Smoothies are delicious, easy to eat on the go and they are healthy. Smoothies are a great way to increase your intake of fruits and vegetables, especially if you are not someone who is inclined to eating a salad or a whole fruit. But the truth is many of the smoothies that you make are sabotaging your health in many ways.
Many people start their day with a glass of nutrient-packed smoothie. However, if you don't pay attention to portions, it can result in a smoothie that can easily account for a third to half of your calorie needs.
Some of the smoothies that you make at home may contain high amounts of sugar and calories. Also, many store-bought smoothies are thickened with sorbet or sherbet. While this may incite your taste buds, what you are sipping is a milkshake in disguise.
While making breakfast smoothies at home, you need to be careful about the sugar and calorie content.
So, read on to know the ways smoothie is sabotaging your health.
1. You Are Adding Too Much Fruit
Too much of fruit means too much of sugar. Though the sugars in the fruit are natural, they still make your blood sugar rise and can make it harder to lose weight. So, it's recommended to use fruits which are low in sugar like berries or watermelon and limit your intake to one cup.
If you love having banana smoothie, cut it in half.
2. You Aren't Adding Healthy Fats
Making smoothies full of vitamin-rich fruits and vegetables is good, but then you are forgetting about the fat content in it. Vitamins are fat-soluble and get absorbed in the body best when you add foods like avocados, flax seeds, nut butters, chia seeds, whole eggs, nuts, yogurt and so on.
3. Not Adding Enough Veggies
Smoothies are one of the easiest ways to sneak in vegetables into your diet. You must be piling up on fruits into your smoothies without considering adding kale, spinach, collard greens and other green leafy vegetables into your morning drink. These green leafy veggies add more nutrition to your smoothie, without adding too much sugar or calories.
4. Too Little Or Too Much Protein
While adding protein in your smoothies, you need to strike the right balance. Too much of protein is not better and too little could leave you feeling hungry and unsatisfied. Too much of protein means adding too much of protein powder, topped with peanut butter and yogurt. If you are blending ice with the fruit and almond milk in your smoothie, you might end up getting no protein at all.
5. Don't Overload Your Smoothie
Don't overload your blender with fruits and vegetables, which might be healthy but will add on extra calories. Instead, create a healthy and simple smoothie formula. For instance, 1 cup leafy greens, 1 cup of other vegetables of your choice, 1 cup of fruit, 1 scoop of protein powder, 1 to 2 tablespoons of healthy fats, water or milk for a base. Stick to this equation.
6. Not Thinking About The Ingredients Quality
When it comes to your smoothie, think about the quality over quantity. To build a nutritional smoothie, use a protein powder without artificial ingredients or buy organic nut butters without added sugars and oil. So, in this way, you will get all the quality nutrition into your diet.
7. Portion Size
You may be gulping down a glass of smoothie as a snack before mealtime, not realizing that it is enough for an entire meal. You should decide for yourself if your smoothie is a meal or a snack and adjust your portions, ingredients and cup size accordingly.
A smoothie with one cup of berries, ¾th cup of Greek yogurt and water makes for a tasty and delicious smoothie snack. But a smoothie with a banana, spinach, nut butter and almond milk is a meal-sized smoothie.
8. Too Much Added Sugar
A large smoothie made with orange juice, flavoured yogurt and frozen fruits has as many as 20 to 25 teaspoons of sugar. Surprised right? If you are making a chocolate smoothie, you could be adding chocolate syrup or chocolate chips. Instead of using juice or sweetened milk, stick to coconut water, plain water or almond milk for the base.
9. Too Many Superfoods
Many ingredients like chia seeds, goji berries, turmeric, kale and flax seeds are going into your smoothie, right? While these are nutrient-dense foods, adding too many of these ingredients can also come with too many calories.
10. Not Having Smoothies With Breakfast
If you are still hungry after having a smoothie as a snack or a meal, then your tummy is not full. Research suggests that foods in semi-solid forms are more filling and satiating than drinking liquids. If your morning smoothie makes you hungry, have it with a bowl of oatmeal.
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