Now that it’s hot, and we’ve been in quarantine and preparing what seems like just endless meals, that maybe we’re sick of cooking. I so feel you on this one, I am right there! And there is is one particular type of food that has been saving my bacon that I am so enamored with I want to tell everyone I know, and that includes you. And that type of food is: smoothies. I truly believe that smoothies are the perfect food for this moment.
Smoothies are perfect because they’re delicious—they’ve got a creamy cold vibe kind of like a milkshake— they’re nutritious because they are an easy way to eat whole foods—they taste great—and they’re fast, with minimal prep and minimal cleanup. Plus, kids love them too.
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An Easy Way To Get Your Daily Nutrients
Smoothies are also super filling because the fruit and vegetables have a lot of fiber; and something about drinking them I think makes them more filling than if you ate the same amount of fruit drank the same amount of milk. They’re super easy—if you buy stuff frozen you don’t even have to chop, just throw it all in and turn on the blender. All you have to do is rinse out the blender–so long as you rinse it right away it washes clean super easily.
I think smoothies should run for president! I would vote for them.
Here’s why I got on this smoothie kick
I am your classic ‘solopreneur’ in that I do a few different things, and one of those things is book editing and ghostwriting. This spring a project I worked on was updating a book that came out in 2013 called The Body Reset Diet by Harley Pasternak. He’s a celebrity fitness trainer who helped Jessica Simpson lose 100 pounds after she had her third child. I have worked on a lot of diet books over the years I can’t follow the advice in every book I work on because I would lose my mind, but I do try to adopt something from each book. But the smoothies just spoke to me because quarantine was making figuring out what to feed myself and the family feel extra taxing.
So I decided to follow the actual body reset plan, which is 5 days of three smoothies and two snacks a day, then 5 days of two smoothies, two snacks, and a normal dinner, and then 5 days—and basically the rest of your life— where you have one smoothie a day, two snacks and two regular meals. I lost 4 pounds right away and 2 months later, I’m down 6 quarantine pounds. It really helped me getting me into a good routine of eating at regular times and eating way more fruits than I was before. Smoothies are the perfect food for when you’re home all day—you feel the slightest pang of what might be hunger and you wander in to the kitchen. This got me out of that habit AND made me realize that smoothies are the perfect food and truly are a gift.
Here’s a basic formula for putting together your own smoothie
I usually start with half of a frozen banana. Then about 2 cups of fruit that you can mix and match. This week I’ve been doing frozen peaches and blueberries, about a cup of each. Sometimes it’s strawberries and raspberries. Sometimes it’s two pears (pears make a really creamy smoothie). Something that surprised me was oranges—oranges are great in a smoothie, just peel it and through it in there with some raspberries. OK that’s the fruit part. Smoothies are the perfect food as you can also throw in spinach of chard or kale or lettuce, it’s also a great way to eat more vegetables.
Then you want some protein in there
which could come from protein powder, or yogurt, or even peanut butter or almond butter, or straight up almonds. Hemp seeds are good for protein.
I’m also adding powders
like powdered probiotics, powdered vitamin C, maybe ground flax seeds, all the healthy stuff you could ever want because frankly you’re not going to taste them anyway. Cacao nibs; i never knew what to do with those but they are super yummy additions to smoothies, they stay a little crunchy but definitely have a chocolatey flavor almost like a little chocolate chip.
And then you need some liquid.
My jam is almond milk, but you can use your favorite milk, some folks like coconut water, or maybe a mixture of water. Pour in enough liquid to cover all the solids and whiz it up. Boom. You’ve got breakfast. Or lunch. Or both, because this makes enough for two people, at least in my household. So if you’re blending for one you can put the rest in a glass jar with a lid and stick it in the fridge for later in the day, or deliver it to a neighbor or a family member who maybe could use a little nutrition infusion.
Smoothie, NOT A Milkshake
My only caveat is that you don’t want your smoothie to have more sugar than a soda. Don’t put ice cream in there, or even vanilla yogurt which has about as much sugar as ice cream. Make sure your protein powder has 5 grams of less of sugar in each serving.
Next time you go to the store stock up on frozen fruit and your favorite milk or non-dairy milk. Get some protein powder and you are good to go.
If you’re in a food funk, or eating stuff you know isn’t that great for you, trying having a daily smoothie. It’s great way to get back to preparing your own meals and weaning yourself off the packaged stuff like cereals or bagels for breakfast. It’s a tasty and easy way to boost your nutrition and that’s going to deliver a definite boost to your overall health, too.
I always love to see photos of smoothies or talk ingredients or recipes–post a pic or send me a DM on Instagram