10 Mistakes To Avoid When Making Healthy Smoothies
When it comes to making healthy smoothies it isn’t that hard once you know the basic process and proper ingredients to use.
There are still common smoothie mistakes that people do when making healthy smoothies, especially if they are trying to lose weight.
Avoid these mistakes and become a smoothie master !
1. Not Enough Fiber
Fiber is what helps you to feel full and prevents hunger pangs from taking hold. Without any fiber, you risk eating unhealthy snacking throughout the day.
Yes, fruit does contain fiber, but not all are great. For example 1/2 a banana only contains 1.4 g of fiber in it. Instead of a banana use berries, kiwi, pear or avocado. As for vegetables try switching up spinach with some kale. Kale contains twice as much fiber as spinach.
It is recommended that women need 25 grams and men need 38 grams of fiber per day vs. the typical adult only gets 15 grams per day.
You can also add in fiber rich foods to your smoothie like oats, yogurt, flaxseed or our favorite Chia seeds. Did you know that Chia seeds have an amazing 5.5 grams of fiber per tablespoon ?
2. Lacking Protein
If you want to avoid snacking during the day include at least 10 g of protein in your smoothie. You can, of course add some protein powder but some people want natural protein for their smoothies.
You can get protein from the liquid you us in smoothies like soy milk or dairy milk.
If you are using water for your smoothie liquid then some great sources of proteins for your smoothies are: nuts, nut butters, coconut milk, oats, chia seeds, pumpkin seeds or Greek yogurt.
3. Including Too Much Fruit
Yes, fruit contains plenty of nutrients and fiber, but they also contain a lot of calories. If you are not careful you could consume 500 calories without realizing it.
Fruit also contains a lot of natural sugar that your body metabolizes fast. Within the hour you could start to feel hungry once more.
Make sure that along with the fruit you add some form of protein.
4. Adding More Sweetener
Including a tablespoon of maple syrup or honey in your smoothie adds another 60 calories. With the right recipe you should get enough sweetness with the fruit or flavorings used. For sweetness you can try adding raisins, dates, or prunes to your smoothie. Also consider spices to add some taste like cinnamon, all spice, or nutmeg.
When starting out on a smoothie detox, it will take a couple days for your body to adjust the the lack of sugar but stick with it.
5. Not Measuring
We all too often just put things in without weighing them out first but by doing this you are actually going to end up eating more calories that you need.
Don’t forget that any calories that you don’t burn get stored as fat.
6. Forgetting To Add The Greens
Not only are greens easy to prepare but they taste great. Green smoothies are packed with important nutrients and are the easiest way to increase your daily vegetable intake.
You can, of course, add some green powder to your smoothie but you’ll get far more nutrients by adding fresh greens like kale, spinach or watercress. Did you know that watercress is the most nutrient dense food ?
When making a smoothie, try to have at least 1/3 of the ingredients(by size) be green vegetables. Spinach works great in smoothies because it has a mild taste and is packed with vitamins.
7. Using The Same Ingredients Every Day
By mixing it up you are making sure that your body gets all the nutrients it needs. Also, rotating your leafy greens can help prevent alkaline buildup.
Changing things around ensures that you stick to your new regime better. If you stick to the same thing you soon become bored.
TIP – Have a core group of green smoothie recipes that you like and rotate through those during the week. This will provide some variety and allow you to use the same ingredients multiple times during the week so no perishable groceries go to waste.
8. Not Adding Any Liquid
Many people new to smoothies do not use enough liquid when making a smoothie. This causes the ingredients to be lumpy and can burn out your blender.
Most will suggest you add water, but adding any liquid is okay. Just stay away from using store-bought fruit juices that are full of sweeteners and preservatives.
The best measure for the correct amount of liquid is to have a “vortex” in the middle of the smoothie when it is blending.
9. Not Buying Good Quality Produce
When it comes to buying produce make sure that you go for organic as much as possible. If you can’t afford to buy all organic, at least consider substituting organic for fruits and vegetables that are known to have the most pesticides.
This way you won’t be consuming chemicals that could prove detrimental to your health. Even if you buy organic you still need to wash all the produce before you use it.
10. Forget To Read The Labels
Look at the labels on the milk or liquid you are going to be using. If you are not careful you may be adding more sugar into your diet.
This is especially true if you use a milk alternative like rice milk, almond milk, or soy milk that can have versions that are sweetened or flavored.
Also, some brands may contain certain preservatives or coloring agents. Any of these can prove detrimental to your health and weight loss goals. It is amazing how many more calories these can add to your smoothie.