What key ingredient is missing from your morning smoothie?
Smoothies are a great option for breakfast, lunch or dinner! They are quick to make, easy to transport and are can be a delicious and nutritious meal. But often my clients come to me saying that their smoothies don’t keep them full or that they are hungry an hour after consumption.
The feeling was mutual for so many years. I even stopped making them because I felt like it was a big waste of my time making a smoothie for breakfast and then having to go out and buy another ‘unhealthy’ breakfast only an hour later!
My typical smoothie had the basics, spinach, protein powder, blueberries, a full banana and almond milk. This seems like a healthy well balanced smoothie, right? Well, not exactly.
It wasn’t until I went to nutrition school that I realized the important ingredient I was missing in my smoothies along with that I didn't realize were affecting the massive swing in my hunger after consuming my smoothies.
First things first, the missing ingredient. FAT. I was missing the most delicious, nutritious and satiating part of any good smoothie! Fat is an essential macronutrient that should always be incorporated in every snack, or meal. Consuming healthy fats can help you lower cholesterol, boost brain function and are the missing ingredient in your smoothie that will help you feel fuller longer!
Some other things to consider when making your next smoothie is the amount of fruit you add to your smoothie, especially fruit high in sugar like bananas. Too much sugar and zero fat to slow down the release of glucose in the bloodstream can cause spikes in insulin which means we you will feel good for a quick minute after consuming your smoothie and then crash within an hour because your blood sugar has now dropped and is wanting more food! Instead of a whole banana in your next smoothie try going for half or a quarter banana, or swapping that banana all together for half an avocado. Avocados are a great source of healthy fats and will make your smoothie creamy without adding any sugar.
One last thing to remember when you make your smoothie is the size. The food industry is great at making you believe that you need a massive smoothie in order to feel satiated but that is not the case! It’s the ingredients you put into your smoothie that will help sustain you until your next meal. Remember we should be looking for a good balance of protein, fats and fibre in each smoothie, or meal for that matter. A good sized smoothie is no more than a standard size mason jar size. Not the protein shaker bottle size that I see most people consuming!
As an added bonus I've added a cheat sheet on making the ultimate smoothie.