For the most part, I’m a fan of eating whole veggies and fruit versus drinking your produce. Whole food is more satiating than the liquid version and you can drink a lot of calories pretty quickly if you go for the biggie-size cup.
Having said that, smoothies can be a fantastic way to jam a whole lot of goodness into one cup!
Take this Blueberry Blast Smoothie for example:
It’s packed with whole foods that provide nutrients that promote immune system health including vitamin C, folate, vitamin B12 and vitamin D. These nutrients can help keep you healthy through this seemingly never ending cold and flu season.
The kefir adds a hit of good probiotic bacteria to keep your gut healthy (also linked to immunity).
The ground flax gives a little plant-based omega-3, a nutrient that can help keep skin healthy – also important during cold, dry winter months.
The fruit, flax and oats offer fibre to help you stay satisfied for longer, along with the protein from the milk, kefir and Greek yogurt.
The blueberries are associated with brain health (I recommend a serving of berries every day – especially for those of us in the 40years+ category).
It’s got greens – and we can all use a little more green in our days to help keep our hearts healthy!
Each serving has less than 200 calories (about 170), 29 grams of quality carbs and 10 grams of protein, making it perfect as post workout fuel to reenergize and refuel muscles.
I whirl this smoothie up after a long trail run or intense Orange Theory workout (my new fav!). Enjoy!
Blueberry Blast Smoothie
Makes: 4 servings
1 large banana, frozen
2 cups (500 mL) frozen blueberries
1 ½ cups lightly packed baby spinach
2 cups (250 mL) milk *
½ cup (125 mL) plain, Greek yogurt (2% MF)
½ cup (125 mL) kefir (1%)
2 tbsp (30 ml) rolled oats
2 tbsp (30 mL) ground flax
1 tsp (5 mL) vanilla (optional)
Puree all ingredients in a blender until smooth.
Pour into glasses and sip immediately!
Download a printable PDF of this recipe.
Per serving (1/4 recipe): 168 calories, 3 g fat, 1 g saturated fat, 0 g trans fat, 6 mg cholesterol, 86 mg sodium, 29 g carbohydrates, 4 g fibre, 18 g sugars, 10 g protein. Excellent source of vitamin B12 and vitamin D. Good source of calcium. * skim milk used for analysis.
Dietitians of Canada. Immune System Background. In: Practice-based Evidence in Nutrition [PEN]. 2011 June 21. Available from:
http://www.pennutrition.com/KnowledgePathway.aspx?kpid=16006&trid=18279&trcatid=38 Access only by subscription or sign up for a free two week trial.
Bhupathiraju SN et al. Quantity and variety in fruit and vegetable intake and risk of coronary heart disease. Am J Clin Nutr 2013;98:1514-23.