One of the most common questions I get asked is about what should go in a smoothie? All too often smoothies are loaded with sugar and not a lot of substance, leaving you feeling hungry quickly after! With a few simple tweaks, you can build a healthy smoothie with more staying powder!
There are three keys to building a filling smoothie that can tie you over for a significant amount of time, they are a good dose of protein, a healthy fat, and fiber! Start by making sure all three pieces are there and you are sure to have a smoothie that will keep you full!
1. PICK YOUR PROTEIN
Whey, Pea-based, Egg-based, Beef, Casein
DAIRY: Low fat Cottage cheese ½-1 Cup OR Plain Greek Low-Fat Yogurt ½-1 Cup
2. HEALTHY FATS
Fat keeps you full. Important to have at meal times.
Nut Butter: 1-2 T
Chia/Hemp Seeds: 1-2 T
Ground Flax Seeds: 1-2 T
Coconut Flakes: 1-2 T
Raw Nuts: ¼ cup
Avocado: 1/4 piece
3. BEVERAGE CHOICES
Almond, Cashew, Coconut, Hemp, Walnut, Pea, or Soy Milk, Macadamia, or 1%/2% Cow’s milk; Coconut Water; Plain water
4. ADD FIBER
Vegetables: Fresh or Frozen Kale, spinach, beets, or carrots
Fruit: Fresh or Frozen—Blueberries, strawberries, cherries, bananas, peaches, dates
Try adding: Cinnamon, vanilla, ginger, turmeric, or Stevia, and ice—for a little extra something
THE Three Key Ingredients
PROTEIN; You want to make sure you have healthy protein in your smoothie. Protein helps initiate satiety hormones which tell you are full, meaning when you add protein to your smoothie it automatically will keep you fuller longer. Protein also takes more energy to break down, increase the calories you expend digesting that meal.
ADD HEALTHY FAT: The biggest mistake people make when trying to replace a meal with a smoothie is forgetting the healthy fat. Healthy fat is also responsible for keeping you fuller for longer. Plus, healthy fats make the smoothie creamier and taste better.
GET A PUNCH OF FIBER: Most people load their smoothies with fruit and forget all about the protein, healthy fat, and fiber. Fiber is important to keep our digestive systems running smooth and to keep us full. Try limiting fruit to 1/2 to 1 cup and getting extra fiber by doubling the number of veggies you use. You can get adventurous, but I think the easiest to add veggies with minimal effect on flavor is spinach and carrots!