Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Leah Lunch: Smoothie Day!

Many studies have shown that eating protein at breakfast can help you feel less hungry throughout the day.

It is important to know that just because a smoothie contains seemingly healthy ingredients, they can still be up to 300 calories or more depending on what you add and how much you drink.

Smoothies from restaurants can be deceptively high in calories.

Chocolate, peanut butter, and banana smoothie: Makes 1 large serving
  • 1 packet of "No sugar added" hot chocolate powder
  • OR substitute the hot chocolate for chocolate protein powder
  • 1 banana, Peeled then frozen
  • 1/2-1C Skim milk plus
  • Optional- 2 tablespoons of "P2" Powdered peanut butter

Directions: Add the frozen bananas and the milk to a blender. Blend until smooth. Use a spoon to stir in the hot chocolate powder and the powdered peanut butter. Blend again until combined.

Nutrition Facts:  ~230 calories without powdered peanut butter and protein powder.

About the Ingredients:
  • "No sugar added" hot chocolate- At 50 calories per serving, this is half the calories of regular hot chocolate mix.
    • I find that the "diet" hot chocolate mix, at only 25 calories per serving, does not taste as good and is less satisfying when you are craving chocolate. 
  •  "P2" powdered peanut butter- At only 45 calories per serving (2 Tablespoons), it has less than 1/4th of the calories as regular peanut butter which contains 200 calories per serving (2 Tablespoons).
    • P2 contains 5g of protein, which is the same amount of protein in regular peanut butter
    • It is lower in calories because it doesn't contain all the fat that regular peanut butter has.
    • Just add water to the powder and it becomes spreadable
      • P2 can be found in the health food section at HyVee (this is the ONLY place to get it).
      • It costs $5.00 for a 14 serving bottle
      • It comes in 2 flavors: original and chocolate
  • Skim milk plus- At only 80 calories, it is the same as skim milk but has the consistency of 2% milk.
    • This is found at Gerbes.
    • It has an orange cap and an orange label (be careful not to pick up the 1% milk which has a yellow cap).

Strawberry-banana orange juice smoothie: Makes 3 servings

  • 1 16-ounce bag of frozen strawberries, NO SUGAR ADDED!
  • 1 banana, peeled then frozen
  • 1-2 cups Orange Juice, "Light/ no sugar added"
  • Optional- vanilla protein powder
  • Optional- Fat free vanilla yogurt. (Dannon fit and active has the least amount of added sugar)

Directions: Add the above at once. Add additional orange juice if needed.

Nutrition Facts: ~130-150 calories without optional ingredients

About the ingredients:
  • "Light/ no sugar added" orange juice- At 50 calories per cup, this orange juice is half as many calories as regular orange juice but still tastes great.

A word about protein powders:
To make the above smoothies into a breakfast meal, add a scoop of protein powder. Not all protein powders are created equal.
Protein powders are commonly known for coming in vanilla and chocolate flavors but there are also flavorless options.
When looking for a protein powder make sure it fits the following criteria:
  • Less than 150 calories per serving or scoop
  • Less than 5 grams of fat per serving
  • Less than 5 grams of sugar per serving
  • At least 20 grams pf protein per serving
  • MUST be made from whey protein isolates because whey has a complete source of protein.
    •  A complete protein is one that provides the essential (meaning must come from foods) amino acids.
Where to buy protein powders:
  • Complete Nutrition in the Columbia mall has a good selection and they will even let you taste them.
  • GNC in the Columbia mall
  • Some grocery stores and Walmart have protein powders
    • Wherever you go, you must check for the above criteria

In summary:

When adding protein powders to your smoothie you are making them a meal because you are adding at least 130 calories (good calories are still calories).

When making as a dessert I strongly suggest leaving out the protein powders.

You can use what ever ingredients you want in these smoothies, you do not have to add all of the ones i have suggested.

If you try these smoothies, let me know what you think! 

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