This is a continuation from a post that I published recently, which you can find HERE.
Try convenient, fast foods to quickly add high amounts of nutrients to the diet
I like the idea of green smoothies immensely… First, they are convenient once you get a routine down. Also, they are a great way to sneak lots of greens in, in an often delicious way. They can help to regulate weight and they could potentially be used as one’s only source of calories and nutrition for a length of time.
I know because I went 2+ months on just green smoothies all day every day, while running a full time business, going to the gym regularly and spending lots of time with friends and family. I had an abundance of energy and felt great, plus it was simple to stick to, providing I had smoothies on hand regularly.
Tips for staying in the daily habit of consuming green smoothies
Before I get into a working mother’s quick tips which kept her children consuming daily green smoothies for the past 4+ years, I will share with you a few tips of my own.
I like my smoothies fresh, but that isn’t always practical when I’m working or out somewhere, so what I generally do is make at least 1L-2L of green smoothie in one go. I usually finish 1L in a short time, but otherwise I just keep it in the fridge and consume throughout the day.
When I’m out hiking or something I will bring one or more liters along with me. I usually have a backpack with some energy bars, so I also pack in glass jars with smoothies and water as well. I may or may not add a cooling pack into the bag along with it. The smoothie lasts a surprisingly long time without fermenting or losing flavour.
A typical smoothie is water, fruit (frozen or fresh) and dark leafy greens. The ratio depends on your “taste for greens” which I found improves dramatically over time.
A great starter smoothie that I still consume today has blueberries, water, freshly squeezed orange juice, a banana and parsley. When made right it tastes a lot like bubble gum.
14-pound green smoothie weight loss tips from a working mom
Donna, an avid green smoothie drinker, decided to shed some more weight and chose to replace 2 meals each day with green smoothies (instead of her typical one) and eat “healthy-ish” for the rest of the day, but have an “anything” goes day one day over each weekend. She managed to drop 14 pounds in 3 weeks following this approach, and people noticed!
I emailed her and asked her if she’d share some tips for simplifying the process of having green smoothies daily for her and her children, and replacing meals to help her lose weight in three weeks. Here is her response:
It wasn’t actually 3 weeks, it was 24 days so stop telling people 3 weeks 🙂
I’ve got “green smoothies” down to a science now. It helps to have a big blender, I’m glad Matt sent us the bigger Blendtec.
To prepare for the day, the night before I fill the blender with the ingredients and keep it in the fridge ready to blend in the morning. Depends on how many I need to make I might make a fresh batch mid-day sometime too.
In the past it was always better to start with water or other liquid at the bottom, but it doesn’t much matter with this blender, but I still do out of habit. I choose fruit to add at random, but always a low glycemic berry of some kind. Then I choose a handful or two of greens at random. Sometimes I will add vegan DHA oil, ground flax, chia gel, a scoop of raw hemp seeds, a scoop of Vega, an avocado, maca root, or some other strange ingredient you sometimes bring over 😉 but mostly it’s just fruit, greens and water.
I always have fresh greens on hand. It helps when buying the greens with the ball root in tact because it stays healthy longer. Growing some of my own in the house or back garden would certainly help keep fresh stock, but I don’t count on it. Occasionally I’ll pick wild dandelion or other green.
As for fruit, I like to juice fresh oranges sometimes to add in. Plus, I like to peel and cut up fresh fruit, especially mango, pineapple and banana, but I always try to add in berries. Worse case, I use frozen fruit. When using fresh, I like to add ice cubes.
It helps to have a lot of Mason jars around, but when I had only 3 or 4 I made sure I always cleaned them immediately. Also, cleaning the blender immediately helps when extra motivation is needed to make the next smoothie. Like you, I agree that smoothies “hit the spot”, and I also agree that if a smoothie is not readily available when hunger strikes, that other more convenient, less healthy options seem more desirable and sometimes even strangely justified! So, to avoid falling in that trap I always prepare ahead of time. I’m at the stage now where I’ll stand on my head and make a smoothie with my feet if I have to but the first couple years weren’t so easy.
I definitely say not to try to “blend salads” like we tried to do before learning about green smoothies from Victoria’s book. I don’t want to plug my nose and resist the urge to vomit to try to be healthy. Green smoothies when done right taste great. I have a bunch of recipes that I use regularly, I will copy them down one day and send them to you, but whenever I am “testing” a new green, I always just put a higher ratio of fruit in than normal and go from there.
Oh, it also helps in public to have a non see-through drinking container. I used to worry more about that than I do now, now I bring a Mason jar full of green liquid to work, it’s definitely a conversation piece!
I have no real tips to share about encouraging kids to drink smoothies. Ours have always just drank them and they always ask for more. Your ideas for encouraging them to drink juiced greens could probably help with smoothies as well.
A few more tips… the kids like it more thin and “juice like” then they do thick and “smoothie like”. I don’t know if that will be the same for others though. Also, with the old blender I had to rip apart the greens into smaller peieces before blending. Dandelion and other bitters are best used in small amounts. Even though we crave greens, our palettes do not appreciate dandelion greens as much, but they are super healthy so we include them in small amounts regularly. Bananas, all berries, parsley, kale, and spinach are all staples in our green smoothie household. A big container of spinach never goes to waste. And although we have never fell victim to it, according to Victoria, it’s always good to “rotate” greens to avoid that build up of any particular toxin that nature injects into a green to avoid over eating in the wild. It makes sense to me not do the exact same thing day in and day out anyway so we use different greens and other ingredients regularly. Don’t drink them too fast either. They do seem to digest easily enough in general but I found that downing them causes a belly ache and it just doesn’t seem to have the same positive effect overall. That’s all I’ve got for now, if I can think of anything else I’ll let you know. And I’ll send the recipes over when I finish writing them out.
Hope you enjoyed this quick guide!