Sometimes the good old basics are the best. Recently I have been super into adding lots of additional antioxidant rich superfoods, and adaptogenic (hormone and stress balancing) supplements to my smoothies but for those that are just starting out on their health journey those ingredients may seem a little overwhelming.
This week when I was heading back from the gym I was thinking about how far we as a culture in many ways have come to embracing health and wellness as an incredible powerful part of our lives and conversations. But it is important to remember that we are all on our own individual journeys, and there is nothing that bothers me more than someone feeling overwhelmed and discouraged before they have even begun.
When I got back into my kitchen I thought about what would be the most basic smoothie, perfect for someone who is looking to make a healthy change, but needs to start out with something they were comfortable with, and low and behold I came back to probably one of my most favorite smoothies of all time, so simple, so balanced, and if I am going to be honest it was just what I was needing. Nothing fancy, few ingredients, and so tasty.
So if you are someone who has just stumbled upon The Well Essentials or has been a devoted reader I encourage you to remind yourself that making healthy choices doesn't need to be complicated. While there are so many wonderful nutrient rich supplements, and superfoods we can be adding into our days...we don't have to, to be healthy. All you really need are a few of the basics, and a little self-love and consistency.
When making a smoothie I always like to make sure it is balanced, no matter how complex or simple, it will always have these four things.
Four Keys to a balanced smoothie
- Protein: Minimum of 10g per 16 oz serving
- Fiber: Fruits/Vegetables/Psyllium Husk these fibrous foods help our digestion, support a stable blood sugar, and keep us feeling full longer.
- Healthy Fat: Help maintain a stable blood sugar, and keep our bodies feeling satiated longer. Also important for our skin and heart health.
- Low-Sugar: Note I did not say NO sugar, I said low sugar. Smoothies can be filled with 6-10 servings of fruit, added sugars, and processed juices and promoted as a health food. Our bodies do not need that much sugar, which is why I limit my smoothies to 1/2 cup higher glycemic index fruits (such as mango/papaya/banana) or 1 cup of low-glycemic index fruits such as berries.
Simple Cocoa Peanut Butter Protein Smoothie
- 1 scoop vegan chocolate protein
- 1 tablespoon raw cacao powder
- 1 tablespoon natural peanut butter
- 2 cups unsweetened almond milk
- 1 tsp cinnamon
- 4 ice cubes
- Optional: 1/2 cup frozen cauliflower for added thickening, 1 tsp maca powder for hormone balancing
- Combine all ingredients in a high-speed blender and blend until smooth, and froth appears at the top of the blended mixture.
- Pour over ice and enjoy!