Well, I certainly like my eggs in the morning. And even the occasional bowl of oats with lots of peanut butter. And bacon. Always bacon. Smoothies though? It’s complicated. I’ve had a weird relationship with breakfast smoothies for as long as I can remember. I know they’re supposed to be this poster child for an uber healthy breakfast, I know they taste like heaven [hello Peaches n’ Cream Smoothie] and they seem like the perfect on the go solution to breakfast. But I’m starving by 10 AM. General rule of thumb: if you’re starving by 10 AM, your breakfast sucked.So here’s my super scientific analysis of the situation -smoothies are generally fruit based. Fruit consists of quick burning carbs. Quick burning carbs burn quickly and make you hungry. Science.
Let’s review the anatomy of a balanced meal: carbs for energy + protein for satiety and metabolism support + fat for satiety, brain power, and blood sugar balance + fiber to slow down carbohydrate absorption and keep us full til the next meal.
I’m conscious all day about my meal choices, cuz I prefer to feel awesome. I’m always checking with myself to be sure I’m incorporating all 4 components of a balanced meal every time I eat. But I’m especially careful in the morning to be sure my breakfast is extra balanced to keep my blood sugar steady all morning. I usually have no time for midmorning snacks and I need serious energy to get to lunch because like most of my readers, I’m go go go all morning.
Anyways, back to smoothie makin’. I recently experimented with a *perfectly* balanced smoothie [I even entered the ingredients into My Fitness Pal to be sure I was hittin’ them macros] and ya know what? I wasn’t hungry until lunch. Imagine that. I followed my own advice and found success. Let this be a lesson to all those who surround me and take
orders advice from me.So here you go! The anatomy of a perfect breakfast smoothie!
- 2 servings of fat [~20 grams] like a handful of nuts, a couple tablespoons of nut butter, 1/2 cup full fat coconut cream or a small avocado
- 1 serving of carbohydrate like 1/2 banana, 1 apple, 3/4 cup berries, 1 c kale
- 1 serving of protein like a scoop of grass fed whey or plant based protein powder. Not into protein powders? Use 1 c full fat, plain Greek yogurt and cut out one serving of fat.
- at 10 least grams of fiber. This is more tricky, but chia seeds, avocados and flax seeds are the way to go to add lots of fiber to your smoothie.
- Greens. I know, I gotta sneak ’em in. The phytonutrients in spinach give so much energy and life, you just can’t afford to skip it!
This is my favorite version because it’s only 5 ingredients and to be honest, you really can’t beat the taste. It’s so simple and perfect.
- 1 c unsweetened almond milk
- ½ frozen banana
- 2 c spinach
- 1 scoop high quality protein powder - vanilla or chocolate [grass fed whey or plant based]
- 2 Tbsp almond butter
- 1 Tbsp chia seeds
- handful of ice
- Combine everything into a high speed blender, in order. Or at least put the almond milk in first to prevent clumps - trust me!
Use peanut butter or cashew butter.
Try different flavors of protein powder.
Keep bananas in the freezer at all times. Must. Use. Frozen. Bananas. Trust me!
Add a pinch of stevia or a date or two to sweeten. Resist adding too much fruit, though. Simple carbs won't give you the energy you need to power through the morning.