"If opportunity doesn't knock, build a door."

Milton Berle

A Smoothie for Better Health

by Derik Brady Nutrition Dieting Goal Building

A Smoothie for Better Health

Like most people, my food and beverage choices are based on taste, cost, health, and convenience. For the past six years I have been incorporating a customizable smoothie to my diet that it is easy to make, inexpensive, tasty, perfect on-the-go or as a snack, great before/after a workout, or to replace a meal altogether. In this post I will go over the ingredients, why they are essential, and how to manipulate the smoothie to fit your needs.

For a happy, energized, healthy body, a balanced diet is where it all begins. Since this smoothie can replace a whole meal, it must consist of protein, carbohydrates, fat, vitamins, minerals, and water! The following is the ingredients needed and the easiest way to make it:

Pour a decent amount of unflavored unsweetened almond coconut milk in the blender (I recommend a Ninja brand blender). This milk is healthier compared to the flavored versions because of the reduced sugar. The almond coconut milk also contains protein, healthy fats, vitamins etc.. Next, add a banana for potassium and a handful or two of frozen mixed berries (blueberries, strawberries, raspberries, blackberries). The frozen fruit keep the shake cold, adds antioxidants, contains micronutrients, and fructose (fruit sugar) which supplies the body with instant energy. For protein, add 1-2 scoops of unflavored Bipro whey protein. I recommend this brand for its amino acid profile (read my post on Protein for more on amino acids) and has an unflavored version (no unwanted ingredients). For added gut health, extra protein, and healthy fats, add a generous scoop or two of unflavored plain Greek yogurt, pineapple cottage cheese, and organic peanut butter. Last but not least, add old fashion rolled oats (recommend less than 1/4 cup) and just enough of the almond coconut milk to blend everything. Oats are a complex carbohydrates and will sustain energy overtime.

You might be thinking something like, “thats a lot of ingredients” or “eww I don’t like cottage cheese!” but don’t worry because the beauty is you can add or subtract whatever you want. For example, If I want to reduce the amount of carbohydrates in the smoothie, simply remove the banana, berries, or oatmeal. Don’t like peanut butter or don’t want the extra calories? Don’t add it to your smoothie! In conclusion, I hope this post helps point you in the right direction, motivates you to make healthier choices and gives you ideas to create your own smoothie! Any questions feel free to ask!

Some extra interesting facts about the ingredients above: Pineapple contains an enzyme called bromelain which aid in breaking down proteins, helps with digestion, and has anti-inflammatory properties. Cottage cheese is a casein protein, therefore it breaksdown slower in the body, supplying protein over a longer period of time compared to whey protein. Don’t worry if you are lactose intolerant because most of the lactose is removed during the production of greek yogurt. Also, greek yogurt contains probiotics; one of which is called lactobacillus acidophilus and helps reduce lactose making food easier to digest.

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