Tuesday, 3 January 2017

Smoothies 101

No Fail Chocolate Cherry Smoothie

Happy 2017 (!!) and welcome to our first Wellness Wednesday of the New Year! I don't know about you but I am not sure where 2016 went. The arrival of a new year is often marked by plans and resolutions for change. 

Health related resolutions are often a common theme. For a lot of reasons (including the pressure), I am on the fence about 'resolutions', especially the full 'upheaval' type resolutions, instead leaning towards just small, realistic changes to move towards your goals. So, we at the Coach House, have decided to focus our next few Wellness Wednesdays on easy tips that you can start incorporating into your life right now to move towards those health goals you may have set. To get the ball rolling, I am going to share my no fail chocolate cherry smoothie recipe. 

Smoothies can be a GREAT breakfast option however, often times the basic recipes you find lack fat and protein and are simply loaded with sugar and carbohydrates. This type of smoothie will not keep you satisfied long, and you will still fall prey to the dreaded 10am 'hangry'.

Here's the example, I typed basic smoothie recipe into google and what came up:

So let's look at the nutrition of the basic smoothie recipe from food.com.

Note: The recipe does say serving size is 2, so, we'll divide everything.

This 'basic smoothie' will serve you up just 1 gram of fat; 5 grams of protein and a whopping 34 grams of carbohydrates almost all of which is sugar- 27.5 grams of it to be exact with 5 grams of fibre less than a quarter of the carbohydrate content. This smoothie will taste delicious for sure, because it is pretty much just sugar. It will spike your blood sugar and then let it plummet leaving you feeling hungry, tired and probably cranky.

Smoothies are only good breakfast (or meal) options when they contain fat and protein to level out the carbohydrates provided by the fruit.

Chocolate Cherry Smoothie

(serves 2)

1 1/2 cups of water (adjust this to desired consistency)
1/2 chocolate almond milk
1-2 tbsp chia seeds (can pre-grind if not using a high powered blender)
1-2 tbsp flaxseeds (pre-ground if not using a high powered blender)
1 generous tbsp nut butter (almond butter, mixed nut, etc)
1 generous tbsp cocoa powder
1 1/2 scoops protein powder (I generally recommend Vegan)
1/4-1/3 cup frozen raspberries
1/4-1/3 cup frozen cherries
4 ice cubes

Add to the blender starting with liquids, then solids/powders and ending with frozen ingredients. Blend until smooth. Enjoy!

And for the nutritional break down:

 Again, serving size is for 2, so we'll divide.

With the reduction in juice and fruit and addition of protein and healthy fat, this makes for a very healthy breakfast option. Loading you with 20 grams of protein (vs 5 grams), 9 grams of fat (vs 1 gram) and reducing your sugar to 8.5 grams from a whopping 27.5 grams! Your carbs in general drop from the 34 grams to almost half at 20 grams a large majority of which (almost half) from fibre in this smoothie recipe. You can adjust it even more by adding extra seeds or a scoop of coconut oil.

Smoothies can be a quick, easy and delicious meal option- not just for breakfast, but it's important to do it the right way or it quickly becomes just a glass of sugars. We hope you enjoy this easy smoothie recipe and it helps to revitalize your breakfast routine!

~The Coach House Team~

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