Most of us know that breakfast isn’t the “most important meal of the day,” but that doesn’t mean it isn’t important (via The New York Times). There’s nothing wrong with intermittent fasting, but if you do eat breakfast, it’s a great opportunity to get your fruits and vegetables in, which is why vegetable smoothies are a great choice for the first meal of the day.
Unlike fruit smoothies, which can contain an abundance of sugar, green smoothies packed with vegetables like spinach or kale offer a tasty way to get your greens in without relying on salads (via Dave and Tracy). Plus, smoothies are perfect if you don’t have a big appetite first thing, since you can sip them slowly throughout the morning.
Finally, if you’re serious about your health goals, you already know that sustainability is the key to seeing long-term effects. So, to get the most benefits out of vegetable smoothies, the secret is making them quick, easy, and delicious and that starts with a recipe.
How to build the perfect green smoothie
The first two ingredients your green smoothie needs are the greens (of course) and a liquid (good options include water or a non-dairy milk for a creamier smoothie) (via WebMD). You can also include other vegetables like carrots, beets, and cucumbers for even more nutrients. From there, fruits like apples, pineapple, and berries will help mask the flavor of the vegetables and add sweetness; meanwhile bananas, nut butters, and even yogurt can help with richness and creaminess.
But, if you find your smoothie is still too bitter, a little honey or a few dates will kick the natural sweetness up a notch. Further, get creative and try adding herbs, spices, cocoa powder, matcha, chia seeds, or even açaí powder for flavor and even more superfood benefits (via TIME).
Once you find a green smoothie recipe or two that you really like, you can meal-prep a large batch and keep them in the freezer in mason jars or plastic bags for quick weekday breakfasts (via Wholefully). Then, just sit back and enjoy the benefits of a daily vegetable smoothie first thing, like increased hydration, improved digestion, and even clearer skin! (via HuffPost).
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