Did you know March is National Nutrition Month? Nutrition is a popular topic every month here at Take Courage Coaching and in the health and wellness community in general. Why? Because nutrition is the foundation for health and wellness. What we eat impacts our health on a cellular level. The food we eat determines how our gut functions (digestion), it significantly impacts how we feel and how we move, how much energy we have, and even how we look. Want to give your nutrition a boost? Read 5 Secret Tips for Yummy Green Smoothies…
While there is a lot to learn about good nutrition – visit MyPlate.gov to get started – one thing we know for sure is that most of us could benefit from having more dark leafy greens in our diet. Why? Because they are chock-full of good things like vitamins, minerals, antioxidants, fiber, and phytonutrients. For more info on the health benefits of greens, read “Health Benefits of Dark Green Vegetables” by VeryWellFit.
Green smoothies are a fantastic way to get your greens in a single serving and they can taste yummy too!
One easy way to get more greens into our diet is by drinking green smoothies. They are easy to make and a good way to “drink” your greens in a single serving. I know, I know, you’re probably cringing at the thought of drinking a green smoothie. BLECH!! Who wants to drink spinach or kale? I urge you to give it a try. With a few simple tips, your green smoothies can be super yummy! I promise.
Here are 5 secret tips for yummy green smoothies
1. Freeze Fruits, No Ice
Many people put ice in their smoothies thinking that it’s the trick to smoothness. Not so, young grasshopper. When you freeze your fruit, there is no need for ice. Your fruits will be super chill and your smoothies will taste better. Freeze your leafy greens too, just keep them separate from your fruits. You’ll learn why in tip #3.
2. Follow the 60/40 Rule
One of the best-kept secrets to yummy smoothies is the 60/40 rule. Aim for 60% fruits to 40% leafy greens. Now that’s not so hard, is it? Here’s a general guideline to follow for mixing your fruits and veggies together for a good green smoothie: 2 cups leafy greens + 2 cups liquid + 3 cups fruit
3. Blend Greens First
Here’s another top-secret smoothie trick. Nobody likes green chunks in your smoothie that get stuck in your teeth, then you have to chew and work hard to get down. That’s nasty! For a smooth and tasty green smoothie, try blending your greens first with your liquid of choice. Blend the greens in your blender until they are well blended and smooth, then add your frozen fruits and blend again. Voila! A smoother smoothie right in your own kitchen.
4. Stick to Natural Sweeteners
One of the main reasons for drinking green smoothies is to boost your health. So you’ll want to avoid adding artificial sweeteners or processed sugars to sweeten your smoothies. Stick with naturally sweet fruits and your smoothies will be yummy. Here are some of the best fruits that are naturally sweet: apples, bananas, mango, pears, pineapple, pitted dates
5. Prepping Saves You Time
Like with regular meal prep, the idea of prepping for smoothies is to make the process quick and easy and to save you some time. The easier something is, the more likely you are to keep doing it. Smoothie prepping is so easy! No cooking involved. Just get in the habit of prepping your fruits and veggies promptly when you return home from the market or grocery store. Wash/rinse, peel, chop, portion, and freeze. Portion your fruits and veggies and place them into freezer baggies, label, and freeze. Now your smoothie ingredients are ready and handy when you need them. All that is left is to add liquid and blend!
If you like a thicker smoothie, add a bit of avocado to your smoothie. Yes, avocados are high in fat, but it is monounsaturated fat, a good fat that helps lower the bad cholesterol levels in your body. Start with a 1/4 avocado blended with your favorite ingredients. You might be surprised at how good they taste in a smoothie. Also, throw a few seeds in your smoothie for an extra health boost. The three easiest and most versatile seeds are chia, flax, and raw hemp seeds. Chia and ground flax seeds offer omega-3 fatty acids and check out all the health benefits of raw hemp seeds.
And here is one of my go-to favorite green smoothie recipes. Enjoy!
Easy Breezy Green Smoothie
Makes 2 Servings (16-20 ounces)
1 large banana, frozen
1 cup mango cubes, frozen (fruit hack: get frozen mango at the grocery!)
1 cup coconut water
1 cup almond milk (substitute your favorite milk alternative – oat, hemp, coconut, rice)
1/4 Hass avocado
1/4 cup fresh parsley (stems and leaves, tightly packed)
1 cup baby kale (leaves only, tightly packed)
References: here are some favorite sources I often refer to for my smoothies and that I drew from for this post:
How to Make a Perfect Green Smoothie by 100 Days of Real Food
Crazy Sexy Juice – a book by Kris Carr
Health Benefits of Dark Green Vegetables by VeryWellFit.com
WARNING: If you have special dietary restrictions or needs, please consult with your physician before making any changes to your diet. At Take Courage Coaching, we encourage you to be curious and try different things to find what works best for you.
Thanks for reading 5 Secret Tips for Yummy Green Smoothies. Want to read more from our blog on nutrition? Read 5 Superfoods To Eat Right Now.