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Cauliflower, Zucchini, and Blueberry Smoothie + Wholistic Belly's Healthier Smoothie Rules


I know the late fall / early wintertime doesn’t exactly seem like the greatest time to be drinking a smoothie, but for me to keep the holiday bloat down and give my stomach a bit of a break from digesting all the delicious, rich food and drink that’s basically everywhere every single day, a smoothie once every few mornings helps to do just that. It’s a bit easier for me living in Hermosa Beach in Los Angeles to have a smoothie in the colder months, especially when it was in the 80’s this past weekend, and I bet my tune would be a little different if I were still living in Upstate New York and Vermont, but such is life!


A smoothie seems to be the healthier option for some people for breakfast, but I want to make one thing clear: not all smoothies are created equal. Have you ever looked at the back of an Odwalla smoothie in the grocery store? Or considered looking at how much sugar is actually in a Jamba Juice smoothie? You’re jaw would probably drop to the floor. I mean, it’s a smoothie, so it’s healthy, right?


Wrong! Again, repeat after me, “not all smoothies are created equal.”


Smoothies, like juices, can become sugary and health depleting — and quickly. Here are a few suggestions and things to watch out for when either purchasing or making your own smoothie at home:
  1. Take a look at the base. Places like Jamba Juice use apple juice. The amount of sugar in straight up apple juice is astounding and no one should be having that much sugar without the fiber from that apple in one sitting. I suggest using either water, unsweetened nut or seed milk, or unflavored coconut water.

  2. Check how many fruits are in there. Fruits are NOT bad for you, in fact, they can be a great source of vitamins and fiber and are naturally sweet, but too many can add up in not only the sugar department, but the bloat department. I suggest no more than one kind of fruit and no more than one serving.

  3. Speaking of fruits, if you are buying a store bought smoothie, check the ingredient list to make sure it’s the whole fruit and not the fruit juice or from concentrate. Read: sugar, sugar, sugar.

  4. Especially if you already have fruit in your smoothie, don’t add sweaters like honey, agave, or maple syrup. There’s no need for that. This isn’t a milk shake or a dessert. If you really need something sweet to cut it, add a date or two, but no more than that. Dates are extremely sugary!

  5. Add as many greens, leafy greens, and vegetables as you want. For real. Go crazy! Smoothies can be a great place to add those extra vegetables you may be having a hard time getting elsewhere throughout your day.

  6. To keep the glycemic load lower and your appetite satiated for a few hours, add a protein and a fat. The protein will keep you feeling full and the fat will keep you feeling satiated and help to curb any further sugar cravings. Try and get your protein intake from your smoothie between 20 - 30g, especially if using it as a meal replacement in the morning. This should keep you satiated until past lunch time.

Here I added a scoop of Vega Vanilla Protein powder, which is a pea base. I rotate my protein powders when I feel my stomach having a harder time digesting them and am actually currently using Vital Proteins Collagen Peptides, but at the time of filming I was using Vega. I personally find I can tolerate pea protein for a few weeks, and then start to feel weird and take it out for a few weeks before adding it back in. I tend to stay far away from anything Whey or Soy based for hormone balancing reasons. Pea, seed, nut, hemp, or a combo usually works for me. If you’re not into using protein powders, you can always use nuts like almonds, walnuts, or cashews and seeds like chia, sunflower, or pumpkin.


As far as fats go you could use a scoop of nut or seed butter like Almond or Sunflower, half an avocado, or a tablespoon of coconut oil or butter.


Anyways, hopefully you have a little bit of a better list of what to look for and what to avoid when purchasing or making a smoothie. An example of that kind of smoothie which I make in my own kitchen is below. Let me know how you like it!


CAULIFLOWER, ZUCCHINI, BLUEBERRY SMOOTHIE Cook time: 5 minutes | Yields: 1 serving
  • 1.5 Cups Hemp Milk, preferably Homemade (or any nut or seed milk)

  • 1/2 Cup Frozen Blueberries

  • 1/2 Cup Frozen Zucchini

  • 1/2 Cup Cauliflower, steamed & frozen

  • 1 Scoop Vanilla Vega Protein

  • 1 Tbls Almond Butter

Directions:

  1. In prep: Zucchini: wash, chop into 1” chunks, freeze Blueberries: wash and freeze, or purchase from the freezer section of your grocery store (opt for organic if possible) Cauliflower: wash and chop head into little florets. Steam until a fork easily cuts through. Set aside to cool. Once cool, freeze. Homemade Hemp Milk: See Wholistic Belly’s recipe for Homemade Hemp milk here. Use the same ratio for just about any seed or nut milk.

  2. In a vitamin, combine all ingredients. Blend until smooth.

  3. Serve and enjoy!

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