The popularity of smoothies is high, and it is still growing.
In our family, smoothies are also popular. Mainly because this is the only way children consume enough different vitamins, minerals, and other nutrients.
Otherwise, they do not eat enough of these ingredients.
On this side, smoothies are great for filling the nutritional deficit of children and people who reject vegetables. Or people who eat too little. Smoothie has a high value of micronutrients.
Of course, my children’s favorite is a fruit smoothie, sweet, and exceptionally delicious. But here, as a responsible mom, I am asking myself. Is this healthy?
We should be aware that people with diabetes and overweight people should not use this type of eating.
Delicious, nutrient-rich smoothies also contain a lot of sugars. Fructose, which is beneficial in small quantities, but otherwise in excessive amounts, cannot be processed by our body.
Fructose, in its digestive process, travels to the liver where it is metabolized. However, excess fructose is converted into fats (triglycerides). The liver sends these into the bloodstream, where high triglyceride levels can increase the risk of cardiovascular disease.
Besides, fructose does not release hormones in the body that give us a feeling of satiety. This way, we do not get full enough, and soon we reach for a new meal, even though we have brought in enough calories in the body.
What can we do to make eating smoothies healthier?
We can send the information to our brain, that we are not hungry anymore, by “chewing” the smoothie. Retain the smoothie in the mouth, chew it a little to connect with saliva. Salvia is an essential factor in metabolism. Hormones that give us a sense of satiety are also triggered when we chew our food. If we just drink it, there is no chewing step. Thus, the brain does not receive a signal of satiety. In this case, you can ingest more calories to quickly.
Almost all components of the fruits (such as minerals, vitamins, other micro and macronutrients), lands in the smoothie. They have a significant effect on the release of fructose into the blood — the process of mixing brakes the fibers. If we juice the fruits, the fibers are removed. The absorption of nutrients and sugars is still slower in smoothies than in fruits we juiced.
Moderate consumption of smoothies is recommended as it is an excellent source of nutrients. To be as healthy as possible, they should be based on vegetables. There should be 60% of vegetables. To reduce the “danger” of excess fructose, we should mix the fruits only roughly. That way, the fibers do not break into too small units. “Broken” fibers do not slow down the passage of sugars into the blood.
Fresh fruit or smoothie?
However, treat yourself with fresh fruits and vegetables in their original form. It is still more significant to health than eating smoothies.
If we consume the origin fruit, fructose is not problematic. In this case, the fibers make sure that fructose enters the liver slowly. That way slivers have time to process its work in peace. The fiber is ingested, and therefore the juice travels reasonably slowly to the liver. Therefore livers are capable of their work, and so most of the harmful effects of the sugar do not express itself.
Fruits are, therefore, an essential part of summer dining. They also supply us with plenty of antioxidants. Our bodies are protected by some of the many, such as vitamin C, beta carotene, anthocyanins, flavonoids, various fruit acids.
The fruits that contain the most antioxidants are blueberries, raspberries, strawberries, and other berries, followed by apricots and cherries.
Antioxidants protect us from sunburn (as well as from plants and fruits themselves, from intense rays) and from the harmful effects of free radicals.
“People can even become addicted to smoothies, so they don’t even consume fruits and vegetables in their original form. This is especially not recommended for children who need to learn about different fruits and vegetables in their original, unprocessed form.” – Veronika Jelovsek
What ingredients belong in a smoothie?
Fresh vegetables: spinach and stem greens are the most popular. We can also use lettuce, parsley, and other green-leaf vegetables.
Fresh fruits: Sweeten the sour fruits with bananas or mango. You can choose a variety of fruits according to your taste and preferences.
To make it not too thick, add the liquid. It can be water, some plant milk and also aloe vera gel.
For the super effect of the smoothie, you can add some of the superfoods (wheat or barley grass powder, chia seeds, spirulina, flax seeds).
You can add oat flakes to the smoothie. That way we consume even the more necessary fibers (best time to add it is in the end, to stay whole or grind them just briefly).
We like to make blueberry “ice cream” at our house. I use:
- 2-3 fists of frozen blueberries
- 2-3 bananas
- a pot of plain or Greek yogurt
- One dl of aloe vera gel
I grind all the ingredients in a blender and offer.
Blueberries can be replaced with other fruits. We can take mixed forest fruits, berries, apricots, peaches. We can add apples. Whatever you desire. Just create. Try it. 😍😍
Even though the sugar in the fruit smoothie goes too fast through digestion, we consume more micro-nutrients than we would with a single fruit. We usually fail to eat more than one or two fruits. This gives my kids a dose of vitamins and minerals that they would not consume otherwise. They adore fruit in a smoothie.
Try to add in the smoothie as many vegetables as possible. Besides, it is advisable not to drink a smoothie with the same ingredients as you drank the previous day. Change the elements daily.
Otherwise, I always stick to the principle, consume everything in a healthy way. Exaggeration is not any good.
And exercise! Go to the gym! Go to the fresh air! Run! Walk!
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