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What Are The Best Things To Put In A Smoothie?

Smoothies are the perfect way to get a nutritious boost of essential wholefood nutrients in a single meal. They’re delicious, easy to make, and can be tailored to your individual tastes or dietary needs. Plus, they’re a great way to sneak in some extra fruits and veggies! So, what are the best things to put in a smoothie? Let me share how to make perfectly balanced smoothies and as a nutritionist what I think the best ingredients are to include in your smoothie recipes.

What Are The Best Things To Put In A Smoothie?  |  Eat Nourish Glow
What Are The Best Things To Put In A Smoothie? | Eat Nourish Glow

Why Smoothies Are So Good For You?


In many cases, people don't consume a well-balanced diet, so adding smoothies to the menu several times a week is a simple solution to boost your nutritional intake without much fuss. Smoothies are an easy, wholefood meal for a quick nutritious breakfast, a mid-day snack, or as something healthy to help you power through an energy slump.


Loaded with leafy greens, high-fiber fruits, and vegetables, adding smoothies to your weekly meal plan gives you an easy way to increase your consumption of nutrient-dense foods, while nurturing your gut health and supporting natural weight loss.



What Goes Best In Smoothies?


How do you make the healthiest smoothies? Focus on wholefood ingredients from high fibre sources such as fresh or frozen fruits and vegetables, dark leafy greens and fresh herbs, nuts, seeds and your choice of liquid. Lots of people usually add bananas to improve the texture and taste.


If you are diabetic like me, you can make a diabetic-friendly recipes and substitute low-calorie steamed cauliflower, high fibre sweet potato, raw or cooked oats, or creamed quinoa for the bananas ins any recipe. This will to create as close as you can get to to that soft serve-like consistency in your smoothies. It is also a great idea to do this for variety and not just rely on super sweet bananas to flavour your smoothies every time.


For instance, my Green Goddess Super Slimmer Smoothie tastes super creamy, but provides such mega dose of phytonutrients from green veggies. Its made with either banana for a hit of sweetness, or steamed cauliflower for a low-carb, diabetic-friendly option.


More Smoothie Recipes To Try


SHOP SMOOTHIE MEAL PLANS


Smoothie Ingredients


Typically, smoothies are made with a combination of fresh fruit, vegetables, and a liquid such as milk or water. The wholefood ingredients are blended together to create a thick and creamy beverage. Smoothies can be customized to fit any dietary needs or nutritional preferences. With a variety of flavours and combinations, there is something for everyone to enjoy. Here are the key ingredients used in smoothie recipes:


  1. Milk or water: the liquid you use can be simple tap water or something more nutrient-rich like coconut water, dairy or plantbased milk.

  2. Fruits and veggies: this is where smoothies get their fibre-rich nutrients from and provides you with a powerhouse of nutrition all in one tasty meal. Just remember not to overdo it on too much a good thing!

  3. Natural thickeners: some people add ice or frozen bananas to their smoothies to make them thicker and more like the consistency of serve ice cream. If you are diabetic like myself or want a lower calorie alternative to banana, try blending avocado, steamed cauliflower, chia pudding, oatmeal, yoghurt, or nut butters.

Combining these three simple ingredients makes a surprisingly delicious smoothie recipe suitable for those looking to heal and nourish the gut while rebalancing body weight.


Are Smoothies Better With Milk Or Water?

Are Smoothies Better With Milk Or Water? | Eat Nourish Glow
Are Smoothies Better With Milk Or Water? | Eat Nourish Glow

What Is The Best Milk for Smoothies?


In smoothies you can use any kind of milk, water, coconut water or even herbal teas to create deliciously healthy smoothie recipes. For most people, plantbased milk combines best with fruits and vegetables in the stomach and is easier to digest than more calorie-rich, dairy-based options. Almond, hemp, and coconut milks work best for people with IBS, dairy allergies or sensitivities. Other alternatives include cashew, oat and soy milk, all of which have some health benefits.


  • Almond milk: is great for veggies and fruity recipes and won't ferment in your tummy like dairy options can.

  • Coconut milk: another great replacement for dairy milk and easily digested if you want a thick consistency and a rich, creamy texture. Blends well with most recipes.

  • Coconut water: a nutrient dense water extracted from young coconuts and a liquid that goes well with just about everything!

  • Cow's milk: if you are not sensitive, best combined with berries, greens and healthy fats

  • Oat milk: an easy-to-digest, low-fat, low-sugar milk that also provide healthy fibre and a creamy flavour. Works well with most recipes, loading with avocado can be calorie rich.

  • Soy milk: higher in protein than other plantbased milks, soy is great option if you are sensitive to dairy or vegan. It works well with most fruits and veggies.


Dairy milk is tasty, there is no denying that. However its also very calorie-rich and contains on of the one food group that can be hard to digest. Milk requires the stomach to release specific enzymes to digest it. When combined with fruits and vegetables, dairy can ferment and cause digestive issues such as bloating, wind, or irritate IBS and the bowel. For this reason, I recommend using plantbased milk options over dairy in your smoothies.


In addition to milk, you can also use tap water, filtered water, coconut water, herbal teas or freshly squeezed juices in your smoothie recipes. Water and herbal teas are both very low calorie and make a fabulous ingredient to help combine and build a smoothie.


If you use fresh juices, use them sparingly as all the dietary fibre has been removed from the juice making it quickly converted to sugar in the body. Many of the nutrients you want to consume are bound to the fibre particles in fruit and vegetables. The juicing process removes a lot of these nutrients, and can impact blood sugar levels in those individuals who have intolerance or insulin conditions.


BROWSE MY SMOOTHIE RECIPE EBOOKS


Food Sensitivities


Can you be allergic to smoothies? Yes, absolutely if you are sensitive to the ingredients used. Use what you know your body responds well to and if you experiment, try only one new veggie or ingredient at a time. Isolate it so you can easily track the culprit.



Things You Should Never Add To Your Smoothie


What makes a smoothie unhealthy or taste yucky? Smoothies are a delicious and healthy snack or meal, but they can also become unhealthy or taste unpleasant depending on the ingredients you choose to blend. One of the most common unhealthy ingredients in smoothies is added sugars. Many popular smoothie recipes call for sweeteners like honey, dates, agave, or maple syrup to improve the flavour. These ingredients, while some have health benefits, add up quickly and can stack a lot of calories and unwanted sugar to your meal making it unhealthy. It’s always best to avoid sweetener ingredients or use them very sparingly.


Processed ingredients such as pre-made smoothie mixes, flavoured yogurts, and even many protein powders can make a smoothie unhealthy or taste yucky. These highly processed smoothie ingredients are often full of added sugars, artificial flavors, thickeners or food colouring. Accept that your green smoothie may not actually look green, rather than use a pre-package smoothie blend. Real food is far better for you, and if you combine the ingredients right, will taste amazing. It’s always best to make your smoothie from scratch with real, wholefood ingredients.


6 Things You Don't Need To Add To Smoothies


These ingredients have absolutely no place in smoothie recipes in my personal and professional opinion. They are too sugar-rich and ramp up the calories for very little health benefits:

  • canned fruit or commercial fruit juices (high sugar content)

  • fat-free flavoured yogurt whether dairy or vegan (sugar and artificial flavours)

  • any ice cream, frozen yogurt, or sherbet (sugar and artificial flavours)

  • protein powders that are a meal replacement (too calorie rich)

  • protein powders with too many ingredients or from MLM (subpar ingredients)

  • superfood powders that contain sugar, additives or flavourings

The whole idea behind a smoothie recipe is to puree wholefood ingredients to make a balanced nutrient-rich meal. If you add too many "good things" you can take a healthy smoothie and make it into something as calorie-rich as an ice cream. Less is more when it comes to blending a healthy smoothie.



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How Often Should You Have Smoothies?


I recommend enjoying a smoothie 3-4 times a week, or every day but only if you are making sure you vary the ingredients each time. For instance, if you enjoy an almond milk, avocado kale based smoothie on Monday, make sure you switch it up and have a coconut water, mango and protein-based one the next day. Yes, you could safely have a smoothie every day, but you need to vary the veggies, milk and the fruits to provide your body with a broad spectrum of nutrients throughout the week.


Want to try wholefood based smoothie recipes? You might like my 7 Day Green Smoothie recipe book full of easy smoothie ideas! Click here to grab your copy!


Healthy + happiness,

Emma Lisa xx

HEALTH & NUTRITION PRACTITIONER


 

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