Green smoothies, which are packed with nutrient-dense fruits and veggies, are gaining popularity for one main reason: They actually work. Even better, they're made from whole foods and they're totally affordable, even for a large family. In just five minutes, you can start making your own green smoothies. Get ready to see and feel a real difference in your health.
What Is a Green Smoothie?
You don’t have to be on a strict vegan, vegetarian, or even raw food diet to enjoy the health benefits of green smoothies. And you don’t have to eliminate any foods that you’re already eating or enjoying. The idea behind green smoothies is to drink one smoothie a day as a complement to your current diet. With just that change alone, you should start to see results. Here are a few things to know about green smoothies:
- You make green smoothies in a blender by using three main ingredients: leafy green veggies, fruits, and a liquid base, such as water, almond milk, or coconut water.
- Green smoothies take less than five minutes to make. They’re truly the fastest and easiest way to start improving your diet. You don’t need any special culinary skills to make green smoothies.
- Green smoothies will keep in the fridge for up to two days. That means you can make them in advance the night before school or work and in the morning be ready to leave the house on time with a healthy drink in hand!
- Green smoothies are affordable. You don’t need any expensive equipment or ingredients to make green smoothies.
- Unlike green juice made in a juicer, green smoothies keep all the fiber in the fruits and veggies intact. The fiber keeps you fuller longer, helps regulate blood sugars, and reduces food cravings, making losing weight and keeping it off easier.
- Green smoothies are full of minerals, such as calcium, zinc, potassium, manganese, magnesium, and selenium and are loaded with vitamins C, A, E, and B complex.
- The high amounts of antioxidants in green smoothies make them a perfect anti-cancer and anti-inflammatory food.
- Dark leafy greens are the star ingredient in green smoothies because most people today simply aren’t eating enough greens. Adding fruits hides the bitter taste of the greens.
- Because green smoothies are blended into liquid form, they’re easy to digest and absorb.
- Green smoothies are great for breakfast, before or after workouts, or as an afternoon snack to give you a healthy boost of natural energy. They’re wonderful for kids and adults. Your whole family can get in on the healthy fun!
- By having a green smoothie once a day, you can naturally start to “crowd out” refined and processed foods with natural, whole, pure foods.
- You can use green smoothies to do a mini-detox at home for one, two, or three days, or try a once-a-week detox.
3 Steps to Making Green Smoothies
Green smoothies are easy to make, but unless you have a super high-powered blender, you can’t just throw everything in at once and blend. To make a great green smoothie, follow these basic rules:
- Choose two or three different types of sweet or savory fruits, such as apple and banana or avocado, cucumber, and tomato.
- Add your fruits to the blender with water and blend.
If you’re using a household blender, this step is really important; if you don’t blend the fruit and water before adding the greens, you’re liable to burn out your blender’s motor.
- Add leafy greens such as kale, spinach, or Swiss chard and blend again until smooth; then drink up!
Add Superfoods to Green Smoothies
After you have the basic green smoothie recipe down pat, you can start branching out by adding superfoods for even more minerals, vitamins, chlorophyll, protein, or antioxidants. Look for 100-percent certified organic superfood products to avoid any low-quality added fillers. Here are some top superfood picks and reputable companies that make them:
- Navitas Organics
- Cacao powder
- Acai powder
- Goji berries
- Wheatgrass powder
- Maca powder
- Hemp seed protein
- Chia seeds
- Ground flaxseed
- Coconut oil
- HealthForce SuperFoods
- Chlorella powder
- Spirulina powder
- Vitamineral Green (a green powder blend consisting of alfalfa, wheatgrass, kelp, spirulina, and many other leafy greens)
- Friendly Force (a probiotic blend)
- Amazing Grass
- Green superfood blends such as Berry Green, Chocolate Green, Energy Green, Orange Dreamsicle, Pumpkin Spice, and Pineapple Lemongrass
Use Green Smoothies to Achieve Your Health Goals
With a green smoothie in hand, you can drink your way to an excellent state of health. What will your green smoothie success story be? Here are just a few health benefits you can achieve:
- Lose weight: The fiber in green smoothies keeps you fuller longer. Leafy greens help stabilize blood sugars and reduce cravings. Green smoothies are low in calories, too (as long as you leave out healthy fats such as nut butter, avocado, and coconut oil).
- Gain energy: Such a high nutrient dense drink is bound to get you feeling energized.
- Clear skin: A diet high in fresh fruit and greens cleans your body and detoxifies your skin naturally. The antioxidants in green smoothies are fantastic for promoting anti-aging effects and flawless skin.
- Reduce cholesterol and cardiovascular risk: Studies show that a high-fiber, plant-based diet is excellent for improving heart health, controlling blood pressure, and lowering cholesterol.
- Minimize arthritic pain: Chlorophyll in leafy greens helps in repairing joints, and the alkalizing effect of green smoothies lowers pain associated with arthritis.
- Relieve acid reflux: The combination of fruits and greens in a green smoothie provides fantastic relief from and prevention of heartburn.
- Strengthen immune system: Drinking a green smoothie daily not only boosts your immune system but also helps reduce future risk for degenerative diseases.