Smoothies are quick to make as well as being suitable for those with a sweet tooth. They can satisfy sugar cravings when combined with fruits like strawberries and bananas. Kim Pearson is a nutritionist who runs a weight loss clinic in London’s Harley Street. She has shared her tips and tricks on smoothies with the Express.co.uk.
She says: “Smoothies are something I recommend are something I recommend to a lot of my clients. They can be a quick, tasty and healthy breakfast option that can keep you satisfied until lunch.
“The important thing is to make sure your smoothie is structured in the right way because when they’re not, they can hide a surprising amount of sugar.
“I’m a big believer that healthy eating can be practical and can taste good. It’s perfectly possible to lose weight while still eating food you enjoy and that doesn’t take hours to prepare. Smoothies are a great example of this.”
Kim advises to keep sugar intake to a minimum.
She says: “Whether it’s added sugar or naturally occurring in fruits, sugar is sugar and if it’s not used for energy, it can be converted to fat so the body can store it for later use.”
Kim recommends avoiding using fruit juice as your liquid in smoothies.
She explains: “A moderate 200ml of apple juice will provide the equivalent of over five teaspoons of sugar.”
While the sugar is naturally occurring fruit sugar, your body can’t tell the difference. Instead, she advises opting for an unsweetened nut milk or water.
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The nutritionist also advises against using too many high sugar fruits. Fruits provide sugars so she explains how keeping the amount of fruit you use to no more than two portions is best.
Kim explains how adding protein into your smoothies can help you feel fuller for longer.
She says: “Protein fills us up and keeps us satisfied so don’t forget to include it in your smoothie so that you don’t end up feeling hungry well before lunch.”
Protein powder is also important for muscle recovery so may be worth adding to your smoothie if you are drinking one post workout.
Healthy fats are also super important to include into any breakfast and a smoothie is no different.
Kim says: “In the past we were told that eating fat leads to gaining weight, but that’s not the case. Fat is essential for health and numerous studies have shown that moderate amounts of healthy fats can actually support weight loss.
“Try hard a small avocado (which gives a lovely creaminess,) a palmful of seeds (e.g. linseeds, pumpkin seeds or sunflower seeds) or a tablespoon of unsweetened nut butter.”
Kim also advises adding greens to a smoothie as chances are, you wont even be able to taste them but the nutrients will be there.
She says: “Vegetables bulk out your smoothie, providing fibre and making sure your smoothie makes for a satisfying meal.
“No one wants to suffer with hungry pangs when they’re trying to lose weight!”
Therefore courgettes can be the great addition to a smoothie as they are mild in flavour and you will not even notice them.
The nutritionist explains that smoothies can help weight loss but it all depends on what is in them.
She says: “Base smoothies on fruit juice and a lot of high sugar fruits – like bananas, grapes and mango – and this can hinder weight loss.
“On the other hand, if you combine a low sugar fruit like berries with veg, protein and healthy fats, smoothies can make for a filling and satisfying meal that can support healthy weight loss.”
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