Jesus Forgives My Sins, So I Can Do Whatever I Want, Right?​

Wrong.

This blog post is going to step on some toes. It’s going to be convicting. I hope that if you feel offended by what I say in this blog post, you will recognize it as conviction rather than getting mad at me. I’ve lost friends over this topic, but the Truth has to be spoken.

Sinning vs. Living in Sin

There’s a huge difference between sinning and living in sin. We cannot continue with this topic without discussing the two. I also want to be clear about the difference, so feel free to comment a question if you have one.

What is Sin?

While the definition of sin seems to vary from pastor to pastor and from website to website, we can all agree that sin is something that goes against the Word of God. There are the 10 Commandments, which we can look to as a general list of sins to avoid committing. There are many other things that go against the Word of God, like doing drugs, watching pornography, judging others, and more. If you study the Bible and read through the Words of Jesus, you will get a great idea of what sin is. All sins are equal in God’s eyes, which is important to note as well.

Once you accept Jesus as your Savior, you should avoid sinning at all costs. As humans, sin unfortunately lives inside of us. There’s not a single human being on this planet who hasn’t sinned except Jesus Christ himself. I sin, you sin, your pastor sins, we all sin. And guess what, Jesus died for us to receive Grace, so we are forgiven for our sins. We are forgiven for the sin we committed 10 years ago, and we’re forgiven for the sin we commit in 10 years. This is great news because followers of Jesus are going to go to Heaven! But, should we take advantage of this Grace and lie, steal, cheat, do drugs, and continue to live in sin? No.

What is Living in Sin?

Living in sin is living for yourself and for the world. It’s living as if you do not believe in Jesus. You can absolutely believe in Jesus Christ but continue to live in sin, which is very important to know. Do you make zero effort to steer clear from sin and temptation? Do you still do recreational drugs and partake in sexual sin frequently? Do you wear promiscuous outfits to get the opposite gender to notice you? Do you still cuss during every single conversation you have? You may be living in sin still.

Again, we all make mistakes. To be transparent, instead of saying, “Oh my gosh,” I accidentally said, “Oh my God” just this past Friday. That’s blaspheme that I committed. As soon as it came out of my mouth, I repented for my sin because I felt horrible. If you say the ‘a’ word on complete accident one day, if you make a huge mistake and fall back into sexual addiction, as long as you truly repent for that sin, you are forgiven.

What’s the Difference?

In my opinion (which could be completely wrong and I will find out when I go to Heaven one day), sin is the accidental or unplanned mistake against the Word of God due to temptation. Once someone commits a sin, they repent for their sin because they regret defying God. Living in sin is the purposeful, way of life that defies the Word of God where frequent sinning occurs. With living in sin, there is a lack of forgiveness and repentance once sin occurs as well. I hope that makes sense. I do not want to shame a fellow sinner and make them feel as if they are living in sin when they are not.

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Jesus Forgave My Sins. Can I Live in Sin Anyways?

NO. Please do not continue to live in sin. When you continue to live in sin, you are allowing Satan to win and control your life. As a believer in Jesus, you should strive to have Him control your life and live for Him.

Will I go to Heaven Either Way?

I cannot answer this question. Only God knows the answer to this question. I can tell you what the Bible says about this topic though.

Jesus made it very clear that he forgives all sins if you accept Him as Lord and if you repent for your sins. If you remember what I said about living in sin, those people do not feel any regret for their sins, nor do they seek God for forgiveness.

“Now after John was put in prison, Jesus came to Galilee, preaching the gospel of the kingdom of God, and saying, ‘The time is fulfilled, and the kingdom of God is at hand. Repent, and believe in the gospel.’” Mark 1:14-15 NKJV

Then Peter said to them, ‘Repent, and let every one of you be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins; and you shall receive the gift of the Holy Spirit…'” Acts 2:38 NKJV

The Bible is clear, you must repent for your sins and truly feel sorry for defying God’s Word. You may be thinking. Okay, I’ll sin and just say sorry and I’ll be fine. This worldly mentality has been spoken about by Jesus Himself.

“But why do you call Me ‘Lord, Lord,’ and not do the things which I say? Whoever comes to Me, and hears My sayings and does them, I will show you whom he is like: He is like a man building a house, who dug deep and laid the foundation on the rock. And when the flood arose, the stream beat vehemently against that house, and could not shake it, for it was founded on the rock. But he who heard and did nothing is like a man who built a house on the earth without a foundation, against which the stream beat vehemently; and immediately it fell. And the ruin of that house was great.” Luke 6:46-49

So, according to Jesus, if you accept Him as Lord but continue to live in the ways of the world, you will fall like a house with no foundation. So please, stop living in sin. Hear the Word of God and change. Jesus does not say that those who continue to live for the world go to Hell, but His commands are clear. Even if Jesus said “If you continue to sin without repentance but still believe in Me, you will go to Heaven” you still shouldn’t. As a follower of Christ, you are called to put aside your life for Him.

Following vs. Believing

You have probably heard both “following Jesus” and “believing in Jesus”. Let’s be clear about this: You can believe in Jesus but not follow Him, but Jesus calls you to do both.

“Then Jesus said to His disciples, “If anyone desires to come after Me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross, and follow Me. For whoever desires to save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for My sake will find it. Matthew 16:24-25 NKJV

My goal of this blog post is to bring awareness of the difference between these two common words. Please, ask yourself, Am I following Jesus along with believing in Him? If you hesitate, you might be living in sin. The great news is, it’s never too late to change your life and be a follower of Christ. Jesus did not come to judge us, but he came to save us.

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Please feel free to let me know what you think about this topic. Did I get it right? Are there some things I didn’t get right? I hope this blog post was helpful and convicting. Jesus loves you no matter what, and I hope I made that point clear in this post. If you’re ready to dive into your relationship with God, I have a blog post that will give you a quick guide on how to get started.

10 Working From Home Tips to Keep You Productive and Happy

When God put it on my heart to work from home, one of my biggest fears was that I would become an unproductive hermit. I am also aware that I have a horrible habit of isolating myself from the world. I’m here to report that I am still an extroverted, social butterfly, who is very productive at my four jobs (praise Jesus honestly!). Here are my top 10 working from home tips so you can do the same.

1. Routine, Routine, Routine

Setting a daily or bi-daily routine was crucial for my productivity (your girl likes to watch YouTube, okay?). I highly recommend using Microsoft’s Outlook Calendar because you can use it on both your phone and computer. You can easily edit your appointments and meetings for the day, and it sends you helpful reminders for your activities coming up. I have a tangible paper planner that I use as well, but unfortunately in 2019, tangible planners can’t send you notifications.

I have just about every single activity scheduled on my calendar. Here’s a look at my daily routine according to my Outlook calendar:

6:00 AM – Coffee and Bible Time

6:45 AM – School Work

8:15 AM – Freelance Work

9:00 AM – Break or Walk (I’ll explain this later)

10:15 AM – Different Freelance Work

12:00 AM – Lunch!

1:30 PM – More Freelance Work

On Tuesdays and Thursdays, I do blog work at 3:00 PM, and just keep writing until I get writer’s block. On Mondays, Wednesdays, and Friday, I will either do more school work, or I will go do something fun like laundry or grocery shop.

Setting an hourly schedule and managing my time keeps me accountable and helps me to remember all that I have to get done in the day. I’m not going to lie, it helps my ego a little bit knowing that I got so many tasks done (I want to say I’m kidding, but I’m not).

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2. Take a Break

One of the most important working from home tips I have is this one. I take over an hour-long break to take my dog for a walk, watch YouTube, do my nails,  meet with a friend, whatever I want to do. One of the amazing things about doing freelance work is that I’m able to take long breaks like this. If you have a job where you cannot take such long breaks, then I recommend taking 15 to 20 minutes breaks throughout the day to take a quick walk around the block, pet your dog, or even just make some fresh coffee. Don’t brush this tip off, because it’s important for your mental health to take time to not focus on work.

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3. Socialize

This point is geared toward the introverts who need the extra reminder, or those like me who have a bad habit of isolating themselves. Schedule time to socialize with people other than your significant other and your dog (I’ve mentioned dogs three times already… oops). Even if this means only serving at church and talking to the cashier at the store. Make a point to socialize and have fun. I try to meet with at least one friend a week for coffee, in addition to my other socializing activities. Don’t become a hermit. Been there, done that, it’s sucky.

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4. Get the Proper Equipment

If you’re reading this, I’m guessing you work from your computer or laptop. If you are working from home, you should have a designated workspace and great equipment. After two days of working from home, I realized typing on my laptop hurt my neck and made me have a double-chin from looking down. So I ordered this Bluetooth rechargeable keyboard and this Bluetooth rechargeable (rose gold) mouse. Being comfortable and happy is priceless, but both of those combined were about $30.

5. Fill Your Kitchen Healthy Foods

Working from home gives you two opportunities. You can eat healthy because you’re not getting free donuts in the office, or you can be unhealthy and eat an entire bag of Doritos every day. Don’t even let the temptation of eating unhealthy food creep in, and stock up on cashews, veggies, hummus, and your other favorite healthy snacks.

6. Work Out

I’m sorry, I had to do it. You don’t have to go to the gym and power lift to work out. As mentioned earlier, go for a walk and get your heart rate up. Do some yoga. Go on YouTube and look up some at home workouts. Just do something to get your heart rate up.

7. Listen to Music

By music, I mean music that’s good for your soul. I love listening to worship music when I’m working. You should steer clear of worldly music anyways, but listen to uplifting music to make your workday more pleasant.

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8. Get Out of Your Pajamas

Sitting around in your pajamas is super comfortable, but it may decrease your productivity. I always feel more productive when I change out of my pajamas and start working. It can really mess with my mindset if I’m still wearing the clothes I slept it. I’m not saying put on real clothes, leggings are my daily attire, but just change your clothes to change your mindset.

9. Open Your Windows

Let the outside world break its way into your home by opening your windows. The first thing I do is open my blinds in the morning and I let the natural sunlight shine in. I find that this boosts my mood and my eyes feel better when they’re not relying on artificial light.

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10. Recognize Your Blessings

Yep, I did it again. Working from home is an incredible blessing that a lot of people wish they could do. You don’t have a long commute. You don’t have to deal with (as much) office drama. You can sing as loud as you want to. God placed you in your position, and there’s a reason for that. If you aren’t exactly pleased with working from home, then pray and ask God to guide you in your career. You got this.

Thanks for reading! I have a blog post that lists eight ways you can increase your productivity this year that you may find helpful. Do you have any working from home tips to share? Let everyone know what your secret to being productive and happy is in the comments below!

Psalm 91: Making God Your Refuge

“Whoever dwells in the shelter of the Most High will rest in the shadow of the Almighty. I will say of the Lord, ‘He is my refuge and my fortress, my God, in whom I trust.’ Surely he will save you from the fowler’s snare and from the deadly pestilence. He will cover you with his feathers, and under his wings you will find refuge; his faithfulness will be your shield and rampart. You will not fear the terror of night, nor the arrow that flies by day, nor the pestilence that stalks in the darkness, nor the plague that destroys at midday. A thousand may fall at your side, ten thousand at your right hand, but it will not come near you. You will only observe with your eyes and see the punishment of the wicked. If you say, ‘The Lord is my refuge,’ and you make the Most High your dwelling, no harm will overtake you, no disaster will come near your tent. For he will command his angels concerning you to guard you in all your ways; they will lift you up in their hands, so that you will not strike your foot against a stone. You will tread on the lion and the cobra; you will trample the great lion and the serpent. ‘Because he loves me,’ says the Lord, ‘I will rescue him; I will protect him, for he acknowledges my name. He will call on me, and I will answer him; I will be with him in trouble, I will deliver him and honor him. With long life I will satisfy him and show him my salvation.'” Psalm 91:1-16 NIV

What does it mean to make the Lord your refuge?

The Merriam-Webster dictionary defines “refuge” as a “shelter or protection from danger or distress.” Psalm 91 repeatedly tells believers to make God their refuge–their protection from distress. All throughout the Bible, you hear stories of Jesus healing, saving, and protecting His followers. He even calmed a storm and saved His disciples from dying in a boat wreck! If you believe in Jesus, you should trust Him to save you just like He did in the stories we read in the Bible.

How do you make God your refuge?

It’s human instinct to yell for help when we’re in distress. Remember when you were a kid on the playground and a huge bee flew near you? You would let out that horrifying scream that surprised every adult that such a small person could make such a horrible noise. Now that we’re older, we still find ourselves in distress. Stress from our job, anger at one of our family members, (and maybe a little bit of road rage) are some common causes of distress. When we feel that stirring in our mind that makes our hearts pound, we must take refuge in the Lord. Call on His name as soon as possible. Say, “Lord, be my refuge and protect me. Shelter me. Save me.”

When do I call on Him?

You should call on Him any time the idea pops into your head. God does not get annoyed with His followers. He wants us to call on Him and he does not get angry with us when we trust in Him. The Lord is faithful and will not abandon us because we call on Him “too much”. If you’re anything like me, you may get a little bit insecure and feel too needy when you call on God for reasons that are less than distressing or dangerous. The Truth is, the Bible calls on believers to do this in so many verses (Psalm 91 for example).

Call on God whenever you’re scared, stressed out, anxious, sad, and even when you’re happy. He cares for you greatly and will draw near to you when you call on Him.

What will happen?

Psalm 91 says, “[God] will save you from the fowler’s snare and from the deadly pestilence. He will cover you with his feathers, and under his wings you will find refuge; his faithfulness will be your shield and rampart.” These are some big promises made by the Bible. It continues to say, “no harm will overtake you, no disaster will come near your tent. For he will command his angels concerning you to guard you in all your ways; they will lift you up in their hands, so that you will not strike your foot against a stone. You will tread on the lion and the cobra; you will trample the great lion and the serpent.” I don’t know about you, but the words that I bolded are words that I find comfort in. Reading these promises make me emotional because I can feel God’s love for me.

When you call on the Lord to rescue you from whatever is causing you discomfort or distress, he promises that he will protect you. He may not deliver these promises in the way you expected. The Lord works in mysterious ways and He does have a plan for you. It may be difficult, but do not get angry with God when He does not save you “the right way”. His way is the right way.

Prayer: God, You are so good. Thank you for promising me that You will be my refuge whenever I call on You. Please help me and guide me to call on You the next time I am in a bad situation. I trust You and I want to put my comfort in You and not worldly things. Thank you, Lord. In Jesus’ name, Amen.

Did you like this devotional? Let me know what you took away from it and give me feedback in a reply below! If you’re looking to read more, try reading my blog post, “Dive Into Your Relationship with God: A Guide for Development“.

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An Honest It Works Wraps Review

One of the most popular It Works products is their Ultimate Body Applicator Wraps. I have always been wary and hesitant to try wraps that claim to have unbelievable results. As you probably know after reading my blog posts, I believe in using natural supplements to improve your body and health. When I found out that the It Works wraps are made with botanical extracts, I was excited to try it.

The following includes before and after pictures of people’s stomach areas. If you are sensitive or are avoiding those types of pictures, please do not scroll down, and exit this blog post.

The Feeling

When the wrap is on your body, it feels similar to the Vick’s Vapor Rub or Icy Hot. There’s a cooling feeling that isn’t the most relaxing feeling, but it definitely doesn’t hurt. The smell of the It Works wraps is very relaxing and smells like eucalyptus.

It Works Wrap Review

The Time

With the first application of the wrap, It Works recommends that you leave the wrap on for only 45 minutes. After your first application, you can leave it on for multiple hours. Some people leave the wrap on while they’re at work to achieve maximum results. It’s very low maintenance and with the Fab Wrap, you can trust that the wrap won’t fall off or get displaced.

The Application

It Works does not specify where you should put this product. Typically, it is applied on the stomach area, arms, and the chin area. There are amazing before and after pictures of both areas. I have only tried the It Works wrap on my stomach area so I cannot speak on the results for other areas.

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The Results

The results for this product are amazing. I saw results after my first application. I felt less bloated and my pants felt looser. However, there is no research that suggests these wraps lead to permanent weight loss. From my experience, I believe the wraps tighten the target area up, but after you shower, the results diminish. With that being said, they are great for events like weddings, military balls, birthday parties, etc. What I’m trying to say is–the wraps work. The before and after pictures are real, but results are not permanent.

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The Price

These wraps are pricey. When you purchase them at a retail price, you get four wraps for $99 which is about $25 per wrap. When you become an It Work Loyal Customer, you get four wraps for $59, which is $14.75 per wrap. When you look at the results of having the wrap on for just one hour, the price may be worth it. When you leave the wraps on for multiple hours, the results are incredible. I would save the wraps for special events where you will be taking pictures or need to fit into that old dress again.

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Have you tried this product before? Let me know what you think about it in the comments below!

Disclaimer: I am an Independent Distributor of It Works. All of the opinions I state in this blog post are real and honest. I hope I made it very obvious that this is an unbiased review by pointing out the positives and negatives of the product. I believe in having strong integrity over making money. The links provided will bring you to my It Works website. If you purchase something with my link, I will receive a commission. Feel free to contact me if you have any questions or concerns.

7 Jobs for College Students (Easy!)

College is the best time to have a side hustle. With our irregular school hours, it can be hard to find a job that works with your schedule. Here are 10 jobs that are perfect for college students (you can do most from your phone!).

1. Start a Blog

I’m writing this blog post from my phone! You may not make money from your blog right away, but once you get a good following, you will! Blogs are also a great way to creatively express yourself. Find what you’re passionate about, and just write!

2. Get an Internship

Typically, internships designed for college students are very flexible with hours. Internships look great on your resumé as well!

3. Do Freelance Work

If you have a talent that you can turn into freelance work, take advantage of that! Whether it be graphic design or voice overs, log on to Fiverr or Upwork and create a listing! You can choose your hours with freelance work, you just have to get your jobs completed on time.

4. Become an Independent Distributor

I’m an independent distributor for It Works. I can do all of my work directly from my phone. If you’re interested in joining my team, click the hyperlink, and click “Join” on the left side! It’s the perfect college student job because we always have our phones on us.

5. Babysit

I know babysitting can seem like a high school student’s job, but it’s still a great option for college students. Find a great babysitting job by going on Care.com so you can make a quick buck!

6. Get a Job at Your University

Most colleges are required to be flexible with your hours when you become an employee. They are also required to hire a certain number of students each year, which makes your chances of getting a position even higher! Be sure to only apply to positions that pertain to your major though!

7. Apply to a Coffee Shop

The coffee shops in my college town are pretty much ran by college students. They are a cozy place to work and once you’re done with your shift, you can just plop down at a table and start studying. The discount on caffeine is really nice too!

An Honest It Works Keto Coffee Review

I was so surprised to see the lack of blog posts on It Works products! The It Works company is spreading so fast because of their high-quality products. Their most talked about product is their Keto Coffee. The It Works Keto Coffee is an instant coffee that helps you stay in ketosis. You can also get the product in K-Cups which is in a salted caramel flavor. The following is my honest review of the It Works Keto Coffee.

The Taste

I’m not on the keto diet because I have very high LDL cholesterol. Luckily for those of us who are on the low-cholesterol diet train, it only has 3% of the recommended daily value. If you are used to drinking bulletproof coffee for a keto, then you will enjoy this coffee! Don’t expect the It Works Keto Coffee to taste like a classic cup of Joe. It’s very fatty, which is expected as a keto coffee. The K-Cup form is in salted caramel flavor which will be enjoyable if you have a Keruig. If you don’t like the taste of the powder form, you can add your classic creamer, a few drops of Stevia, or the It Works Ketones Creamer.

It Works Keto Coffee Review

The Ingredients

To find the ingredients on any It Works product, scroll down to the very bottom of the webpage, and click “View Product Info“. There are eight ingredients in the It Works Keto Coffee. Two are the most popular fats used in keto coffee, being Medium Chain Triglyceride (MCT) oil powder and grass-fed butter powder. Two other ingredients are coffee powder and green coffee beans. There’s some collagen in there to help your skin to look youthful and your hair shiny, and there’s some amazing Himalayan pink salt. The last two ingredients are the ones I really want to talk about. Xanthan gum and Silicon dioxide.

Dr. Axe has a great blog post about xanthan gum and what exactly it is. It often acts as an alternative to gluten, which many people are intolerant to. Let’s be honest, silicon dioxide sounds scary! Did you know that silicon dioxide is found in bell peppers, oatmeal, beets, and many other foods? It acts as an anti-clumping agent for powders (like instant coffee!). According to research, silicon dioxide is no threat to us, it just helps our powders last longer.

After looking into those last two, I’m really happy with the ingredients. Instead of using cheap table salt, It Works uses mineral-rich Himalayan pink salt. They also opted for grass-fed butter, rather than cheap butter from unhappy cows.

It Works Keto Coffee Review

The Health Benefits

As mentioned above, I’m not on a keto diet (been there, done that, not going back). I had a really hard time processing all of that fat with my high cholesterol levels. I do however practice intermittent fasting (IF). IF helps your body go into ketosis and rely on your fat and ketones for energy. I often times break my fast with a piece of beef jerky or a low-carb food so my body stays in ketosis for a longer amount of time. This coffee will continue to keep my body in ketosis, giving me a boost of energy once I have just finished fasting.

The Price

The retail price for 15 servings is $65. That’s a little over $4 per serving, which is still cheaper than most of Starbucks’ menu. If you become a Loyal Customer, you will get 40% off all It Works products. That makes the price for 15 servings $39. That brings each serving to $2.60! That is way cheaper than Starbucks, and it’s easier to get ahold of first thing in the morning! You are also helping your independent distributor to make a living by your purchase.

Whether or not you’re on the keto diet, the It Works Keto Coffee can be a great option for your early morning energy boost. Many people have seen great results with the product. Let me know if you’re going to try it out!

Disclaimer: I am an Independent Distributor of It Works. All of the opinions I state in this blog post are real and honest. I hope I made it very obvious that this is an unbiased review by pointing out the positives and negatives of the product. I believe in having strong integrity over making money. The links provided will bring you to my It Works website. If you purchase something with my link, I will receive a commission. Feel free to contact me if you have any questions or concerns.

I also have a blog post about the It Works Wraps. I go through everything about the wraps (even the smell!) As always, I’m completely honest with my reviews, so if you are considering purchasing the product, go check that blog post out! I also cover the It Works Cleanse and what I think about it that you can find here.

5 Foods That Really Help with OCD and Anxiety​

I was diagnosed with OCD when I was 12 years old. If you’re reading this, chances are you have OCD too (the actual OCD, not the one Buzzfeed writers pretend to have).

I wrote a blog post touching on the topic of minimizing anxiety through the use of natural supplements. OCD, being an anxiety disorder, can be minimized through those supplements that I mention as well. But what about food? What foods can help minimize the frustrating symptoms of OCD?

1. Beans

As mentioned in my supplement blog post, Inositol works wonders for people with anxiety disorders. A great way to increase your daily intake of Inositol is to eat beans. According to this article by Livestrong, 100 grams of navy and lima beans can provide you up to 65 milligrams of Inositol!

2. Chocolate

Yes. Chocolate helps reduce OCD and anxiety symptoms because it reduces cortisol, also known as the stress hormone. High cortisol is directly related to an increase in anxiety, because anxiety is triggered when your brain is sensing stress or a threat. Dark chocolate, specifically, is high in zinc and magnesium! Y’all better not pick on me for eating an excessive amount of chocolate now!

3. Almonds

Almonds are very high in zinc, which plays a large role in mood balance. Studies show that those who severely deficient in zinc tend to have lower serotonin levels.

4. Whole Grains

Whole grains like rice, quinoa, and oats are very high in both magnesium and zinc, which both help to balance serotonin levels. They also provide you with many other nutrients that are important for your overall health.

5. Leafy Greens

Everyone tells you that you should be eating more leafy greens. It can get annoying because it’s hard to get past the earthy flavor of greens like spinach and kale, but they really are good for you. I put this super green powder in my smoothies, and it’s very easy to hide the taste of it with fruit or chocolate protein powder.