How to Build a Smoothie Based on Your Goals
Jan 24, 2022
Smoothies are not only quick and easy to prepare, but they’re also portable for convenient, on-the-go meals and snacks. Plus, they make a tasty way to reach your daily fruits and vegetable needs. We love a good smoothie, but it’s important to know that not all blends are created equal.
In order to make these liquid snacks work for your personal health and fitness goals, you may need to switch up the ingredients you throw into the blender.
Here are some ideas of what that might look like depending on if you want to lose weight, maintain your weight, or gain weight:
Goal: Weight Loss
- Fruit: Choose ½ to 1 cup of your favorite fruit or mix 2 fruits together such as 1/2 banana + 1/2 cup strawberries. Kiwi, raspberries, blueberries, and pineapple are also great fruits to include. The fiber in fruit keeps you full for longer and can help aid in weight loss.
- Veggies: Add in as many veggies as you want depending on your taste preference! Veggies help to boost your nutrition without adding unnecessary calories. Some veggies that are great in smoothies include kale, spinach, cucumber, and celery.
- Liquid: Try to avoid/limit juice, this will add extra calories and unwanted added sugar. Choose from plant-based unsweetened nut milks like unsweetened almond milk fortified with calcium and vitamin D, fat-free or low-fat milk, yogurt, water, or coconut water.
- Mix-Ins: Add in a scoop of your favorite protein powder while being mindful of the amount of calories and added sugar that it contains. You can even add in a tablespoon of ground flaxseeds or chia seeds to add some more healthy fats, fiber and protein!
Goal: Weight Maintenance
The ingredients of a weight maintenance smoothie should fall somewhere in between what you would include in a weight loss and weight gain smoothie. Think of it as a give or take. If you know you want to add a higher calorie fruit such as dates, maybe choose a lower calorie liquid such as almond milk rather than fruit juice.
Goal: Weight Gain
- Fruit: Choose 1 cup of your favorite fruit. Some fruits that are higher in calories than others include avocados, dates, figs, bananas, and dried fruit.
- Veggies: Vegetables are naturally low in calories so it doesn’t matter which ones you choose just be sure to include some to increase your nutrient intake!
- Liquid: Don’t fear juice while making a weight gain smoothie, this will add the extra calories that you’re looking for! Other high-calorie liquid/dairy options include whole milk, 2% milk, half and half, soy milk (or any of the highest calorie plant-based milks that you can find), ice cream, and sherbet.
- Mix-Ins: Nut butter is your best friend when it comes to making a weight-gain smoothie because only 2 tablespoons contain 180 calories. Feel free to add in as much almond butter or peanut butter as you want! Other great weight-gain add-ins include flaxseeds, chia seeds, nuts, high-calorie protein powder, honey, or coconut cream.
Bottom Line: The weight-loss smoothie focuses on ingredients that are nutritionally dense, high in fiber and water content, and low in calories. However, the weight-gain smoothie has ingredients that are high in protein, carbs, and healthy natural fats that are higher in calories. The weight maintenance smoothie just falls somewhere in between the weight gain and weight loss smoothie for a perfect balance!