This week's #bebetter52 challenge is to make healthy smoothies!
Smoothies are popular and for good reason! They are an excellent way to sneak extra nutrients into your diet, and they are delicious and easy to make.
Probiotics, which may help improve immune function, protect against hostile bacteria to prevent infection, and improve digestion and absorption of food and nutrients, are easy to add to a smoothie using yogurt or kefir (be sure to get plain yogurt/kefir so you aren't accidentally putting added sugar into the smoothie). Prebiotics, a type of fiber that feeds probiotics in your gut, are found in bananas and flaxseeds which are also great additions to your healthy smoothie. Smoothies still contain the fiber from added fruits and veggies to help you reach your recommended intake of fiber and to receive some help with any constipation you might be having. Because of the fiber and high water content, smoothies are filling but low in calories. It's easy to add spinach, lettuce, or kale to your smoothie for added nutrients--just throw a handful in and reap the benefits of leafy greens. Adding fats to your smoothie is important so you can feel fuller longer and not experience the spike in blood sugar you might experience from a purely fruit smoothie. Flaxseeds, full fat Greek yogurt, avocado, nut butters, and coconut milk are all fat options to add to your smoothie.
There are many options to choose when making a healthy smoothie. You can follow our basic smoothie recipe or search around for a smoothie recipe that excites you! Experiment with different flavor combinations and share your favorite recipe with your team. Making the smoothies at home will be less expensive, and you know exactly what's going into it.
Choose liquid base
1-2 cups of liquid. Mix and match or just pick one from the following list:
Milk, yogurt, kefir, coconut milk, coconut water, almond milk, cashew milk, hemp milk, etc.
Select fruits and veggies
Pick at least 2 fruits or veggies, fresh or frozen.
Bananas (thicken the smoothie and make it creamy), avocado (adds fat with minimal flavor change), strawberries, blueberries, blackberries, mango, pineapple, peach, cucumber, kiwi, etc.
Add in some greens
Add a handful of one of the following:
Spinach, kale, lettuce, dandelion greens, arugula, etc.
Sprinkle in whatever you've got!
Chia seeds (remember to soak them first), flaxseed, hemp seeds, protein powder, probiotics, fish oil, sprouts, nut butter, oats, avocado oil, coconut oil, cinnamon, etc.