Banana and Blueberry smoothie summer breakfast with vanilla sticks.

Banana and Blueberry smoothie summer breakfast with vanilla sticks.

I often have clients tell me how I’d be so proud of them because they whipped up a delicious smoothie for breakfast. When I ask what they put in their smoothie, I hear things like – “bananas, strawberries, yogurt, orange juice and milk.”

 

Here’s the problem with most peoples smoothies…
The ingredients.  Yes, the ingredients I mentioned -the ones almost everyone uses to make a “healthy” smoothie…are all “healthy”… but a common oversight people have is that combinations like this leads to a meal or snack that is very high in sugar.

 

Smoothies made with lots of fruit and combined with juice and or sweetened yogurt often contain little to no protein or fat (ratio-wise) and will cause a spike in your blood sugar and a release of the insulin hormone which will then result in unwanted fat storage, energy crashes and perpetuates sugar cravings.  You see, fruits are great and high in antioxidants and vitamins, but they are also sweet (especially fruit juice!) and rich in fructose (fruit sugar), so having too much fruit and combining it with sweetened yogurt or juice can cause blood sugar issues and insulin sensitivity just the way a bagel or donut might!

 

You might be surprised to know that one of the most common ingredients in smoothies that spikes overall sugar content is yogurt?!  I’ll explain more by pasting an email conversation I had with a client (see below).

 


Client Question:

What do you think of this for my breakfast shake?
  • small apple
  • small banana or half a large (frozen)
  • 1 container of Activia vanilla yogurt (the small one)
  • 1/2 teas cinnamon
  • Almond milk and ice to a good consistency.

 

Me:
If using 3/4 cup almond milk, check out the break downs of each listed:

The one on the right is using Activia (4 oz.), the one on the left is replacing Activia(4 oz.) with protein powder.  Why do this?  As you will learn going forward, creating balance within meals is a key to having balanced blood sugar, reduced fat storage, satiation and more even energy levels.  It is also important for active people to get enough protein.  The one on the right is really high (ratio-wise) in carbs and especially sugar.  Replacing the Activia reduces sugar by almost half, reduces overall carbs and increases protein.  Try it and see how it tastes.

 Screen Shot 2016-09-02 at 11.31.50 AM

 

If you’re a smoothie lover and making them regularly, you don’t have to give them up or choke down disgusting tasting “chopped up salad” that tastes “like it was scraped off the top of a pond” lol.  Just be sure to take a look at the overall sugar content in your smoothie…start minimizing sugary ingredients and balancing with protein powder and healthy fats.

In fact, start to minimize sugar in general. If you’re eating too much fruit, find yourself snacking on treats everyday or snooping around the kitchen after 10pm looking for a sweet fix, that’s a sign that your blood sugar is imbalanced and it is probably sabotaging your progress.

Interested in more information about balanced nutrition?  Email me to receive the FREE 10 Day Fitness Reset program that sparked the conversation above!

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