5 Delicious Ways To Make Bland, Healthy Smoothies Taste More Like Milkshakes

By Laura Kleist | 25 November 2019 1183 views
add protein to smoothies

These 5 Tips Give You Smooth, Creamy, Protein-Packed Smoothies

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If you’re on a mission to lose weight and eat healthier, smoothies are a great way to start your day. Unfortunately, however, most smoothies leave you feeling ravenous long before lunchtime rolls around.

And what usually happens when hunger strikes before mealtime rolls around? 

Yep. You reach for the snacks. And snacks don’t help your weight loss efforts.

So how can you give your smoothies more staying power to hold you over until your next meal?

Add more protein.

Yep! It might sound too good to be true, but believe it—protein is the king of weight loss nutrients. If you’re not eating enough of it now, try incorporating more.

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You’ll be pleasantly surprised to find your hunger pangs vanish and your jeans start getting looser. Win-win!  

Adding a serving of protein to your smoothie will not only keep you fuller longer, but it will also help stabilize your blood sugar, keeping cravings at bay. Combine that protein with some fiber-rich carbohydrates and a serving of healthy fat… and you have a complete meal that will work wonders to boost your weight loss efforts.

Why Is Eating Enough Protein Important?

When you’re dieting, you’re probably going to feel hungry at one time or another. But eating enough protein can help keep those hunger pangs at bay.

Of all three macronutrients—protein, carbohydrates, and fat—protein is the most filling.

Because protein digestion requires more time than the breakdown of other nutrients, it stays in your digestive tract longer… keeping you full for hours. And the more full you feel, the less likely you are to reach for unhealthy, calorie-packed foods.

Plus, protein helps maintain your muscle tissue, which is crucial for weight loss.

Did you know that muscle tissue accounts for approximately 40% of your body weight? And what is muscle made of? 

You guessed it: protein.

Since muscle tissue is more metabolically active than fat—meaning it burns calories even when you’re sitting on the couch—maintaining your existing muscle mass is critical. And the best thing you can do to maintain your muscle tissue is to feed it protein.

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Beyond muscle tissue, protein forms the building blocks of your entire body. That’s right—every single cell within you contains protein. It really is that important for the health of your entire system. 

On a very basic level, your body simply doesn’t function as well as it should when you don’t eat enough protein. Your hair and nails become brittle, you might feel weak or fatigued, and worst of all, you gain unnecessary weight.

How Does Eating Protein Help Speed Up Fat Loss?

So we know that protein takes a long time to digest, which means it keeps you full for hours. That alone can speed up your weight loss.

But scientifically, what is it about protein that boosts your fat loss efforts?

Protein doesn’t just stay in your digestive tract for hours; it literally tells your brain you’ve had enough to eat. Because protein reduces your levels of the hunger hormone, ghrelin, it helps reduce your calorie intake. 

This natural reduction in your daily calories will help keep you in a caloric deficit. And since you must eat fewer calories than you burn if you want to lose weight, including more protein in your diet can help you achieve that.

5 Delicious Ways To Add More Protein To Your Smoothies

Now that you understand how important protein is for your weight loss journey, it’s important that you make an effort to include it in every meal. When you do, you’ll find that your energy levels remain constant and your cravings for unhealthy foods decrease. 

Perhaps most importantly, you’ll also find that the number on the scale continues its downward trajectory.

If you’re a fan of your morning smoothies… but you just can’t figure out how to pack more protein into your breakfast… you’re in luck!

Check out these 5 easy ways you can boost the protein content in your smoothies by adding healthy ingredients you might already have around the house:

1) Add High-Protein Yogurt

Yogurt adds more to your smoothie than just a hefty dose of protein.

That’s because it also contains a heaping helping of gut-healthy probiotics. And since healthy gut bacteria also promote weight loss and improved fullness, you can’t do much better than that.

One serving of high-protein yogurt typically contains somewhere in the ballpark of 18 to 22 grams of protein—enough to keep you full for hours. Plus, it gives your smoothie a thick, creamy consistency that’s sure to quell any craving for sweets.

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Look for yogurts that are low in sugar and high in protein since added sugars will absolutely thwart your weight loss efforts. Products like Greek yogurt, Bulgarian yogurt, Iceland skyr, and kefir are all great choices.

Keep in mind that healthy yogurt and kefir options generally contain five ingredients or less. Make sure you read those ingredient labels carefully!

2) Add A Scoop Of Nut Or Seed Butter 

One serving of nut or seed butter typically contains about six to eight grams of protein, depending on the product you select. Nuts and seeds also contain substantial fiber. This helps improve digestion and feeds your all-important, weight-loss inducing gut bacteria.

Almond and peanut butter work wonders for adding flavor to any smoothie. But if you’re not a fan, you can also try milder-tasting butters like sunflower, hemp, or chia seed.

Just don’t get carried away with this one, because nut and seed butters also contain substantial fat. If you add too much, you could end up with a super calorie-dense meal. That’s not exactly what you’re going for when your goal is weight loss!

3) Toss In Some Nuts Or Seeds

If you don’t have nut or seed butter on hand, you can simply add a serving of whole nuts or seeds to your smoothie. Since most whole nuts and seeds still contain their outer skin, you typically get a bit more fiber and nutrients than you would by adding ground nut or seed butters.

Hulled hemp seeds are a great option here because they’re relatively soft and can be broken down by almost any blender on the market. Plus, hemp seeds also contain a complete amino acid profile—not something found in every nut or seed.

Typically though, you’ll need a high-powered blender to achieve a creamy smoothie consistency if you take this route.  

4) Add A Scoop Of Protein Powder

Protein powder will give you the most protein bang for your buck. So, if you’re looking for a quick and easy, low-fat source of protein, this is it.

Keep in mind, however, that protein powders are not regulated by the FDA. This means you’ll need to be careful about the products you choose.

Ideally, you should opt for protein powders that undergo third-party testing. And if you can, try to make sure you only select organic products. Third-party testing and organic certification help ensure products are high quality and contain accurate nutrition information.

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When it comes to protein powders, the options are almost endless. You can choose from:

  • Milk-based proteins such as whey and casein
  • Grain-based proteins such as rice and oat
  • Veggie-based proteins like pea and hemp
  • Animal-based proteins such as beef and egg
  • Protein blends that combine different sources of protein 

Just one scoop of protein powder typically contains a whopping 20 to 25 grams of protein, which will help keep you satiated for hours. Because you have several options to choose from, if a particular protein source doesn’t agree with your digestive system, you can always try another. 

Many people find dairy-based proteins difficult to digest but have no trouble with plant-based powders. If you’re not sure what works for you, try samples of several different protein powders until you find one that suits your body.

5) Add A Scoop Of Collagen Peptides

Collagen peptides have recently enjoyed a surge in popularity due to their impressive list of health benefits. They’re also a great source of low-fat, easy-to-digest protein. 

Just one serving of grass-fed bovine or marine collagen will add a whopping 15 to 20 grams of protein to your smoothie.

Perhaps the greatest thing about collagen protein? It’s virtually tasteless.

You won’t get that chalky mouth-feel that some protein powders deliver. And because it dissolves almost instantly, your smoothie won’t be grainy, either.

Because collagen is the primary protein found in the human body, adding this supplement to your smoothies can truly boost your well-being. Not only will collagen help keep you full, but it can also improve the health of your entire body.

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Beyond satiety, collagen can improve your skin health, nail strength, digestive health, and even the appearance of your hair. It’s been hailed as one of the newest and most effective anti-aging supplements on the market.

A supplement that promotes weight loss and anti-aging?! Sounds like a win all around!

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Adding protein-rich foods to your smoothies can truly enhance your health and weight loss efforts. Go ahead and mix it up—add different ingredients to your smoothies each day until you find the foods that work best for you! 

Losing weight and improving your health are all about maintaining a diet you enjoy. When you take the time to discover foods you truly love, you can maintain your weight loss—and your new lifestyle—for the rest of your life!

RECIPE: This Protein-Packed “Berry Breeze” Smoothie Helps Your Body Melt Off The Pounds…

The science is absolutely settled on this… eating more protein is an easy and effective way to lose weight!

And while the 5 tips I showed you above will help you add protein to smoothies you already make… 

I’d like to share one of my absolute favorite “weight loss” smoothies of all time, because it’s not only packed with healthy protein… but it personally helped me lose my post-Thanksgiving pudge last year!

(I just can’t say no to rich, buttery mashed potatoes… and don’t even get me started on pecan pie. *drool*)

Plus, it tastes amazing, so you won’t even feel like you’re having something “healthy.”

And the best part is, it’s only 5 ingredients (plus ice for texture and temperature)… and I’d bet you probably have at LEAST one in your fridge already:

Click here for the recipe! 

P.S. If you aren’t a fan of berries… check out these other 2 delicious protein-packed smoothie recipes that are proven to peel off the pounds and help you burn fat faster.