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Your “Healthy” Smoothie Is One of the Unhealthiest Things You Can Eat

Your “Healthy” Smoothie Is One of the Unhealthiest Things You Can Eat


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Between Shakeology, the kale smoothie craze, and the health halo surrounding post-workout smoothie bowls, it might come as a bit of a surprise that smoothies may not be nutritionally ideal. But there’s something about the way many people are doing smoothies that’s seriously unhealthy.

Chances are, if you’re eating a smoothie, it’s either after your workout or it’s your breakfast — or it’s both. What are you putting in that smoothie?

More often than not, people are throwing fruit and ice into the blender and calling it a day. Now and then, people add a splash or two of milk (or a plant-based milk alternative) for a creamier texture. Often, some greens will get thrown into the mix.

But having that all-fruit-and-greens-and-maybe-some-nut-milk smoothie for breakfast is seriously sabotaging your health — and your goals.

Why? Because you are loading your system with simple sugars. And that’s it.

Yes, you need simple sugars from fruit, and yes, fruits and vegetables contain vital micronutrients to boost your health and keep your body going. But that’s not all you need.

When you only pump fruit and fiber into your system, your blood sugar goes haywire. Without the protein or fats to balance it out, your body quickly absorbs all the sugars into your bloodstream and either uses it all or stores the excess very quickly.

When your body digests these sugars, it results in a burst of energy that quickly depletes, and storing them results in (you guessed it) generating fat. Your metabolism, quickly entering panic mode because your body can’t find the nutrients it craves, slows way down so it can preserve the skimpy smoothie you gave it until its next meal.

You’re going to feel hungry. You’re going to store excess sugars as fat. And you’re going to crave high-fat foods (which is really just your body telling you it wants long-sustaining energy) until you finally give in and eat a large meal. Or you binge on a bag of chips. Or you buy three cookies. Who knows?

The point is, all that happened because during a time when your body needed those macronutrients most — either right after fasting all night or after plowing through its energy stores at the gym — you gave it sugar and maybe fiber and nothing else.

So let’s stop it with the skimpy smoothies. A blended juice is not breakfast, and a banana with ice and almond milk isn’t either. Add some nut butter to the mix, scoop in some protein, mix in a dollop (or five) of yogurt. Don’t be scared to add reasonable amounts of nutritious foods instead of adding in more and more and more banana. You’re not hungry after your smoothie because you needed more bananas — you’re hungry because you didn’t add anything else.


7 ways you’re sabotaging your ‘healthy’ breakfast smoothie

6:06 Nutrition: Secrets to the perfect smoothie

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It has fruits, veggies, yogurt and protein powder. Your breakfast smoothie is healthy, isn’t it?

Take a second look, dietitians say. More often than not, smoothies are packed with sugar and too many calories, threatening to sabotage your weight loss efforts.

“Many people love starting their day with a tasty, nutrient-packed smoothie. However, getting lost in the hype and not paying attention to portions can result in a smoothie that can easily account for a third to half your daily calorie needs,” Susan Macfarlane, an Ottawa-based registered dietitian, told Global News.

Here’s a look at five ways you’re sabotaging what’s supposed to be a healthy smoothie snack or meal.

Sabotage 1: Portion size

You may be guzzling down a smoothie as a snack before mealtime not realizing that it’s enough for an entire meal.

Decide if your smoothie is a meal or a snack and adjust your portions, ingredients and cup size accordingly, suggests Krista Leck Merner, a Halifax-based registered dietitian.

A smoothie with one cup of berries, ¾ cup of Greek yogurt and water makes for a tasty snack, but a smoothie with a banana, spinach, nut butter, hemp hearts and almond milk is a meal-sized smoothie, for example.

These days blenders can hold up to two litres. Your job is to practice portion control.

Tip: Measure your ingredients as you add them instead of just loading up the blender. You can also create “smoothie packs” ahead of time that contain pre-measured ingredients. This will save you time and keep your portions in check.

Sabotage 2: Way too much sugar

There’s a reason why your smoothie tastes so good: a large smoothie made with orange juice, frozen fruit, and flavoured yogurt easily has as many as 20 to 25 teaspoons of sugar, Macfarlane warns.

If you’re making a chocolate smoothie, you could be adding chocolate chips or cacao nibs to your smoothie. Others add honey or maple syrup.

Tip: Instead of using juice, or sweetened milks, stick to water, coconut water, ice or unsweetened almond or soy milk. Rely on a dash of cinnamon or a splash of juice as flavour enhancers.


7 ways you’re sabotaging your ‘healthy’ breakfast smoothie

6:06 Nutrition: Secrets to the perfect smoothie

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It has fruits, veggies, yogurt and protein powder. Your breakfast smoothie is healthy, isn’t it?

Take a second look, dietitians say. More often than not, smoothies are packed with sugar and too many calories, threatening to sabotage your weight loss efforts.

“Many people love starting their day with a tasty, nutrient-packed smoothie. However, getting lost in the hype and not paying attention to portions can result in a smoothie that can easily account for a third to half your daily calorie needs,” Susan Macfarlane, an Ottawa-based registered dietitian, told Global News.

Here’s a look at five ways you’re sabotaging what’s supposed to be a healthy smoothie snack or meal.

Sabotage 1: Portion size

You may be guzzling down a smoothie as a snack before mealtime not realizing that it’s enough for an entire meal.

Decide if your smoothie is a meal or a snack and adjust your portions, ingredients and cup size accordingly, suggests Krista Leck Merner, a Halifax-based registered dietitian.

A smoothie with one cup of berries, ¾ cup of Greek yogurt and water makes for a tasty snack, but a smoothie with a banana, spinach, nut butter, hemp hearts and almond milk is a meal-sized smoothie, for example.

These days blenders can hold up to two litres. Your job is to practice portion control.

Tip: Measure your ingredients as you add them instead of just loading up the blender. You can also create “smoothie packs” ahead of time that contain pre-measured ingredients. This will save you time and keep your portions in check.

Sabotage 2: Way too much sugar

There’s a reason why your smoothie tastes so good: a large smoothie made with orange juice, frozen fruit, and flavoured yogurt easily has as many as 20 to 25 teaspoons of sugar, Macfarlane warns.

If you’re making a chocolate smoothie, you could be adding chocolate chips or cacao nibs to your smoothie. Others add honey or maple syrup.

Tip: Instead of using juice, or sweetened milks, stick to water, coconut water, ice or unsweetened almond or soy milk. Rely on a dash of cinnamon or a splash of juice as flavour enhancers.


7 ways you’re sabotaging your ‘healthy’ breakfast smoothie

6:06 Nutrition: Secrets to the perfect smoothie

  • comments Leave a comment
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It has fruits, veggies, yogurt and protein powder. Your breakfast smoothie is healthy, isn’t it?

Take a second look, dietitians say. More often than not, smoothies are packed with sugar and too many calories, threatening to sabotage your weight loss efforts.

“Many people love starting their day with a tasty, nutrient-packed smoothie. However, getting lost in the hype and not paying attention to portions can result in a smoothie that can easily account for a third to half your daily calorie needs,” Susan Macfarlane, an Ottawa-based registered dietitian, told Global News.

Here’s a look at five ways you’re sabotaging what’s supposed to be a healthy smoothie snack or meal.

Sabotage 1: Portion size

You may be guzzling down a smoothie as a snack before mealtime not realizing that it’s enough for an entire meal.

Decide if your smoothie is a meal or a snack and adjust your portions, ingredients and cup size accordingly, suggests Krista Leck Merner, a Halifax-based registered dietitian.

A smoothie with one cup of berries, ¾ cup of Greek yogurt and water makes for a tasty snack, but a smoothie with a banana, spinach, nut butter, hemp hearts and almond milk is a meal-sized smoothie, for example.

These days blenders can hold up to two litres. Your job is to practice portion control.

Tip: Measure your ingredients as you add them instead of just loading up the blender. You can also create “smoothie packs” ahead of time that contain pre-measured ingredients. This will save you time and keep your portions in check.

Sabotage 2: Way too much sugar

There’s a reason why your smoothie tastes so good: a large smoothie made with orange juice, frozen fruit, and flavoured yogurt easily has as many as 20 to 25 teaspoons of sugar, Macfarlane warns.

If you’re making a chocolate smoothie, you could be adding chocolate chips or cacao nibs to your smoothie. Others add honey or maple syrup.

Tip: Instead of using juice, or sweetened milks, stick to water, coconut water, ice or unsweetened almond or soy milk. Rely on a dash of cinnamon or a splash of juice as flavour enhancers.


7 ways you’re sabotaging your ‘healthy’ breakfast smoothie

6:06 Nutrition: Secrets to the perfect smoothie

  • comments Leave a comment
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It has fruits, veggies, yogurt and protein powder. Your breakfast smoothie is healthy, isn’t it?

Take a second look, dietitians say. More often than not, smoothies are packed with sugar and too many calories, threatening to sabotage your weight loss efforts.

“Many people love starting their day with a tasty, nutrient-packed smoothie. However, getting lost in the hype and not paying attention to portions can result in a smoothie that can easily account for a third to half your daily calorie needs,” Susan Macfarlane, an Ottawa-based registered dietitian, told Global News.

Here’s a look at five ways you’re sabotaging what’s supposed to be a healthy smoothie snack or meal.

Sabotage 1: Portion size

You may be guzzling down a smoothie as a snack before mealtime not realizing that it’s enough for an entire meal.

Decide if your smoothie is a meal or a snack and adjust your portions, ingredients and cup size accordingly, suggests Krista Leck Merner, a Halifax-based registered dietitian.

A smoothie with one cup of berries, ¾ cup of Greek yogurt and water makes for a tasty snack, but a smoothie with a banana, spinach, nut butter, hemp hearts and almond milk is a meal-sized smoothie, for example.

These days blenders can hold up to two litres. Your job is to practice portion control.

Tip: Measure your ingredients as you add them instead of just loading up the blender. You can also create “smoothie packs” ahead of time that contain pre-measured ingredients. This will save you time and keep your portions in check.

Sabotage 2: Way too much sugar

There’s a reason why your smoothie tastes so good: a large smoothie made with orange juice, frozen fruit, and flavoured yogurt easily has as many as 20 to 25 teaspoons of sugar, Macfarlane warns.

If you’re making a chocolate smoothie, you could be adding chocolate chips or cacao nibs to your smoothie. Others add honey or maple syrup.

Tip: Instead of using juice, or sweetened milks, stick to water, coconut water, ice or unsweetened almond or soy milk. Rely on a dash of cinnamon or a splash of juice as flavour enhancers.


7 ways you’re sabotaging your ‘healthy’ breakfast smoothie

6:06 Nutrition: Secrets to the perfect smoothie

  • comments Leave a comment
  • facebook Share this item on Facebook
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  • more Share this item
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It has fruits, veggies, yogurt and protein powder. Your breakfast smoothie is healthy, isn’t it?

Take a second look, dietitians say. More often than not, smoothies are packed with sugar and too many calories, threatening to sabotage your weight loss efforts.

“Many people love starting their day with a tasty, nutrient-packed smoothie. However, getting lost in the hype and not paying attention to portions can result in a smoothie that can easily account for a third to half your daily calorie needs,” Susan Macfarlane, an Ottawa-based registered dietitian, told Global News.

Here’s a look at five ways you’re sabotaging what’s supposed to be a healthy smoothie snack or meal.

Sabotage 1: Portion size

You may be guzzling down a smoothie as a snack before mealtime not realizing that it’s enough for an entire meal.

Decide if your smoothie is a meal or a snack and adjust your portions, ingredients and cup size accordingly, suggests Krista Leck Merner, a Halifax-based registered dietitian.

A smoothie with one cup of berries, ¾ cup of Greek yogurt and water makes for a tasty snack, but a smoothie with a banana, spinach, nut butter, hemp hearts and almond milk is a meal-sized smoothie, for example.

These days blenders can hold up to two litres. Your job is to practice portion control.

Tip: Measure your ingredients as you add them instead of just loading up the blender. You can also create “smoothie packs” ahead of time that contain pre-measured ingredients. This will save you time and keep your portions in check.

Sabotage 2: Way too much sugar

There’s a reason why your smoothie tastes so good: a large smoothie made with orange juice, frozen fruit, and flavoured yogurt easily has as many as 20 to 25 teaspoons of sugar, Macfarlane warns.

If you’re making a chocolate smoothie, you could be adding chocolate chips or cacao nibs to your smoothie. Others add honey or maple syrup.

Tip: Instead of using juice, or sweetened milks, stick to water, coconut water, ice or unsweetened almond or soy milk. Rely on a dash of cinnamon or a splash of juice as flavour enhancers.


7 ways you’re sabotaging your ‘healthy’ breakfast smoothie

6:06 Nutrition: Secrets to the perfect smoothie

  • comments Leave a comment
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It has fruits, veggies, yogurt and protein powder. Your breakfast smoothie is healthy, isn’t it?

Take a second look, dietitians say. More often than not, smoothies are packed with sugar and too many calories, threatening to sabotage your weight loss efforts.

“Many people love starting their day with a tasty, nutrient-packed smoothie. However, getting lost in the hype and not paying attention to portions can result in a smoothie that can easily account for a third to half your daily calorie needs,” Susan Macfarlane, an Ottawa-based registered dietitian, told Global News.

Here’s a look at five ways you’re sabotaging what’s supposed to be a healthy smoothie snack or meal.

Sabotage 1: Portion size

You may be guzzling down a smoothie as a snack before mealtime not realizing that it’s enough for an entire meal.

Decide if your smoothie is a meal or a snack and adjust your portions, ingredients and cup size accordingly, suggests Krista Leck Merner, a Halifax-based registered dietitian.

A smoothie with one cup of berries, ¾ cup of Greek yogurt and water makes for a tasty snack, but a smoothie with a banana, spinach, nut butter, hemp hearts and almond milk is a meal-sized smoothie, for example.

These days blenders can hold up to two litres. Your job is to practice portion control.

Tip: Measure your ingredients as you add them instead of just loading up the blender. You can also create “smoothie packs” ahead of time that contain pre-measured ingredients. This will save you time and keep your portions in check.

Sabotage 2: Way too much sugar

There’s a reason why your smoothie tastes so good: a large smoothie made with orange juice, frozen fruit, and flavoured yogurt easily has as many as 20 to 25 teaspoons of sugar, Macfarlane warns.

If you’re making a chocolate smoothie, you could be adding chocolate chips or cacao nibs to your smoothie. Others add honey or maple syrup.

Tip: Instead of using juice, or sweetened milks, stick to water, coconut water, ice or unsweetened almond or soy milk. Rely on a dash of cinnamon or a splash of juice as flavour enhancers.


7 ways you’re sabotaging your ‘healthy’ breakfast smoothie

6:06 Nutrition: Secrets to the perfect smoothie

  • comments Leave a comment
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It has fruits, veggies, yogurt and protein powder. Your breakfast smoothie is healthy, isn’t it?

Take a second look, dietitians say. More often than not, smoothies are packed with sugar and too many calories, threatening to sabotage your weight loss efforts.

“Many people love starting their day with a tasty, nutrient-packed smoothie. However, getting lost in the hype and not paying attention to portions can result in a smoothie that can easily account for a third to half your daily calorie needs,” Susan Macfarlane, an Ottawa-based registered dietitian, told Global News.

Here’s a look at five ways you’re sabotaging what’s supposed to be a healthy smoothie snack or meal.

Sabotage 1: Portion size

You may be guzzling down a smoothie as a snack before mealtime not realizing that it’s enough for an entire meal.

Decide if your smoothie is a meal or a snack and adjust your portions, ingredients and cup size accordingly, suggests Krista Leck Merner, a Halifax-based registered dietitian.

A smoothie with one cup of berries, ¾ cup of Greek yogurt and water makes for a tasty snack, but a smoothie with a banana, spinach, nut butter, hemp hearts and almond milk is a meal-sized smoothie, for example.

These days blenders can hold up to two litres. Your job is to practice portion control.

Tip: Measure your ingredients as you add them instead of just loading up the blender. You can also create “smoothie packs” ahead of time that contain pre-measured ingredients. This will save you time and keep your portions in check.

Sabotage 2: Way too much sugar

There’s a reason why your smoothie tastes so good: a large smoothie made with orange juice, frozen fruit, and flavoured yogurt easily has as many as 20 to 25 teaspoons of sugar, Macfarlane warns.

If you’re making a chocolate smoothie, you could be adding chocolate chips or cacao nibs to your smoothie. Others add honey or maple syrup.

Tip: Instead of using juice, or sweetened milks, stick to water, coconut water, ice or unsweetened almond or soy milk. Rely on a dash of cinnamon or a splash of juice as flavour enhancers.


7 ways you’re sabotaging your ‘healthy’ breakfast smoothie

6:06 Nutrition: Secrets to the perfect smoothie

  • comments Leave a comment
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It has fruits, veggies, yogurt and protein powder. Your breakfast smoothie is healthy, isn’t it?

Take a second look, dietitians say. More often than not, smoothies are packed with sugar and too many calories, threatening to sabotage your weight loss efforts.

“Many people love starting their day with a tasty, nutrient-packed smoothie. However, getting lost in the hype and not paying attention to portions can result in a smoothie that can easily account for a third to half your daily calorie needs,” Susan Macfarlane, an Ottawa-based registered dietitian, told Global News.

Here’s a look at five ways you’re sabotaging what’s supposed to be a healthy smoothie snack or meal.

Sabotage 1: Portion size

You may be guzzling down a smoothie as a snack before mealtime not realizing that it’s enough for an entire meal.

Decide if your smoothie is a meal or a snack and adjust your portions, ingredients and cup size accordingly, suggests Krista Leck Merner, a Halifax-based registered dietitian.

A smoothie with one cup of berries, ¾ cup of Greek yogurt and water makes for a tasty snack, but a smoothie with a banana, spinach, nut butter, hemp hearts and almond milk is a meal-sized smoothie, for example.

These days blenders can hold up to two litres. Your job is to practice portion control.

Tip: Measure your ingredients as you add them instead of just loading up the blender. You can also create “smoothie packs” ahead of time that contain pre-measured ingredients. This will save you time and keep your portions in check.

Sabotage 2: Way too much sugar

There’s a reason why your smoothie tastes so good: a large smoothie made with orange juice, frozen fruit, and flavoured yogurt easily has as many as 20 to 25 teaspoons of sugar, Macfarlane warns.

If you’re making a chocolate smoothie, you could be adding chocolate chips or cacao nibs to your smoothie. Others add honey or maple syrup.

Tip: Instead of using juice, or sweetened milks, stick to water, coconut water, ice or unsweetened almond or soy milk. Rely on a dash of cinnamon or a splash of juice as flavour enhancers.


7 ways you’re sabotaging your ‘healthy’ breakfast smoothie

6:06 Nutrition: Secrets to the perfect smoothie

  • comments Leave a comment
  • facebook Share this item on Facebook
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  • more Share this item
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It has fruits, veggies, yogurt and protein powder. Your breakfast smoothie is healthy, isn’t it?

Take a second look, dietitians say. More often than not, smoothies are packed with sugar and too many calories, threatening to sabotage your weight loss efforts.

“Many people love starting their day with a tasty, nutrient-packed smoothie. However, getting lost in the hype and not paying attention to portions can result in a smoothie that can easily account for a third to half your daily calorie needs,” Susan Macfarlane, an Ottawa-based registered dietitian, told Global News.

Here’s a look at five ways you’re sabotaging what’s supposed to be a healthy smoothie snack or meal.

Sabotage 1: Portion size

You may be guzzling down a smoothie as a snack before mealtime not realizing that it’s enough for an entire meal.

Decide if your smoothie is a meal or a snack and adjust your portions, ingredients and cup size accordingly, suggests Krista Leck Merner, a Halifax-based registered dietitian.

A smoothie with one cup of berries, ¾ cup of Greek yogurt and water makes for a tasty snack, but a smoothie with a banana, spinach, nut butter, hemp hearts and almond milk is a meal-sized smoothie, for example.

These days blenders can hold up to two litres. Your job is to practice portion control.

Tip: Measure your ingredients as you add them instead of just loading up the blender. You can also create “smoothie packs” ahead of time that contain pre-measured ingredients. This will save you time and keep your portions in check.

Sabotage 2: Way too much sugar

There’s a reason why your smoothie tastes so good: a large smoothie made with orange juice, frozen fruit, and flavoured yogurt easily has as many as 20 to 25 teaspoons of sugar, Macfarlane warns.

If you’re making a chocolate smoothie, you could be adding chocolate chips or cacao nibs to your smoothie. Others add honey or maple syrup.

Tip: Instead of using juice, or sweetened milks, stick to water, coconut water, ice or unsweetened almond or soy milk. Rely on a dash of cinnamon or a splash of juice as flavour enhancers.


7 ways you’re sabotaging your ‘healthy’ breakfast smoothie

6:06 Nutrition: Secrets to the perfect smoothie

  • comments Leave a comment
  • facebook Share this item on Facebook
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It has fruits, veggies, yogurt and protein powder. Your breakfast smoothie is healthy, isn’t it?

Take a second look, dietitians say. More often than not, smoothies are packed with sugar and too many calories, threatening to sabotage your weight loss efforts.

“Many people love starting their day with a tasty, nutrient-packed smoothie. However, getting lost in the hype and not paying attention to portions can result in a smoothie that can easily account for a third to half your daily calorie needs,” Susan Macfarlane, an Ottawa-based registered dietitian, told Global News.

Here’s a look at five ways you’re sabotaging what’s supposed to be a healthy smoothie snack or meal.

Sabotage 1: Portion size

You may be guzzling down a smoothie as a snack before mealtime not realizing that it’s enough for an entire meal.

Decide if your smoothie is a meal or a snack and adjust your portions, ingredients and cup size accordingly, suggests Krista Leck Merner, a Halifax-based registered dietitian.

A smoothie with one cup of berries, ¾ cup of Greek yogurt and water makes for a tasty snack, but a smoothie with a banana, spinach, nut butter, hemp hearts and almond milk is a meal-sized smoothie, for example.

These days blenders can hold up to two litres. Your job is to practice portion control.

Tip: Measure your ingredients as you add them instead of just loading up the blender. You can also create “smoothie packs” ahead of time that contain pre-measured ingredients. This will save you time and keep your portions in check.

Sabotage 2: Way too much sugar

There’s a reason why your smoothie tastes so good: a large smoothie made with orange juice, frozen fruit, and flavoured yogurt easily has as many as 20 to 25 teaspoons of sugar, Macfarlane warns.

If you’re making a chocolate smoothie, you could be adding chocolate chips or cacao nibs to your smoothie. Others add honey or maple syrup.

Tip: Instead of using juice, or sweetened milks, stick to water, coconut water, ice or unsweetened almond or soy milk. Rely on a dash of cinnamon or a splash of juice as flavour enhancers.



Comments:

  1. Marchland

    It is a pity that I will not be able to participate in the discussion now. Very little information. But I will be happy to follow this topic.



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