Q: How can I make healthy smoothies at home? What are the best ingredients?
A: Homemade smoothies are a fast and easy way to fit high-quality nutrition into your day. "Homemade" is key, as most commercial/premade smoothies are packed with simple sugars and enough calories to fuel your entire workday, putting you on the fast track to developing diabetes.
Here's a foolproof plan (plus a few of my favorite smoothie recipes) for mixing the perfect meal or snack every time. Simply fill your blender with a little from each of the following categories, and you're guaranteed to get a nutritionist-approved final product.
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Your optimized smoothie is a great opportunity to get in a variety of essential fatty acids. Walnuts are my personal favorite because they blend well and don't leave any grit at the bottom of your cup. They also deliver an impressive blend of mono and polyunsaturated fats, including omega-3 fats.
Other good choices: Pistachios, almonds, natural peanut butter, and canned coconut milk. If you want more omega-3s in your diet, try adding flaxseed oil. Flaxseed oil is not very heat stable so you can't cook with it, and the strong flavor makes it a poor choice for salad dressing (unless you get garlic-chili infused flaxssed oil, which is delicious). Therefore, adding flaxseed oil to your smoothie is the perfect way to incorporate it into your diet.
How much to use: 1 tablespoon of oil or 2-4 tablespoons of nuts