Wednesday, December 6, 2023

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    5 simple smoothie recipes that are still full for meals

    Smoothies seem to be the poster child for “healthy eating” and many people grab one as a substitute for breakfast or other meals. But without proper planning, it’s easy to turn that simple smoothie into a lack of nutrition.

    As a dietitian, I’ve worked with a lot of clients who would tell me they just mix fruit with water or almond milk and have it for breakfast. Then they will feel hungry soon after and throughout the day. Many of them will then eat more than they feel comfortable during the meal because they don’t absorb enough nutrients in the early hours.

    Just to be clear, I’m not here to break anyone’s smoothie game. I make smoothies regularly and think they can be a quick and easy way to fuel your body and mind while satisfying mealtime hunger — as long as you keep a few in mind. main point. The good news is that if you love smoothies, they can be a complete meal with the right planning!

    The first thing to keep in mind is whether your smoothie is strong enough to be considered a meal—that is, is it comparable to what you’re getting for a non-smoothie meal? ? Calorie needs vary widely based on a number of factors, so it’s difficult to give a definite number to hit. Perhaps a more helpful way to determine if you’ve hit that benchmark is if your smoothie keeps you satisfied for at least three hours and contains a good amount of each of the key macronutrients. (More on that below!) I don’t usually recommend counting calories, but if you have a history of dieting and restrictions, it can be helpful to have some calorie awareness to make sure you don’t get burned. lack of calories. In that case, I recommend a minimum 400-calorie smoothie if you’re taking one as a meal.

    Back to the macronutrients: You also want to make sure you’re incorporating a good source of carbohydrates, protein, and fat into each smoothie. Food groups work together to keep you satisfied until your next snack or meal, so a smoothie that lets you combine all at once is likely to make a better meal. . Choose at least one food from each category for an additional smoothie. (Also, add in some of your other favorites like leafy greens, cocoa powder, and spices for an extra kick!)

    Carbohydrates: Any fruit, uncooked oatmeal flour, cooked butternut squash, cooked sweet potato.
    Protein: Yogurt/kefir, milk (dairy, soy, or pea), silken tofu, protein powder.
    Fats: Full-fat yogurt, avocado, nuts and seeds, nut butters.

    Now, if you’re not planning on making smoothies for your meals, you can loosen up a little bit with these guidelines. If you just want to enjoy your smoothie as a mid-day snack, something as simple as fruit mixed with almond milk is perfectly fine.

    Here are five simple smoothie recipes that I’ve loved throughout the year — none with more than six ingredients, many of which you probably already have in your pantry, fridge, or freezer. freezer. These formulas put everything you’ve read above into context. Simply combine in a blender, blend together and add water as needed to get the consistency you love best.

    Bright Red Beet Smoothie

    1 cup soy, pea, or dairy milk
    1 medium-sized beet, peeled and cooked
    1 medium banana
    1 cup blackberries
    1 tbsp. flaxseeds

    Beets add a bright pop of color to smoothies and pair perfectly with your favorite berries, bananas, and dairy bases. Sprinkle with some flaxseed for a dose of omega-3 fats.

    Tangy Strawberry Smoothie

    1 cup soy, pea, or dairy milk
    ¾ cup full-fat Greek yogurt
    ½ cup silken tofu
    1 cup frozen strawberries
    ½ banana
    2 tbsp. chia seeds
    Silken tofu is a great way to add an extra dose of protein to smoothies. It blends well, making for a bright and creamy summer smoothie!

    Sweet Potato Cinnamon Smoothie

    1 cup soy, pea, or dairy milk
    ¾ cup full-fat Greek yogurt
    ½ cup cooked sweet potato or butternut squash
    1 small banana
    ¼ tsp. cinnamon

    Sweet potatoes add a subtle sweetness to this luscious smoothie, and the cinnamon gives it a cooling boost. Perfect for cooler weather, this protein-rich smoothie will keep you full for hours.

    Bright Green Mango Smoothie

    1 cup soy, pea, or dairy milk
    2 cups uncooked spinach
    1 cup frozen mango
    ¼ avocado
    1 tbsp. chia seeds
    Avocados add an extra layer of cream to this green smoothie. If made with frozen mangoes, you can enjoy them year-round, not just off-season. Mix in some chia seeds for extra fiber and protein.

    Mixed Berry and Zucchini Smoothie

    1½ cups mixed berries
    1 cup uncooked chopped zucchini
    ¾ cup Greek yogurt
    2 tbsp. walnuts
    ¼ avocado
    Zucchini is another vegetable that blends well and doesn’t have any weird aftertaste. Add a handful of walnuts to the blender for an extra omega-3, protein, and fiber boost.

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