Don't we all love a tall glass of a delicious smoothie? But do we know that they have been around since forever in various forms like the Indian lassi, Middle-eastern fruit sherbets, etc.? They became popular around the 1930s when the blenders and refrigerators were invented in America. This made smoothies, known as fruit slush at that time, simple. From the 1940s onwards, smoothie recipes have undergone a sea change. From being made with seasonal fruits and vegetables, people began to make smoothie recipes with blended frozen fruits. Then people began to use milk and yoghurt as their smoothie base. With more people becoming health conscious, healthy smoothies were created with the use of probiotic milk, yoghurt, and protein & vitamin powders, and advocated as a drink that is so nutritious that it can replace a meal. This also gave way to green smoothies that included green leafy vegetables blended with fruits and water. Varieties of healthy shakes and smoothies are now easily available at almost every coffee shop.
What are the benefits of smoothies?
Healthy smoothies are often termed as a superfood because of their power-packed nutritional content that helps us in remaining active and prevents several deficiencies and disorders. Here are some of the most important benefits of adding smoothies to your everyday diet:
- They pack up essential nutrients that you might be missing in your meals. For example, green smoothie recipes are an excellent way to make up for the missing greens in your diet that add fibres, vitamins, minerals, antioxidants, etc.
- Smoothie recipes made with blueberries, green veggies, turmeric, and cherries help fight off neurological decline, dementia, memory problems, Alzheimer's, etc. They also contain antioxidants that help in preventing cancer.
- Healthy smoothie recipes made with gut-friendly probiotic yoghurt and flaxseed are great for improving digestive health and preventing problems like bloat, constipation, flatulence, etc.
- Healthy smoothie recipes made with water and fruit juices are a great source of nutrition for people who are lactose intolerant.
- Smoothie recipes made with cinnamon and apple cider vinegar are great to reduce cravings, binge eating and help in losing weight.
- Strawberry and banana-based smoothie recipes are loaded with potassium that helps in neutralising free radicals that help in relaxing your blood vessels and lowering blood pressure.
- Healthy smoothie recipes fortified with protein powders are great for strengthening muscles and tissues and keeping your skin and hair healthy.
- Smoothies are a great way, and frankly a more interesting way, to keep hydrated especially during summers.
- Smoothie recipes made with fresh fruits and vegetables provide you with beta-carotene, zinc, iron, selenium, etc. that are important for boosting your immunity.
- Smoothies packed with zinc and magnesium are great for fighting sleep disorders and reduce stress, anxiety, and mood disorders
- Smoothie recipes made with ingredients like garlic, turmeric, papaya, etc. are great for detoxifying the body of accumulated toxins in the body tissues.
How to make a smoothie healthy?
It is very important to add the right ingredients to your smoothie recipes to avoid letting them become sugar bombs. Here are some tips on how to make smoothies work for you:
- Be it natural sweeteners like honey, coconut sugar, or flavoured yoghurts, you need to keep a check on how much sugar you are adding. This helps in avoiding extra calories that you might be unknowingly consuming.
- Go easy on the butter like that of almond, peanut, etc. to keep the calories in check.
- Instead of fruit juice, use fresh fruits to get your dose of fibre.
- Add a handful of green veggies to your smoothie to make them more nutritious.
Which are some of the best smoothie recipes to brighten up your day?
1. Apple and dry fruit smoothie:
This is one of those delicious and easy smoothie recipes that are packed with fibre and proteins.
- Soak raisins in hot water and cashew nuts & dates in milk.
- Blend chopped apples, bananas, soaked nuts, and jaggery with slim milk.
- Serve chilled garnished with slivers of almonds.
2. Fruit blend smoothie:
One of the healthiest breakfast smoothie recipes, this is super-delicious too! What's more, its fresh and low-calorie ingredients make it a great weight loss smoothie recipe.
- Combine frozen cherries, raspberries, mango, and blueberries with a little water and vanilla-flavoured Greek yoghurt in the blender to smoothen.
- Garnish with mint sprigs and serve chilled with fresh fruit pieces.
3. Banana dates smoothie:
One of the most delicious smoothie recipes, this is quite an energy booster and packed with essential vitamins and minerals.
- Chop bananas and soak pitted dates in slim milk for 30 minutes.
- Add banana, dates, and half of the chilled slim milk in a blender.
- Blend till you get a smooth paste-like mixture.
- Add the remaining milk and blend again.
- Serve chilled garnished with slivers of dates.
4. Avocado and spinach smoothie:
One of the best green smoothie recipes, this is delicious and great as a mid-meal snack. It also serves as a healthy smoothie for weight loss by filling you up with fibre.
- Blend protein powder, fresh spinach, sliced avocado, unsweetened cashew or almond milk, and ground flaxseed till you get a smooth consistency.
- Serve chilled with slices of fresh fruit.
5. Pumpkin shake:
This is one of those healthy shakes that lets you get a healthy dose of vitamin A.
- Combine pumpkin puree, unsweetened vanilla or almond milk, banana pieces, and a pinch of cinnamon in a blender.
- Mix till you get a smooth consistency.
- Serve chilled topped with a bit of honey.
6. Green smoothie:
One of the best weight loss smoothie recipes, this is packed with the goodness of amino acids, antioxidants, vitamins, and minerals.
- Blend spinach leaves with a little water till all the chunks are gone.
- Add pieces of mango, pineapple, and bananas till you get a smooth consistency.
- Serve chilled.
7. Mango smoothie bowl:
This healthy and delicious fruit smoothie recipe will whisk you to the sunny tropics.
- Blend mango, frozen banana, coconut milk, almond milk, and honey till you get a creamy mixture.
- Serve topped with chopped mangoes, coconut powder, almond slivers, and chia seeds.