Sweet, cold, refreshing and boasting with health benefits, or so I always thought. Jamba Juice, Smoothie King and Tropical Smoothie Cafe are some of the big franchises but even Starbucks, Duncan Donuts and McDonalds are trying to capture the millennials' love for the smoothie. The smoothie has marketed itself as fruits and veggies which of course must be good for you. It is perceived to be a quick alternative to a salad. Don't have time for lunch, "oh I will just grab a smoothie." An easy drink to get anytime of day to replace a meal or even compliment your meal.
Unfortunately, we love sweet, smooth and HUGE smoothies making it nutritionally more similar to a soda pop. We get rid of the fiber and dump apple juice on top. Maybe you add kale, which is nice but even adding kale cannot eliminate the carbohydrates overflowing from your styrofoam cup! A 340 calorie smoothie contains around 85 grams of carbohydrate. That is equal to 1.5 packages of skittles! Now I love a good smoothie. I have great memories of getting smoothies after school with my mom. However, this is a food that marketing has been extremely effective,and it has developed a fake reputation as I wrote about 6 years ago! I am sorry if this information makes you feel let down. Hopefully this information will help you get that much closer to your health goals because you now know what you are eating. It is important to know the nutrition of your food so that you can enjoy it in moderation.
Next time you order a smoothie, consider adding protein and a healthy fat like flax seed or avocado. Also order the smallest size available and then share it with someone. I am a firm believer in enjoying all food in moderation, but the American way is go big or go home. If you cannot compromise then you may need to just go home on this one!
Nutrition from the dietitian
Blog of Abrea Nutrition.