I remember the first time I ever heard of a smoothie. I was probably about 12 or 13, at Crazy Burger, one of my favorite restaurants in my hometown. They were know for their eclectic menu- everything from vegan options to my favorite, the phyllo-crusted, feta-filled baa-baa lamb burger (Fun fact: they were actually featured on Diners, Drive-ins and Dives on the Food Network. Something big for my sleepy little New England hometown!) but they also happen to have the best breakfast in town (those homefries will make you swoon). And there on the menu amongst fresh-squeezed juices and fair trade coffee options were smoothies. Blended mixtures of fruit juice, fruit and milk. Hmm. So I tried one. And another. And I was pretty darn hooked every time I went.
I don’t remember making them at home until much later- I started learning how to add greens to them back when I was living in Toronto, working at a natural cooking school, and exploring the world of raw food. But despite my nutrition education, it was still lost on me why a mixture of fruit on top of fruit on top of yogurt with a bit of almond milk didn’t keep me full (I mean, I added a handful of spinach!). I was holding onto excess weight in my midsection and experiencing unusual symptoms I just couldn’t put together, which turns out- isn’t all that uncommon when your blood sugar is crazy out of whack.
I learned about blood sugar in school, of course and it was mostly related to avoiding diabetes. Back then I had the notion that all whole food was good for everyone. It wasn’t until I started diving deeper into sports nutrition and body typing [aka, genetics] I learned that we all have very different physiologies- which means we process food differently and there is no one-size-fits-all-diet. And no- just eat real food doesn’t work for everyone, either. But there IS one thing we all have in common. And that is that imbalanced blood sugar is at the root of dozens of chronic diseases as well as zapping our energy and often leading to excess fat storage our bodies really don’t need, no matter what our natural body type.
So those fruit-and-juice smoothies of my youth? They were only contributing to my symptoms (which i later learned were largely related to hormonal imbalance- amplified by blood sugar imbalance) but also put me at risk for chronic diseases like heart disease and dementia– both of which I have a family history of. Scary.
We go into blood sugar in more detail in Clean Lean Mama and my upcoming You are a Supermama mini-course– but here’s the basic jist: ANYthing that turns to sugar in your blood spikes your blood sugar. And anything that comes up must come down. So that energized high you get from a smoothie right away? Usually crashes down into an energy slump and that near-starvation hangry feeling a couple hours later.
The solution? Pairing your (small amount of) fruit with PROTEIN, HEALTHY FATS, and VEGGIES (fiber). Fiber slows the digestion of the carbohydrates, keeping us full, while protein and healthy fats regulate blood sugar and turn off hunger hormones so we avoid that huge crash and burn. Meaning we stay fuller, longer- and a smoothie goes from a blood sugar disaster to a super nutrient-rich, EASY meal for moms (in fact, I call it the BEST meal for busy moms).
This simple change- swapping out the excess fruit for fat (1970’s nutrition book authors are cringing, right now), adding in veggies for nutrients and fiber and a ton of protein for satiety changed my entire nutrition. I know it seems dramatic- but hear me out. Having it for breakfast meant I was no longer starving at noon and I could go until 1 or 2 before even feeling hungry. I avoid blood sugar crashes and my PCOS symptoms are at bay. Other meals aside, THIS was the change that made it all happen. And I call it the Healthy Mama Super Smoothie.
The Healthy Mama Super Smoothie turns your average breakfast into super mama fuel for energy, satiety and balance to start your day. It’s one simple five-ingredient formula (no expensive meal replacement shakes or exotic superfoods required) to change your nutrition, just like it did mine. Don’t believe me? Try it and let me know what you think!
Of course, there’s more than just drinking a super smoothie to turn you into a super mama and change your entire healthy mama life- but it’s a good start!
Do you want to be a Super Mama? I KNOW you are. Join us for You ARE a Supermama, a free mini course to simplify nutrition and boost energy, starting April 2. Click the link below to enter your name and email and JOIN US!