Smoothies have become a great, quick meal alternative for a refreshing summer morning. Smoothies can offer added health benefits more than traditional breakfast because you can load them with a variety of fruits, vegetables, protein, and vitamins and minerals.
Smoothies not only rejuvenate you, but also give you a cool tasty way to beat the summer heat!
These versatile beverages are portable, family-friendly, and modifiable for any taste or dietary preference. They are easy to prepare yourself as well.
While some types are loaded with veggies and fruit, others are packed with sugar & unhealthy ingredients. As such, you may wonder whether they’re a healthy choice.
This article describes everything you need to know about smoothies including their potential health benefits and downsides, weight loss potential, and tips for making nutritionally balanced versions at home.
Potential Smoothie Ingredients?
Fruits : Strawberries, Apples, Blueberries, mangos, bananas, pineapple, cherries and peaches
Vegetables : If you don’t mind the green color, adding a handful of spinach or kale is a good way to bring more antioxidants to your drink. This is especially useful for those looking to improve their digestion. These greens also give your smoothie more body and the flavor for a small serving is virtually undetectable when paired with fruit.
Nuts and seeds : Some people like the addition of oats or other fibre-rich grains in their smoothies - Chia, sesame, sunflower, flaxseed, pumpkin seeds, and wheat germ,
Liquid : water, milk, non-dairy milk, coconut water, iced coffee or tea, and juice.
Sweeteners : syrup, sugar, honey, pitted dates, stevia, ice cream.
Herbs and Spices : cinnamon, cocoa powder, basil, parsley, ginger
Others : vanilla extract, soaked oats, cooked white beans, yogurts, chocolate
Smoothies can be a great way to incorporate more healthy foods into your diet. The difference between a healthy and unhealthy smoothie largely depends on the quality and quantity of its ingredients. Smoothies biggest pitfall is their propensity to contain large quantities of added sugar. It’s best to use the natural sugars already existing in many different food groups.
Below are a few considerations:
> Prevents dehydration : Having smoothies along with breakfast is a great way to replenish the loss of water in your body during the summer.
> Makes you feel full : People trying to lose weight often skip morning meals and end up snaking on food in larger amounts between meals. To avoid this, experts advise having smoothies made with fresh ingredients.
> Source of antioxidants : Green tea is a popular source of antioxidants. You can add matcha green tea powder to make your smoothies rich in antioxidants, which will strengthen your immune system. Grapes, berries and sweet potatoes are a natural source of antioxidants as well.
> Boosts brain power : It is quite evident that certain fruits and vegetables increase brain focus and memory. Mental alertness and concentration is greatly enhanced by ingredients like coconut that are rich in omega-3 fatty acids.
> Builds calcium : A regular intake of calcium in the right amount is essential for bone and tooth health. Moreover, it can affect hair growth and heart functioning too. Smoothies prepared with diary alternatives like almond milk serve as a great source of calcium for the body.
Healthy Smoothie Recipes:
Super-Simple Summer Smoothie
1/4 c. milk (dairy or nondairy)
1/2 c. plain yogurt
2 c. fresh summer fruit (blackberries, raspberries, hulled strawberries, chopped peaches, and/or nectarines), chilled
1 c. unsweetened almond milk
1 frozen banana
1/2 c. frozen blueberries
2 tbsp. almond butter
1 c. coconut water
1 medium ripe banana
2 c. baby spinach
1 c. each frozen mango and pineapple