Friday, August 7, 2015

Smoothies Can Be a Healthy Choice

Smoothies are thick shake-type drinks filled mainly with fruit or vegetables and other nutrient dense ingredients.  They make wonderful options for a meal or a snack when made with natural items. The number of healthy ingredients available for smoothies is practically limitless. After your basic fruits and vegetables, you can add an array of the various spices, herbs, seeds, nuts and more. The possibilities and combinations are endless.

Will drinking a meal make me ravenous?
Studies show that consuming protein, fiber or fat helps you feel full. A drink that packs all three is satisfying. Be sure to carefully choose your ingredients to create a complete meal. Also; blend, blend, blend - up to five minutes. Another study found that incorporating air into the the liquid makes the drink more filling.  

Practice calorie and portion control
Smoothies do provide fiber, as the entire fruit often goes into the blender, skins and all, but they still contain a lot of calories. Choosing a vegetable-based juice in your smoothie is one way to reduce the sugar content. We all crave sweets from time to time. Replace the treat you would normally splurge on with a healthy alternative in a smoothie. But remember, practice portion control. Smoothies are a meal-replacement.

Avoid pre-made smoothies
Don't be fooled by the claims that smoothies made from prepackaged mixes with chemically altered ingredients are a wise health food option and weight loss tool.  These products are purely a marketing ploy to make you think you are living healthfully. 

Try this Apple Pie Smoothie
In a blender, pulse, five raw almonds. Add an apple (leave the skin on), 3/4 cup plain nonfat Greek yogurt, 1/2 cup nonfat milk, one banana, and 1/2 tsp. cinnamon. Delicious!

Drink a Smoothie, Stay Active and Enjoy Your Food

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