5 Tips To Make a Healthy Smoothie

You killed your cardio session, kicked your own ass on the mat, and sweated out a half-day’s calories. Now you’re ready to refuel, looking for the perfect beverage to hydrate and reward yourself simultaneously.  It should taste great without undoing your hard work.

There’s some debate as to what makes a good recovery beverage. I’m no expert, but I can tell you that sports drinks are probably not the answer. Many are laden with sugar, artificial colors, and vitamins you’ll probably just excrete through urination.

So what should you drink post workout? Smoothie fans would argue that an antioxidant blast of fresh fruit or veggies is just what you need.

Whatever you choose to sip, be sure you’re hydrating properly to replace lost fluids after your workout. Aim for around 200 to 300 calories with a shot of carbohydrates to replenish lost glycogen and keep you fueled for the day. Here are 5 tips to make a healthy smoothie…

5 Tips to Make a Healthy Smoothie 

When it comes to making healthy smoothies that taste as good as they look, there’s not much to know. Really. Any monkey can toss a banana and some ice into a blender. But one thing I’ve learned in all my smoothie-making experiments is that you may be surprised at what actually works. Check the fridge and the cupboards, toss in whatever looks tasty, and hit that magic mixing button.

You don’t have to have any culinary skills to make a delicious smoothie. That said, here are my suggestions for making your healthiest beverages…

1. Get Greens 

Include plenty of greens in your smoothie. Green vegetables such as kale and spinach are among the most nutrient-dense foods. They help keep your body balanced by creating a more alkaline environment. Foods that help raise the alkalinity in your body include fruits, veggies, certain nuts and seeds, soybeans and tofu. Processed foods do the opposite. By raising acid levels, they make you more prone to illness, disease, and accelerated aging.

2. Use Organic Produce

Use organic produce whenever possible, especially when it comes to spinach, as the EWG (Environmental Working Group) says it’s among the dirtiest produce you can purchase. Along with strawberries and apples, it’s one of the most heavily sprayed with pesticides — which won’t simply wash off. Since organic foods can be pricey, it literately pays to know which produce is safe to eat when it’s non organic. Bananas are an example, as their thick peels prevent pesticides from leaching into the fruit–which leads me to my third tip…

3. Go Bananas!

The potassium in a banana helps stimulate your muscles, nerves, and brain cells. But bananas may also improve your mood, thanks to tryptophan, which helps your body produce serotonin (a feel-good brain chemical). Peel your bananas when they’re ripe and store them in a freezer bag so they’re ready to toss in the blender.

4. Use Frozen Berries

Use frozen berries in place of ice, or in addition to ice. They make smoothies so darn refreshing, and the sweet punch of fruit makes any smoothie recipe better.

5. Add Protein

Protein is a must for fitness buffs and yoga mat monkeys. Experts say using protein powders is most beneficial within 30 minutes of exercising because it provides needed amino acids to muscles. Nuts are another great protein source, so use them in your smoothie by pulsing them in a blender or gadget in advance.

If you’re looking for recipe ideas, check out My Secret Weapon Smoothie.

Here are some other awesome places to look…

Blueberry Chocolate Protein Smoothie 

Banana Split Protein Smoothie 

Apple Pumpkin Pie Smoothie

Chocolate Avocado Paelo Smoothie 

Strawberry Smoothie 

Do you have a favorite post-workout smoothie or drink?

24 Comments
  • Kwame
    November 21, 2015

    Thanks for these tips. I’m going to start using frozen berries more frequently, I never thought about it as an ice substitute. Great point. Peanut or almond butter is my protein of choice. Oh how I love a good peanut butter banana smoothie with spinach or kale. So yummy. Now I’m hungry.

    • Rica Lewis
      November 21, 2015

      Ha ha, Kwame. I will have to grab some peanut butter now. It’s the weekend, so that smoothie deserves a bit of chocolate too!

  • Janice Wald
    November 21, 2015

    Hi Rica,
    I love soothies. Strawberry banana is my favorite.
    Thanks for visiting my site today and coming to my blog party.
    Janice

    • Rica Lewis
      November 21, 2015

      My pleasure, Janis! Thanks for hosting the blog bash 🙂

  • Melissa
    November 21, 2015

    I love a smoothie. So good!!!
    –Melissa
    http://Www.melissamchee.com

  • Kyah
    November 22, 2015

    Love this and will be sharing it/saving it for sure. I’m so boring with an after workout drink… water or nothing usually! So I’m interested to try smoothies directly after!

    Kyah – http://www.weekendtempo.com

    • Rica Lewis
      November 22, 2015

      Yes! I hope you enjoy your new beverages, Kyah. Thanks for reading and commenting.

  • Vicki
    November 29, 2015

    Love these ideas!! Definitely have to share with my fellow smoothie lovers! Thanks for sharing 🙂

  • Christine
    May 3, 2016

    Thanks for the tips and for the different smoothie ideas. I love to bananas in my smoothies but I am always looking for something new to try too.

    • Rica Lewis
      May 3, 2016

      There are some awesome recipes out there, Christine! Happy smoothie making. 😀

  • Carla
    May 3, 2016

    I was so glad to see this post. I just got a Magic Bullet and I’m still trying to figure out what to put in it! Thanks.

  • Brandy
    May 3, 2016

    These are some really great tips, I will use them as I work towards making more smoothies with my kiddos. Loving this idea.

  • Jessica Bradshaw
    May 3, 2016

    I love smoothies and I do all of those tips daily!! Thank you for sharing. 🙂

    • Rica Lewis
      May 3, 2016

      That’s great, Jessica. Let’s compare recipes sometime 🙂

  • Crazy shenanigans
    May 3, 2016

    I need to eat more smoothies! All good tips!

    • Rica Lewis
      May 4, 2016

      Thank you, Crazy Shenanigans. Love that name, by the way!

  • Liv
    May 4, 2016

    I love a good smoothie but admit I’m more prone to go for something unhealthy…

    Great post workout tips!

    • Rica Lewis
      May 4, 2016

      Thanks, Liv! I know the unhealthy stuff is tempting! But I’ve discovered by adding a few tablespoons of cocoa to my smoothies, I can get that chocolate shake taste in a healthier version made with avocado, almond milk and stevia sweetener. It’s a great option!

  • Susannah
    May 4, 2016

    <3<3<3 I love smoothies!!! Thanks for the tips!

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