Healthiest Things To Put In A Smoothie
I am a huge fan of smoothies. In fact, I drink one every morning! I love that smoothies can give you a healthy boost first thing at the start of the day. You can add ingredients that you wouldnt normally eat on their own. For example, I love to add raw zucchini to my morning smoothies. Yes, it might sound weird but you cant even taste it and I love the consistency that it creates.
My goal is always to load up on as many vegetables as possible with a very small amount of fruit. Especially if youre having a smoothie in the morning as this will set the tone for the day. The less fruit you have, the slower the smoothie will take to digest. This means a longer lasting energy versus a blood sugar spike and crash. Have you ever started yawning at 10 am and dont even know why? Youre not tired, but are yawning non-stop? Its because of your blood sugar. So to help balance that out you want to have smoothies with more greens and less fruit.
Lemon Kale Protein Detox
Putting lemon in your blender is like taking out a nutrition insurance policy for your smoothie. That’s because a significant percentage of the antioxidant polyphenols in any food or drink break down before they reach your bloodstream. But researchers at Purdue University discovered that adding lemon juice to the equation helped preserve the polyphenols.
- Â½ lemon, peeled and seeded
- Â½ frozen banana
- Â½ cup unsweetened almond milk
- 1 scoop plain plant-based protein powder
- 3 ice cubes
- Water to blend
NUTRITION: 254 calories / 7 g fat / 20 g carbs / 5 g fiber / 10 g sugar / 30 g protein
How To Make A Smoothie
Im a BIG fan of smoothie recipes that are EASY and simple. To me, half the point of a smoothie is to have a delicious and nutritious meal/ snack that can be made in 5 minutes TOPS.
So making a healthy smoothie is easy around here. Step 1: gather your ingredients. Step 2: add those ingredients to your blender. Step 3: BLEND until creamy, adding a little extra liquid if needed to get your blender going. Step 4: Pour and ENJOY!
Its absolutely that easy to make a smoothie which is why I LOVE having them on a daily basis.
If youre brand new to smoothies: I suggest following a few recipes first. Once youve made a good handful of them, you can start really experimenting with new flavor combos and ratios of ingredients. Have fun with it!
Looking to add more greens to your smoothies?? Try freezing the greens using THIS TUTORIAL!
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How To Build A Better Smoothie According To A Nutritionist
If youre turning to smoothies as part of your strategy to lose weight or take your healthy eating up a notch, your menu may need a little attention. Done right, smoothies can make nutritious sense, packing satisfying ingredients along with fiber, vitamins, minerals and other health-protecting substances. But even some of the most healthful smoothie ingredients can add up to a lot of calories and therefore, interfere with your weight loss goals or worse, lead to unintentional weight gain. Read on to find out if youre making some common smoothie mistakes, discover how to build the best smoothie and find nutritionist-approved recipes to get your smoothie-making up to speed.
Secrets To The Best Healthy Smoothies
- ADD A CREAMY INGREDIENT My favorite thing to add to a smoothie is 1/2 of an avocado. It adds the perfect creamy consistency that I cant get enough of. I just love it.
- FREEZE YOUR BANANAS This trick will take your smoothie from a 7 to a 10. Chop a banana into three pieces and freeze them on a baking sheet for 2 hours. After that, place it in a freezer bag. Then use these frozen pieces to add to your smoothies. This will make your smoothie extra cold and creamy. Its totally delicious.
- TRY ZUCCHINI OR CAULIFLOWER No really! Both have no added taste in your smoothie but will provide added nutrition. In fact, I used both in my smoothie this morning and couldnt taste either one. Theres no need to cook them as both can be added to the blender raw. Start with 1/2 of a zucchini , or one cup of cauliflower florets.
- ALWAYS ADD PROTEIN Protein will give you that long-lasting energy. You can use protein powder, hemp seeds, chia seeds, flax seeds or seed butter all are great protein sources.
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What Are The Health Benefits Of Fruits And Vegetables In A Juice Cleanse
- Kale insanely low in calories, powerful anti-oxidant with anti-inflammatory properties, and helpful for arthritis and autoimmune diseases
- Spinach the beauty of spinach lies in how easy it is to disguise the taste. Its mild tasting yet packed with vitamins, has anti-cancerous properties, and is one of the healthiest foods on the planet
- Cucumber since its 95% water, its an incredible detoxifier and helps with liver and kidney function
- Lemon one of the most important items to stock in your kitchen as its a highly effective cleansing agent and cuts through the bitterness of greens
- Carrots – known for being a good source of beta-carotene, fiber, vitamin K, and potassium. Carrots have been linked to lower cholesterol levels and improved eye health
- Celery – low in calories since it is mostly water. It is a low-glycemic food and a good source of dietary fiber, Vitamin A, Vitamin C, and Vitamin K.
- Beets – contain nutrients that may help lower your blood pressure, fight inflammation, and support detoxification.
- Apples – “an apple a day keeps the doctor away” is a famous saying for good reason. Helps to fight inflammation and heart health.
- Oranges – immune system booster since it is high in Vitamin C and low in calories.
- Turmeric anti-inflammatory and anti-oxidant properties
- Ginger aids in digestion and supports the immune system
Whats The Best Liquid For Making Smoothies
We like to use milk of choice. If youre a fan of coconut milk, use it. Like cows milk? Go for it. A fan of almond milk? Cool. Use whatever milk you like in your smoothiesyou cant go wrong. I just recommend you stick to unsweetened and unflavored versions. That gives you the most control over the smoothie.
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How To Store Leftover Smoothie
If you make a smoothie and find that you have some leftover, by all means store it for later!
To Refrigerate: You can place leftovers in small lidded jars, filling all the way to the brim, and store in the fridge for up to 24 hours in most cases. Blend the smoothie again before serving.
To Freeze: Pour the leftover smoothie into ice cube trays, and freeze. Then pack the smoothie ice cubes into a zip-top bag. . Seal the bag, pressing out as much air as possible before you seal it. Freeze for up to 3 months. Serve the smoothie again by giving it a quick blend!
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Storing And Freezing Instructions
- To store: Freshly made smoothies should be enjoyed immediately, however, they will keep well for up to eight hours refrigerated. Be sure to whisk the smoothie in case of any separation.
- To freeze: Smoothies can be frozen in blocks and stored in the freezer for up to two months. When ready to enjoy, remove the smoothie block from the freezer and re-blend it until smooth. To thin it out, you can add some water, milk, or juice.
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How Often Should You Add Smoothies To Your Diet
Even though well-made smoothies can totally serve as meal replacements, Maeng doesnt recommend replacing all whole-food meals with liquid ones. “If it is a well-balanced smoothie, I say you can incorporate it daily,” she says. “But if you are drinking smoothies two to three times per day and skipping meals for weight loss, I would not recommend it. It takes a few minutes to drink a glass of smoothie but to eat those calories from whole foods, it will take much longer. And chewing and swallowing action gives you much greater satisfaction from the meal.”
If weight loss isnt the goal but you want to work on your fruit and veggie intake, once-a-day smoothies are a great addition to your diet. If you have no issues with packing in all of your nutrition via meals and snacks then they can be consumed whenever you feel inclined to whiz one up, Mitsios concludes.
Is Having A Smoothie For Breakfast Healthy
Yes! But as we discussed earlier in this post, not all smoothies are created equal. I highly recommend a green smoothie in the morning, with minimal fruit. This is my favorite morning green smoothie recipe.
If youre going to use fruit, stick to berries like blueberries, raspberries, or strawberries and banana. Try measuring your fruit and using 1/2 cup or less in total. This will help to prevent a blood sugar spike.
Fruit smoothies like the ones Ill share below are best enjoyed as an afternoon treat. I love to share one with my daughter after school. Either way, making your own smoothies at home are way more healthy than the store-bought versions!
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Do Smoothies Aid Weight Loss
Smoothies are frequently marketed as a weight loss tool.
Research suggests they may be effective for this purpose as long as theyre not causing you to exceed your daily calorie needs.
While some people find smoothies an easy way to monitor food portions and stay on top of their weight loss goals, others may not feel as full when they drink their calories rather than eating them.
That said, several small studies demonstrate that smoothies used as meal replacements can be as filling as solid foods, and that drinking calories instead of chewing them doesnt necessarily lead to overeating when solid foods are consumed later .
Drinking versus chewings effect on your feelings of fullness may be more closely related to how satisfying you expect the meal to be rather than the form of the food itself.
One small study found that people who viewed a large serving of fruit prior to drinking a fruit smoothie felt fuller and more satisfied afterward, compared with people who viewed a small serving of fruit prior to drinking the smoothie .
This occurred even though both groups consumed an equal amount of calories and nutrients from the smoothie.
Ultimately, although weight loss can be a complex process with many contributing factors, its important to expend more calories than you take in. If a smoothie helps you offset other calories you would otherwise consume, it can be an effective weight loss tool.
What’s The Best Time To Drink A Smoothie
The morning is a great time to enjoy a smoothie as it provides a very easy portable breakfast option. Adding something like oats along with fruits and vegetables such as berries and baby spinach can increase your fiber and vegetable intake very quickly. Also, they’re a great way to continue your body’s reparative state from sleeping: “It helps me continue to cleanse from the night before while keeping me full and satisfied for hours,” celebrity nutritionist Kelly LeVeque explains.
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How To Make A Fruit Smoothie
Making a fruit smoothie is as simple as tossing ingredients in a blender and letting it rip, but we want to make sure you succeed every time, so heres our exact process:
What Are The Healthiest Things To Put Into Smoothies
For many people, smoothies are a meal in itself. Using a combination of fiber, protein, and healthy fats will ensure you remain fuller for longer. Here are some healthy ideas to add to your smoothie.
- Fruit Fresh or frozen fruit. Berries, pineapple, apples, bananas, mango, coconut and dates.
- Vegetables Spinach, kale, carrots, and even frozen cauliflower add extra nutrients, color, and barely add any flavors.
- Nuts and seeds Peanuts, almonds, cashews, sunflower seeds, and pumpkin seeds. Nut butters and seed butters are also fantastic, especially peanut butter or almond butter.
- Dairy Greek yogurt, cottage cheese, ricotta cheese, and even quark.
- Protein powder Add a protein boost with a scoop of protein powder .
- Grains Rolled oats, quinoa flakes, or barley flakes.
Add Extras To Your Liking
There are so many amazing things that you can add to a smoothie to increase it’s nutritional bang for your sip, though you don’t have to add anything at all. I keep all kinds of “superfoods” around and throw in what sounds good. I’ll normally add 2 or 3 “extras” to my smoothie each morning. Different things that I like to add include: hemp seed hearts, flax seeds, chia seeds, spirulina, organic brown rice protein powder, pea protein, and/or cacao nibs. Other people also add things like goji berries, matcha powder, and bee pollen, but I haven’t dabbled in those yet.
They’re Great For Breakfast Or An Afternoon Pick
Smoothies are a convenient and colorful way to start your day, but some recipes can be filled with added sugar and fat. For a healthy meal or snack, stick to the basics: fruit and veggies.
Every successful smoothie contains two main ingredients: fruit and/or vegetables and a liquid, such as fruit juice, vegetable juice, or milk. Other possible ingredients include yogurt, nut butter, seeds, spices, herbs, and more. Many smoothies also include a few ice cubes to keep the mixture nice and cold. Often, recipes can be tweaked to meet different dietary requirements or tastesfeel free to swap out dairy products for non-dairy ones or change up the spices and juices.
All of these smoothies recipes are loaded with good-for-you vitamins, minerals, antioxidants, fiber, and protein. They’re made with only natural ingredients and range in flavors from mango to chocolate to veggie. You’re sure to find a breakfast smoothie for every day of the week.
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How Can I Interest My Kids In Healthy Smoothies
The biggest way to get kids on board with anything is to make it fun and involve them!
- Set up a smoothie bar: Let your kids help with selecting what ingredients go into the smoothies, and also choosing fun and healthy toppings, like chia seeds, flax meal, sliced almonds, and fresh fruit! They will be more likely to try it if its their creation!
- Play smoothie shop: On weekend mornings, or whenever you have time. Play smoothie shop with your kids! Let them take your order, and help make the smoothies as much as they are able to, by age.
- Ask for their help in the kitchen!: Kids are amazing helpers, especially in the kitchen! They are naturally curious, and love to spend time together. Nurture this, and show them all of your favorite healthy cooking tips!
- Work in your garden/ get groceries as a family: My daughter has always loved helping in the garden. Its a great time to discuss our food and where it comes from! If you arent able to take your little ones to the grocery store, let them help you compile the grocery list.
- Read about fruits and veggies: There are tons of childrens books on about fruits, veggies, farming, and eating healthy!
How Do You Make A Strawberry Smoothie
While its hard to go wrong putting yummy things in a blender, there is an order to the process that works well. I recommend starting with the liquid on the bottom, to help with pureeing, and layering the other ingredients in order from soft to firm. See more tips on How to Make a Smoothie here!
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Homemade Frozen Smoothie Packs
Smoothie packs are pre-packaged including everything that would found in a typical smoothie. All you do is blend it all together when you want to enjoy a smoothie.
Skip the expensive store-bought kinds and make your own. Simply add your favorite frozen fruit, vegetables, ice blocks and/or frozen milk blocks and keep in the freezer until ready to drink!