This article is shared with permission from our friends at newhealthadvisor.com.
A smoothie is a drink similar to a shake in that it is thick and blended. Unlike a shake, it is made from fruits, vegetables, and liquids. The base of a smoothie is usually yogurt, milk, or juice but they can be made entirely from fruit. Grain or oatmeal can be added to thicken the smoothie. Other flavors like honey can be added. Protein powder can also be added for both taste and nutrition. And it can really help to boost your diet.
According to FoodMatters.tv:
Smoothies consist of the entire fruit or vegetable, skin and all and contain all of the fiber from the vegetables. However, the blending process breaks the fiber apart (which makes the fruit and vegetables easier to digest) but also helps create a slow, even release of nutrients into the blood stream and avoids blood sugar spikes.
When made correctly, a smoothie can stand in for a meal, making it a convenient alternative for your busy days. Check out these meal replacement smoothie recipes.
Meal Replacement Smoothies
1. Mint Chip Matcha Smoothie
Serves 1 person
- 1 frozen ripe banana
- 1 tablespoon matcha powder
- 1 tablespoon chia seeds
- 1/2 an avocado
- 2 sprigs of mint
- 1 handful of spinach
- 1 cup unsweetened vanilla almond milk
- 1 heaping tablespoon of cacao nibs
- Put all ingredients except for the cacao nibs into a blender and blend until it is smooth and creamy.
- Add the cacao nibs and blend for another second.
Nutrition Facts: 288 calories, 18.8g fat (2g saturated), 152mg sodium, 31.3g carbs, 9g fiber, 11g sugars, 5.2g protein.
The mint and matcha powder make this one of the most brilliant meal replacement smoothies. Matcha is a type of tea full of antioxidants and metabolism boosting compounds. This shake is sweetened with banana, made smooth by avocado and almond milk, and is topped off with cacao nibs to substitute for chocolate chips.
2. Radish Detox Shake
Serves 2 people
- 1 bunch of radishes
- 1/2 cup of mixed sunflower, alfalfa, and radish sprouts
- 1/2 cup chopped radish leaves
- 1 ripe banana
- 1/2 cup raspberries
- 1/2 cup strawberries
- 11/2 cup coconut water
- 1/2 cup Thai style coconut milk
- A pinch of pink Himalaya salt
- Stevia to taste (optional)
- 4-5 ice cubes if you use fresh berries
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- Place radishes, leaves, and sprouts in the blender.
- Add coconut water and process for 30 seconds.
- Add berries, banana, and coconut milk. Process until it is smooth.
- Add ice now if needed.
- Add salt and stevia if desired. Process for 15 seconds.
Nutrition Facts: 197 calories, 2.5g fat (1.2g saturated), 191mg sodium, 32.6g carbs, 9.2g fiber, 18g sugars, 6g protein
This meal replacement smoothie employs a very underused food, the radish. While it’s not a traditional super food like kale, spinach, and bananas, it does offer a low calorie drink which helps reduce bad cholesterol and insulin and boosts good cholesterol.
3. Skinny Banana Almond Butter Smoothie
Serves 2 people
- 2 bananas, frozen
- 1 cup unsweetened vanilla almond milk
- 1 teaspoon of vanilla
- 1 tablespoon of raw almond butter
- 1 teaspoon of chia seeds
- Place everything in the blender and blend for 30 seconds and serve immediately.
Nutrition Facts: 187 calories, 6.8 g fat (<1 g saturated), 91 mg sodium, 30.1 g carbs, 4.3 g fiber, 15.2 g sugars, 3.7 g protein
The Journal of the International Society of Sports Nutrition found that eating foods rich in L-arginine, like almonds, can help you burn more carbs and fat during workouts. The raw almond butter in this meal replacement smoothie is an essential nutrient for any athlete looking to lose more during workouts.
4. Berry and Oats Breakfast Smoothie
Serves 1-2 people
- 1/2 old fashioned rolled oats
- 1 cup of milk
- 1/2 cup of frozen berries
- 3 tablespoons of honey
- 1/3 cup of vanilla yogurt
- 1/4 cup of ice
- Put everything in the blender and blend it till it’s smooth and creamy.
- Pour and enjoy.
Nutrition Facts: 280 calories, 4.9g fat (2.3g sat fat), 3.3g fiber, 35.9g sugar, 10.6g protein
While oatmeal is great for you, you’re not always in the mood for a hot bowl. This smoothie combines antioxidant rich blueberries with oats to give you all the benefits of that morning bowl of oatmeal in one tasty drink.
5. Pina Colada Smoothie
Serves 1 person
- 1 ripe frozen banana
- 3/4 cup of fresh pineapple chunks
- 1/2 cup of Bai5 Molokai coconut drink
- 1/3 cup of plain Greek yogurt
- 1/4 teaspoon of vanilla extract
- 1 cup of ice
- Cherries or pineapple chunks for garnish
- Add ingredients in the order listed above to the blender.
- Blend until thick and creamy, or about 3 minutes. Scrape the sides of the blender as needed.
- Pour, add cherries or pineapple garnish and enjoy.
Nutrition Facts:215 calories, 0.5 g fat (<1 g saturated), 65 mg sodium, 65 g carbs, 5.8 g fiber, 33.2 g sugars, 6 g protein
Not everyone gets to visit the tropics, but this meal replacement smoothie is a nice mental vacation. This drink is a great alternative to the calorie heavy mixed drink.
Tips on Making Meal Replacement Smoothies
- Filling Is Key: A meal should have 400 to 500 calories in it. Don’t cut yourself short with smoothies. According to a study done by Flavor, people who drank thick smoothies felt fuller longer than people who drank thinner ones so drink a thicker smoothie whenever possible.
- Don’t Skip the Nutrients: Every meal should have carbohydrates, healthy fats, and proteins. Depending on what you’re planning on doing, you will need different combinations of those things in your meal or smoothie.
- Consistency: If you are looking to lose some weight with meal replacement smoothies, you will need to be consistent and drink them as part of your regular diet. You don’t need to drink them every meal every day, add them to your diet at least twice a week.
- Be Creative: Don’t get stuck in a rut and drink the same thing every day. Try out different flavors to keep your diet fresh.
- Cut Out the Bad: Be aware of sugar and do not include it in your smoothies if at all possible. Honey and agave are okay once in a while, but they’re still sugar and shouldn’t be used consistently.
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