If you are looking for a way to quickly and easily get a bunch of nutrients into your body, then consider making yourself a shake. When I am referring to shakes, I am talking about putting things in a blender and mixing it up until it’s smooth. Doing this essentially allows you to get lots of good stuff into your body quickly. You can also throw lots of really healthy things into the shake, such as spinach, without tasting much of it at all.
Now, the healthiness of it depends on what kinds of nutrients are in your shake. If it’s a bunch of sugary powders or juice, then you are delivering sugar to your body in a way that might overload your system. However, if you have whole fruits, vegetables, berries and water in there, you are delivering good nutrients to your body.
Most people I talk to who are blending up shakes for breakfast or snacks throughout the day have really good intentions. They are doing it to be healthier. However, there are three ways that people usually sabotage their ‘healthy’ shake without knowing it.
Too Much Fruit – if your shake is all or mostly fruit, you are essentially creating a high density sugar drink, which can overload the system or have other adverse affects on your body. When you make your drink, the fruit shouldn’t be the bulk of it. A small amount of frozen berries is a really good option to add sweetness and to keep it cold. Spinach or kale should also be used to get additional nutrients into your shake.
Using Fruit Juices – most fruit juices are full of sugar. Even if there is no added sugar, fruit juices still contain a significantly high sugar load naturally. Again, this can overload your system and add to any problems you might be having. Instead, use almond milk, coconut milk, coconut water or just plain water.
Sugary Powders – a lot of the patients I see get a protein powder to add to their shake, but don’t realize that it’s full of sugar as well! In order to make protein taste really good, most powders have a large amount of sugar in them. We recommend using a clean, plant-based protein like Sun Warrior. It’s totally raw, mixes easily and tastes pretty good. Whey proteins are also not necessarily a bad option, but you must make sure that it is really high quality so that the whey is not derived from antibiotic and hormone-laden cows.
If you are looking for a really simple recipe that is easy to make and is good for you, I recommend using a 1⁄2 cup of frozen berries, 1-2 handfuls or spinach or kale, almond milk or coconut milk (as much as needed), and 1-2 scoops of protein powder. You may need to play with the ratios of almond milk and powder to make sure the density of the shake is not too thick. Adding more liquid will help reduce the thickness of the shake.
Having shakes is a really great way to get a lot of nutrients into your body and is also a quick way to make a meal. If you skip breakfast because you just ‘don’t have time’, there is no reason that you can’t spend 5 minutes to create a healthy breakfast shake. Try to avoid the common pitfalls to get the most out of the shakes by making them as healthy as possible.
If you’d like to learn more about proper nutrition and how shakes fit into that, please give us a call at 949-916-9742.