When trying to lose weight, many people become discouraged because they focus on the things they can no longer eat. When viewed this way, a weight loss goal can become a mental struggle of avoiding cravings for favorite snacks.
Some people even try to skip meals and combat hunger throughout the day, which can do a great deal of harm and little good.
However, with the help of delicious green smoothies, your weight loss plan can center around delicious, satisfying smoothies that you can actually look forward to, with an endless variety of healthy ingredients that you can mix and match to your whim. Alongside nutritious meals, green smoothies can satisfy your most intense cravings, and keep you full and energetic throughout the day.
Adding some green to your smoothie can aid in weight loss efforts in a variety of ways. Leafy greens such as spinach, kale, arugula and Swiss chard are high in protein and fiber, as well as a multitude of vitamins, minerals and antioxidants.
The protein in greens can rev up your metabolism, giving you more energy to exercise, and the fiber can keep you feeling full long after your smoothie glass is empty.
As greens provide such a complete range of nutrients, you will feel satisfied, refreshed and mentally sharp after drinking them. This feeling of rejuvenation and mental focus can keep you motivated to stay on top of your weight loss goals.
Switching up the greens, fruits and other veggies in your smoothie is a delicious way to get excited about eating/drinking healthy, rather than having it be a chore.
For even more fat-busting power, add some healthy fats to your smoothies. As we explored in more detail in a previous article, healthy fats such as omega-3 fatty acids and the medium-chain fatty acids (MCFAs) found in organic coconut oil have been shown to boost weight loss efforts, and even tackle stubborn belly fat.
Consider adding a teaspoon of organic coconut oil, a few slices of avocado and/or some grass-fed, live culture yogurt to the mix. Natural yogurt also has the benefit of supporting healthy gut bacteria for better elimination and improved overall health. Chia seeds are a great smoothie staple that provide protein, fiber and essential omega-3s.
To incorporate smoothies into your weight loss plan, simply whip up your favorite concoction every time you have a craving for a snack. Some people also choose to drink a smoothie with their meals, so that they can enjoy a lighter meal.
Having one before or after exercise is also a great idea – it’s all about experimenting to find what works for you. However, it is very important to still eat regular, healthy meals – smoothie starvation diets are rarely effective and can be dangerous.
While there are an endless variety of ways to make a green smoothie, below is one delicious idea to try:
Green Banana Extraordinaire
- 1 cup brewed green tea, chilled
- 1 ripe banana
- ½ cup blueberries
- ½ avocado
- 1 cup spinach leaves
- 1 tablespoon chia seeds
- ½ tablespoon organic, extra virgin coconut oil
Blend ingredients together, and enjoy! You may need to experiment with ingredient quantities to get your desired consistency. For those who like spice, add ½ teaspoon of cayenne pepper. Not only does this add a kick to your smoothie, cayenne pepper has also been shown to help curb cravings.
This summer, go green!
-The Alternative Daily