Strictly speaking, smoothies are not really the best start to the day, but it’s one habit that I haven’t got around to changing yet. It’s true that vegetables and fruit are full of lots of wonderful nutritious goodness, but essentially they are carbohydrates, which are broken down in the body as sugars. If you are going to have a smoothie, try to keep the fruit content lower (sticking to berries and apples which are lower in sugar) and the vegetable content high. The most important thing to remember is to ALWAYS ADD PROTEIN (yes, that is me being bossy!). If you eat carbohydrates with protein it slows down the release of the sugars into the bloodstream – simple! The easiest way to add protein to a smoothie is with a protein powder – of which many are available. My favourites are pea, hemp or brown rice protein powder. The taste can take a little getting used to so you may want to experiment with which one you prefer but it’s also good to switch it up every now and again.
If you also add some fat to your smoothies too (e.g. avocados, almond butter, coconut oil) then you have what’s known as a nutritionally complete meal (containing fats, carbs and protein). Lastly, I add some Maca powder (for extra nutrition and energy) and flaxseed to mine.
By the way, I don’t have an expensive Vitamix or NutriBullet, just a very simple but perfectly adequate smoothie blender. Some people think that breaking your food down so much (as in the case of the aforementioned) makes the sugars too readily available to your body and there are reports of people feeling sick after drinking smoothies made in them. I’m inclined to agree but it really is personal choice.