I love smoothies! It’s a great way to ensure that you’re getting your daily requirements of nutrients in a form that takes virtually no time to prepare. Plus it is portable and delicious. I have a smoothie everyday for either my meal 2 or 4 and I feel a noticable decline in my energy and mood if I miss my daily smoothie. A great smoothie starts with the right blender. I coveted the Vitamix 750 for years before I finally invested in it and I can honestly say it’s one the the best investments I made. That being said, if you’re just venturing into the smoothie world and are not sure if this is something you’re committing to longterm, there are plenty of more affordable blenders on the market that will get the job done well. Here are ten things that you should always put in your smoothie to help fuel you body and day:
This little gem provides antioxidants as well as omega-3 fatty acids (which gives you anti-inflammatory benefits as well as improves your hair, skin and nails). Moreover, it aids in digestion and helps you absorb other nutrients taken with it! 1 TBS is all you need to get these benefits and it won’t change the taste of your smoothie!
These seeds ‘fatten’ up to an almost jelly-like consistency when mixed with liquids giving your smoothie a great texture without feeling gritty. Wonder where the name chia comes from? It’s a Mayan word for strength! Like ground flax, chia seeds offer antioxidants. Plus one ounce of chia seeds also fuels you with 5 grams of Omega-3 as well as calcium, magnesium, zinc, Vitamin B3, and Potassium! BAM!
Hemp is a complete protein seed (meaning it contains all of the 9 essential amino acids to make it a full protein. What this means is that unlike other seeds and nuts which require other protein sources to make them a complete protein, hemp hearts do it on their own, making it a great protein source for all my vegan and vegetarian sisters! Because of this protein, hemp hearts will help to keep you feeling fuller longer as well as reduce cravings!
This has become a super popular drink lately and it’s a good thing it’s caught on! Coconut water has a higher and faster absorbtion rate than water which means it fuels your body with hydration more effectively (especially after a workout). It also contains potassium which helps reduce your risk of high blood pressure, arthritis, digestive disorders and infertility! If you don’t like the taste of coconut water, there are lots of flavours that are flavoured naturally which will help with the taste of the drink. Plus, if you’re adding it to a smoothie, the taste of it will be both complimented and “hidden” with the flavours of what you mix it with.
If you’re working out, you need to make sure you’re getitng enough protein into your diet (especially if you’re vegetarian or vegan). Protein aids in muscle repair, gives you energy, and keeps you feeling fuller longer. There are a lot of nasty meal replacement shakes that offer protein, but what’s best for your body is a natural source of protein. My favourite is Perfect Fit Protein make by the Tone It Up girls Karena and Katrina. In each scoop of Perfect Fit protein there is 15 grams of organic plant-based protein PLUS it’s vegan, gluten free and certified organic!
This is one super superfood! Wheatgrass contains fibre, amino acids, Vitamins A, C, E, B6 & K, magnesium and much more! The trouble with wheatgrass is it’s hard to extract wheatgrass properly because rapid movements will oxidize the chlorophyll. Wheatgrass needs to be ‘milked’ out of the plant and consumed immediately. Most of us don’t have time for this, which is why I love Evergreen Wheatgrass. They come in frozen individual pouches so all you have to do is pop a pouch into your smoothie and voila you have all the benefits as if you harvested the wheatgrass yourself!
Kale is the new black. In the last few years, its popularity has skyrocketed making it more readily available to us! Kale contains a high concentration of antioxidants as well as vitamin A, C &K. If you typically don’t like the taste of kale, adding it to your smoothie is the best way to get your greens because once added to a smoothie, you cannot taste the kale! I personally enjoy the taste of kale, but I promise you, if you’ve been avoiding it because of the taste, it’s time to try it in your fruit smoothie. You won’t even know it’s there and you’ll be getting all of the benefits.
Good ol’ banana. Not only does banana add sweetness and creaminess to your smoothie, it’s also packed with potassium! Bananas also contain tryptophan (the natural feel-good drug)! They also help with muscle cramps post workout so they’re great in a post-sweat smoothie!
This sweet little beauty helps your digestions, boots your immune function and gives you healthy skin, hair and nails! Who doesn’t want that?!
This is a no-brainer. Fruit is full of fibre plus it makes your smoothie taste great! Fruit will not make you fat! Do not be afraid of fruit…fruit is your friend. I often add blueberries, strawberries, mango, or peaches to my smoothie. I prefer to buy frozen fruit or freeze my own because they help give your smoothie that “frosty flavour” making it feel like a treat!