Nothing is better than a cool and refreshing smoothie on a warm day. Smoothies are the ultimate nutritious meal because they are easy to make, can be taken on the go, and can include all of your fruits and veggies for the day. They are perfect for breakfast, as a snack, a pre-workout or recovery shake, or even for dessert! One country that knows how to make a perfect smoothie is Brazil. This South American nation has mouth watering, tropical fruits that are perfect for a vitamin-rich smoothie.
Below are 4 tips that we can take from Brazil on how to make a perfect smoothie for our health as well as our taste buds:
1) Add Fruit
Brazilians love to add papayas, guavas, mangos, acái, and bananas in smoothies for a huge dose of energy. Adding fruit to a morning smoothie is one of the best ways to start your day. Fruit provides energy through its naturally occurring sugars, but also contains many vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants. If you struggle with eating enough fruit during the day, smoothies are a great way to get the recommended daily amount of 1.5 to 2 cups of fruit per day. Start your day off right with a smoothie filled with Brazilian fruits!
2) Add Spinach
Okay, now this ingredient may sound gross for a smoothie. But adding a handful or 2 of fresh spinach to your fruit smoothie is actually tasteless! As long as you have at least 1 cup of fruit in your smoothie, you won’t be able to taste the added nutrients and fiber of the spinach. Spinach is a sneaky way to add iron and calcium to your diet through a plant-based source. Don’t be scared to try adding spinach and other vegetables like kale, cucumber, or even zucchini to your smoothie!
3) Have a Great Liquid
A popular liquid of choice in Brazil is “Agua de Coco” or coconut water! It is not only refreshing and beats the tropical heat, but it also keeps the body hydrated through natural sugars, minerals, and electrolytes. Brazilians use real coconuts and get the liquid by drilling a small hole through the shell. Coconut water is also sold bottled in grocery stores, just make sure to check the labels for un-wanted, added sugars! For a creamier smoothie, using nut and coconut milks are also a great option.
4) Fill Up on Fat
This last tip is one of the most important, yet most forgotten step when making smoothies. Adding a healthy source of fat to your smoothie will help prevent a sugar crash in an all fruit and vegetable smoothie. We need fat to make a smoothie more balanced as well as to add a fullness and satisfaction factor. A great and healthy fat that Brazilians love is the avocado. Adding 1/4 of an avocado to your smoothie will give anti-inflammatory benefits and make your smoothie extra smooth and creamy. Other healthy fats you can try is chia seeds, nut butters, coconut yogurt, or flax oil. Now get blending!