Smoothies are trendy right now with good reason. Smoothies can provide nutrients for your body in a quick and easy way. However, there are foods to avoid when you are making your healthy smoothie.
Do you enjoy a delicious, healthy smoothie for breakfast or lunch? Do you find it an easy way to get more leafy greens, superfoods and fruits into your diet?
Smoothies are known for being filled with nutrition, but that is only if you avoid unhealthy ingredients that are loaded with sugar and artificial additives.
- Sugar. Do not add white sugar, agave nectar or artificial sweeteners to your smoothies. If you must add a sweetener, then consider a drop or two of stevia, a teaspoon of monk fruit or a little raw honey. The more you drink non-sweetened smoothies, the more you will get used to the taste and enjoy the natural sweetness of fruits you add to your smoothie. Medjool dates are another natural sweetener option.
- Dairy Milk. Too many people are sensitive to dairy. Get used to using coconut milk or water, almond milk or other nut milks such as a homemade cashew milk. It may be best to avoid soy milk as well. Most store-bought soy milk is loaded with extra sugar. Most soy is now GMO, and soy can also raise your estrogen and lead to estrogen dominance.
- Fruit Juices. Most fruit juice from the store is loaded with sugar. Instead, just add a piece of fresh or frozen fruit.
- Ice cream. Most ice creams are loaded with sugar and other artificial ingredients and add little nutrition. Instead enjoy the creaminess of full-fat coconut milk. Good protein powders also add to the creaminess of a smoothie. You can also add a half of an avocado to make it thick with a creamy texture.
- Cheap protein powders. Not all protein powders are created equally. Look for protein powders that are made from only a few ingredients with low sugar or stevia. These usually will cost a little more but are worth it for your health.
- Cool whip or whipped cream. These add no nutrition to your smoothie. Allow your taste buds to get used to not having these in a smoothie, and you won’t even miss them.
- Chocolate syrup. If you want your smoothie to have a chocolate taste, add cacao powder or cacao nibs. They are less processed so have the most nutrition. Chocolate syrup is mostly sugar.
- Peanut butter. Most store-bought peanut butter is filled with sugar. (Are you seeing a theme?) Most processed peanut butter is now GMO as well. Peanuts are not nuts, but legumes. Your better bet is to add nuts such as almonds, cashews, walnuts or pecans. If it must have the taste of peanuts, just add a handful of raw, non-GMO peanuts.
Smoothies can be a healthy part of a healthy diet, however, stay away from the foods above. The above ingredients just add sugar, artificial ingredients, and really….no nutrition.
Create healthy smoothies with a healthy liquid base, a fruit for sweet (berries have the least sugar but a banana, mango or pineapple can help you transition from sugar sweet smoothies that are more like shakes), as many leafy greens as you like, healthy fats such as coconut, avocados, and nuts, fiber foods such as flax, hemp seeds, and chia seeds, and superfoods such as mulberries, goji berries, lingonberry, turmeric, cinnamon or Spirulina. Have fun and experiment.
Remember that many smoothies you buy at a smoothie store are filled with sugars and other ingredients to avoid. If you are purchasing one from a store, don’t be afraid to request whole foods and no sugar or sweeteners and juices added.
Now go enjoy a healthy smoothie. Make it as green as you can.
Join the Savvy Circle, a closed Facebook group to support women living a healthy life. When you join, you will get a 7 Day Low-Sugar Smoothie Challenge with yummy recipes.
Follow my Smoothie Pinterest Board for smoothie recipes.