25 grams of magnesium with 90% of that found in the muscles and bones. While that may sound like a lot it's less than 1 ounce. It may even be less in those who eat the standard American diet (SAD), which lacks magnesium-rich foods such as spinach, broccoli, and kale. It's hard to say enough about how critically important magnesium is. Magnesium is essential for over 350 enzymatic reactions in the body.
Magnesium is critical to making cellular energy (called ATP). Studies show magnesium may reduce migraine headaches and may even battle depression. Magnesium also appears to reduce body mass index, waist circumference, and body weight in some people. Subclinical magnesium deficiency is suspected to be a public health crisis, being the main driver of heart disease, the leading cause of death in America.
Why Potassium Is Important To Your Health
The essential mineral potassium is present in every cell of your body. Potassium also is integral to heart and muscle function and the transmission of nerve impulses. Potassium also keeps your blood vessels flexible and healthy too. Many clinical studies have demonstrated that increasing potassium intake reduces blood pressure. This effect is so well known that the DASH diet (dietary approaches to stop hypertension) incorporates many potassium-rich foods. Given its importance, sadly, most Americans do not get the recommended amount of daily potassium in their diets, which is about 4700 mg per day.
Smoothies Contain Natural Weight Loss Ingredients
Thylakoids are components of green vegetables such as spinach, kale, and collard greens. They are found in the chloroplasts of green plants. Mounting evidence suggests green vegetable thylakoids may play a role in healthy weight loss. Thylakoids appear to suppress appetite through a variety of mechanisms such as
- reducing the hunger hormone ghrelin
- increasing the hormone leptin
- stimulating the release of Glucagon-like peptide 1 (GLP-1)
- increasing cholecystokinin (CCK)
In one study, overweight women reported they were 21% less hungry after eating green veggie thylakoids. They further reported:
- 36% fewer cravings for sweets and snacks
- 30% reduced cravings for salty foods
- 28% reduced cravings for sweet-tasting foods
- 14% improved satiety (feeling full)
Weight Loss Smoothie Drinks Clinical Proof
There is some scientific support for using meal replacement shakes to reduce body weight.
Researchers noted that meal replacement shakes a day were effective for weight loss when used by overweight people with diabetes. In this report, people drank two weight loss shakes a day for 3 months. The slimming shakes were 210 calories each. Those drinking the weight loss smoothies lost twice as much weight – over 12 pounds – compared to those who just followed a healthy eating diet book.
The effectiveness of weight loss shakes has also been seen in US military personnel who were overweight. US military researchers observed army volunteers who drank two weight-loss shakes a day lost between 9 and 13 pounds after 3 months.
When researchers pooled the results of 6 previous investigations, they recorded meal replacement shakes could help people lose between 7% and 8% of their body weight compared to those who simply cut their calories.
Clinical research like this supports the idea that healthy smoothies that are low in calories such as those used in the Drew Sgoutas Smoothie Diet -can be used to help people safely trim down and lose excess body weight. The key, as with any sensible weight-reduction plan, is sticking to the program.
To get the best results – like those shown on the smoothie diet website – following the program is crucial. This may be one of the strengths of the 21-day plan because is it not just a smoothie diet ebook. There's more to the program.
What Is the 21-Day Smoothie Diet?
The Smoothie Diet is a weight-loss strategy planned out to be used as a meal substitute. You drink the shakes instead of eating meals. Drew Sgoutas, a health coach, designed the all-natural diet plan that involves lots of leafy greens and fresh fruits that he said he's previously used successfully with his health coaching clients. The book also features food recipes that ensure that you attain your wellness and health goals in just 21 days.
The 3-week weight loss plan varies in nutrients and ingredients each week. The goal of this is to ensure continued weight loss success.
How Do You Use The 21-Day Smoothie Plan?
Basically, you will be exchanging meals you usually eat for fruit and vegetable meal replacement smoothies. Typically you would be drinking a smoothie at breakfast and lunch and eating a normal dinner. Some cheat days are built into the program to reduce the chances of you falling off the wagon. You can choose to do the cheat days or not.
Components Of The 21 Day Smoothie Diet
This program is a comprehensive guide on how you can stay healthy even after losing weight. The main components are:
1 The Smoothie Schedule
It’s a 21-day program that provides a chart that breaks down all the information relating to the daily smoothie recipes. The schedule also highlights at what time you should be taking your health drinks.
2 Recipe Cards
This program has printable recipe cards with special tips on how to make an easy yet healthy smoothie. The cards contain all the necessary nutritional information, proper quantities, and instructions regarding the preparation methods. There's no guessing and nothing is left to the imagination.
3 Weekly Shopping Lists
This is a comprehensive weekly list detailing the ingredients that you require for an effective smoothie recipe.
4 A Daily Journal
This review notebook is specifically designed to help you save entries relating to your wellness and weight loss progress. The Daily Journal was created to help you to daily note down your moods. You also need to fill in your exercises, calorie intake, and what you have eaten. Food journaling is not required for success but it is provided to help you stay on track.
5 Workout Program
The diet provides pre-planned workout information designed for individuals. Workouts are required parts of any healthy lifestyle. The workouts are designed in different durations such as five, ten, and twenty-minute workouts. Start with what you are able to do. Remember, even a little bit of exercise provides big benefits to the body.
What's In The 21 Day Smoothie Diet Program
Here's what you get when you purchase the weight loss plan:
- 21-day weight loss and health improvement plan
- More than 36 weight loss meal replacement smoothie recipes – including diabetes-friendly recipes
- Smoothie-making prep guide and tips
Bonus gift: 3-Day Smoothie Detox, which you can do before starting the official 21-day slimming program. The Smoothie detox program contains 3 unique meal replacement detox recipes along with a shopping list of what you'll need as well as 2 recipes options if you want variety.
Bonus gift: Quick Start Guide. The quick guide is a condensed synopsis of the 3-week smoothie guide to give you an overview of the rapid weight loss plan along with shopping lists and a preparation guide. The Quickstart guide is for those who don't want to read the entire book to reap the benefits and want to start quickly.
How Does The 21-Day Smoothie Diet Work?
Before you begin the 21-day Smoothie Diet plan, you start the process by using the three-day smoothie detox, a small program that is said will aid you in flushing the toxins and preparing your body. Generally, I don't believe that detoxing is needed but if you want to do it that's fine.
You’ll begin the actual 21-day procedure after the detox. The process involves taking smoothies daily and using them as meal and snack replacements. The smoothies should substitute two of your main meals and provide a long-lasting feeling of satisfaction so that you don’t experience hunger pangs and food cravings.
Types of Smoothies
The smoothies featured in this diet program are as follows:
- Gluten-free smoothies: This is a program that provides many gluten-free recipes. This diet is ideal for anyone with allergies.
- Diabetes-friendly smoothies: This diet guide is prepared specially for people with diabetes who want to lose weight. The smoothies help regulate blood sugar levels. The sugar mostly comes from fruit but this does not mean the smoothies are high in sugar. The fiber in the fruit balances out the sugar. Also, vegetables – which are low in sugar – figure prominently in the weight loss smoothie recipes.
- Smoothies for kids: Children also struggle with weight problems. This guide provides child-friendly snacks that make sure your kids consume veggies and fruits that promote wellness.
Do The Diet Have Enough Protein?
Fruits and vegetables DO contain proteins and amino acids. Since smoothies contain a variety of fruits and vegetables by following the plan, you are consuming a broad spectrum of all the amino acids. This includes:
- Essential amino acids (those we can't make in the body)
- Non-essential amino acids (those the body can make)
And the proteins in plants are lean proteins because they have no saturated fat or trans fat. This is something those who criticize the diet fail to realize. Another advantage of the vegetarian smoothies in the Drew Sgoutas program is that plant proteins lower IGF-1 levels. Insulin-like growth factor 1 (IGF-1) causes cancer to grow. It's a fact that people who eat more plants get less cancer and other diseases too.
So if you follow the plan, you WILL be consuming amino acids throughout the day to supply your muscles with the building blocks they need to stay strong. Also, this is not a liquid diet. You will be eating dinner, which will probably contain lean proteins too, such as chicken, fish, turkey, beef, etc.
Who Created The 21 Day Smoothie Diet Program
The creator of the program is Drew Sgoutas also known as “Health Coach Drew.” He claims he has created the best smoothies for losing weight as tested on his own coaching clients. If you are curious who Drew Sgoutas is, he is not a registered dietitian. Rather, he has a BA in psychology from Syracuse University. Since people eat for many reasons and I wonder if his psych degree factored into how the plan is laid out?
Drew Sgoutas is also a certified health coach (CHC) and a member of the American Association of Drugless Practitioners (AADP). Prior to becoming involved in health coaching, his LinkedIn profile lists him working as a Designer and Art Director.
Smoothie Diet Guarantee and Refund Infomation
The 21-day smoothie program comes with a 60-day refund policy guarantee. Because you are purchasing a digital weight loss program, you will receive it immediately. You do not have to wait for the smoothies to be mailed to you.
If, after kicking the tires, you decide it is not the right weight loss program for you, you can request a refund directly from the official company. To get a refund, email the company at email@example.com and they can assist you.
Alternatively, since Clickbank is the online retailer that handles sales, if you need a refund, you can also request it from them. Clickbank is a legitimate online retailer that has been in business for over 20 years and has an A+ rating with the Better Business Bureau. Here are the steps to get a refund from Clickbank:
- go to clickbank.com
- click on support at the top of your screen
- click customer support
On the customer support page, you can start a live chat with a customer service representative who can help you get a refund on the smoothie diet. You can also use your order number to look up your purchase. Refunds are processed 24 hours a day 7 days a week so you can even get refunds on weekends if you like. If you want to reach out directly to the company, email them at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Smoothie Diet Negative Adverse Side Effects
Food is generally recognized as safe for most people. So for the vast majority who follow this weight reduction program, I don't see many adverse reactions occurring from the Drew Sgoutas diet. For those who are not “healthy” here are some things to consider before starting this slimming program.
- Increasing fiber intake can magnify bowel movements and gas. Take time to adjust by drinking just 1 smoothie per day for the first week.
- People with kidney disease should speak to their doctors. Fruits and vegetables are high in potassium which may pose problems for those with renal failure.
- Vitamin K-rich foods like fruits and vegetables may interfere with the function of blood thinners like warfarin.
- Weight-loss diets are not appropriate for pregnant women.
- Ask your doctor first if you have undergone bariatric weight loss surgery
- Reducing calories may decrease your blood sugar levels. This may be a problem for people taking diabetes medications like metformin or insulin.
- Don't drink smoothies for at least an hour after taking hypothyroid medicine like levothyroxine or Armor Thyroid.
- Some foods like grapefruit may interact with the breakdown of medications
Smoothie Diet User Testimonials
The official smoothie diet website has many testimonials and before and after pictures from real-life people who were successful. Here is a summary of some of them:
- Dawn from Arlington VA claims to have lost 14 pounds in 21 days
- Danielle, a woman from Houston, Texas, states she dropped 8 pounds in 1 week.
A woman named Amanda claims to have lost over 70 pounds using this Smoothie Diet program. She does not tell how long it took to lose the weight, but odds are this happened over the course of many months.
The company says these are people who followed the diet religiously. They did not cheat. This is important. Straying away from the program means your results may vary. This is the same thing for all slimming regimens too.
Can Smoothie Diets Reverse Type II Diabetes?
If someone loses enough body weight, then improvements may occur in fasting blood sugar, hemoglobin A1C levels, triglycerides, belly fat, and other aspects of type II diabetes. I have known people whose doctors said they no longer needed diabetes medications after they lost weight.
The Drew Sgoutas smoothie detox diet is rich in vegetables with minerals like magnesium and chromium, which have been shown to help diabetes. While the smoothies will incorporate fruits, the small amount of natural sugar in fruits is balanced by the high amount of fiber, which is very healthy. Fiber has no calories and is called a prebiotic, which means it feeds our gut health, helping strengthen the microbiome. A healthy microbiome also may help with losing weight too.
Remember, we are talking about the diet helping type II diabetes and metabolic syndrome (pre-diabetes). There is no way to reverse type I diabetes. If you don't know which type of diabetes you have or if you take medications for diabetes, speak with your doctor before starting any weight loss regimen.
21-Day Smoothie Diet vs. Slimfast
The biggest difference is Slimfast is a prepacked ultra-processed product while the Drew Sgoutas Smoothie Diet plan puts the emphasis on just eating (and drinking) real foods. Because of this, the shakes will be much higher in fiber. Most prepacked meal replacement shakes -even “high fiber” shakes – will have less fiber than a smoothie containing real food.
Can't You Make Your Own Smoothies?
Blending foods together is not difficult so you could do this yourself if you liked. The Drew Sgoutas 3-week Program takes the guesswork out of what foods to use. For example, what is the right combination of fruits vs. vegetables to use? How much of each do you blend together? All foods have calories so using too much of this or that could mean a good-tasting smoothie that is also very high in calories. That would short-circuit your results.
What Blender Do You Need?
According to Health Coach Drew, the creator of the program, you only need a blender with a strong motor. Odds are, the blender you have in your kitchen right now will work just fine. You don't need a blender like the Vitamix, although I have a Vitamix and can attest it's the most powerful of all. If you don't have a blender, you can find affordable brands at both Walmart and Target.
Do You Need Supplements To Help The Weight Loss Drinks Work Better?
Food – like fruits, vegetables, beans, and seeds – contains thousands of diverse bioactive supplements such as vitamins, minerals, amino acids, and protein as well as antioxidants, fiber, and plant nutrients such as polyphenols, carotenoids, omega 3 fatty acids, and terpenes to name a few. Because of this nutrient density, you don't need extra supplements to make the smoothies work better.
Is The Smoothie Detox Diet Keto Friendly?
If you are following a low carbohydrate, ketogenic diet, the DrewDrew Sgoutas program is not for you. This is because the weight loss plan includes fruits which are usually forbidden on low-carb diets. While ketogenic diets have been shown to help with quick weight loss, they are also very restrictive. There are foods you will not be able to eat on a keto diet protocol. I think this is why I have not met anyone who was able to stick with a keto diet long-term. Studies show most people go back to their old ways of eating after 6 to 12 months. This is why, long-term, ketogenic diets don't appear to lead to superior weight loss.
21 Day Smoothie Diet Pros & Cons
|Emphasizes vegetables & fruits
|High in fiber, potassium & magnesium
|Shopping lists include
|You'll need a blender
|No calorie or point counting
|No supplements to take
|No processed foods
|Easy to follow. Just follow the plan
|Positive testimonials from customers
|Before & after pictures of users
|60-day money-back guarantee
What's The Verdict
The problem with most diets is a lack of guidance. The 21-day detox smoothie weight loss program by Drew Sgoutas has been designed to take the guesswork out of what and when to eat and control the calories you consume. This makes it legit in my book. If you follow the program to the letter, I believe you'll lose weight. If it's going to work for you, you'll know within 1 week. After the 3-week program is over you can start over again depending on how much weight you need to lose.