Sunday, January 15, 2012

4 Tips to Making Your Own Protein Shakes and Smoothies

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You have probably read why you should make your own meal replacements and smoothies and how they help you lose weight.  They are convenient, full of nutrition, and an easy way to count calories.  Making your own helps you avoid added fats, sugars, and chemical additives. 

Using your own blender instead of buying them prepackaged can save you money and cut down on waste.

Here are some tips to help you get started.

1.  Make your smoothies and shakes the night before or early in the morning and store them in glass mason jars or plastic freezer jars.  By preparing them the night ahead, you save yourself time and you are more likely to drink them instead of grabbing fast food or other junk.
The screw top lids keep them from leaking if the jar gets tipped.

2.  Use an insulated lunchbag and a freezer pack to keep your smoothies and shakes cold when you are going to be away from home.  The soft bag also protects the glass jar and keeps your smoothie or shake cold. 

3.  Add 1-2 cups of loosely packed fresh spinach to your shake or smoothie.  Very low in calories, spinach provides niacin and zinc, and a very good source of dietary fiber, protein, vitamin A, vitamin C, vitamin E, vitamin K, thiamin, riboflavin, vitamin B6, folate, calcium, iron, magnesium, phosphorus, potassium, copper and manganese.
The taste of the spinach is so mild, you will probably not even be able to tell it is there.

4.  For extra fiber, mix a tablespoon of ground flaxseed into your shake or smoothie.  Flaxseed is high in fiber, omega-3 fatty acids and phytochemicals called lignans.  It may reduce total blood cholesterol and reduce your chances of developing heart disease.

Do you have any tips to share about shakes or smoothies? 

Check out the Mixed Berry Protein Shake I posted earlier today! 
What you will find here this week:
  • Monday-Oatmeal Cookie Protein Shake. 
  • Tuesday-Coconut Pineapple Smoothie
  • What Matthew Ate Wednesday-See what my vegetarian four year-old is eating.  Also, I will post a recipe for Chocolate Cherry Protein Shake.
  • Thursday-Peanut Butter Cup Protein Shake
  • Friday-Peach Raspberry Smoothie.
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