Slim Down with These Healthy Smoothies from Instagram
And while this food of the moment can do something its predecessor never could — help you lose weight — there's still plenty of room to go wrong. Instead of striking out on your own with nothing but a blender and growling stomach to guide you, use these healthy weight loss smoothies from fit Instagrammers to inspire your ingredient choices.
All of these combinations make for balanced, energizing sips, and each packs a superfood that either helps whittle your waist or boost your total health. Let their creativity inspire you.
Banana, Spinach, Kiwi, Blueberries and Cacao
Studded with antioxidant-rich cacao nibs, this smoothie has all the makings of a perfect breakfast. Spinach provides satiating fiber and a punch of protein that balances out the glycemic effect of the fruits. And for an even more potent morning elixir, use frozen blueberries instead of fresh. The anthocyanins that give these berries their signature color are found mostly in the skin; the freezing process changes the plant tissue, increasing the bioavailability of these health-boosting compounds.
Peanut Butter, Coconut Milk, Spinach, Wheatgrass, Banana and Strawberries
Many grab-and-go smoothies trip up your weight loss progress because of one major flaw: they're all sugar. This homemade version by Instagrammer Francesca, on the other hand, is a model for weight loss smoothies. She's covered every major nutrient group, combining peanut butter for protein, coconut milk for healthy fats, greens for satiating fiber and a couple fruits for energy-boosting carbs. Use that as your formula, and you can't go wrong.
Oats, Seeds, Nuts, Fruit, Leafy Greens, Coconut Oil, Yogurt and Almond Milk
Before you balk at the idea of adding raw oats to your smoothie, consider this: rolled oats are rich in a type of carb that resists digestions called, naturally, resistant starch. As your body processes it, this starch feeds the good bacteria in your gut and boosts post-meal calorie burn by up to 30 percent. And happy gut bacteria = a flat stomach and less bloating. Now grab those oats and get blending.
Spinach, Kale, Banana, Dates, Almonds, Chia Seeds and Pumpkin Seeds
We love the balance of fruit and veggies that are going to go into this sunny shake. And while they provide plenty of satiating fiber, the kicker here is the addition of chia seeds. Rich in omega-3 fatty acids, these tiny seeds also pack impressive amounts of filling fiber — but there's a trick to unlocking their weight loss powers. Combine the seeds with a bit of your smoothie liquid, like unsweetened nut milk, before adding them to the blender. Letting them expand and create a gel is key to their ability to tame hunger.
Espresso, Cacao, Banana and Dates
If you need your coffee first thing in the morning, try this smoothie version of the classic mocha. A bracing shot of espresso delivers the caffeine you crave while the banana, cacao and dusting of granola give you enough substance to avoid the java-fueled jitters. Look for a cacao or cocoa powder that's non-alkalized next time you're at the store to ensure you're getting the most antioxidants possible.
Protein Smoothie with Quark, Nectarine and Banana
This luscious smoothie gets its velvety texture from the addition of quark, a spoonable cheese that's richer than your standard yogurt. If you're not quite into the signature tang of plain Greek yogurt, quark is the perfect alternative for getting your protein without the bite. Though this smoothie should be indulgent enough as is, you can always freeze the banana before blending for a texture even closer to a milkshake.
Frozen Banana, Raspberries, Kale, Flax Milk, Hemp Protein and Ground Golden Flax
This smoothie hits the balanced breakfast trifecta: healthy fats, protein and carbs. Resist the temptation to blend only fruits, and spike your smoothie with a plant-based protein powder like this healthy Instagrammer has. We suggest looking for blend to ensure you're getting a complete protein, but any plant-based powder will side step the uncomfortable bloating effects of dairy-based versions like whey or casein.
Frozen Strawberries and Bananas with Chia Seeds, Ground Flax, Coconut Cream and Non-dairy Milk
Power up for a long day with this luscious strawberry-banana smoothie. Coconut cream, which you can make at home with full-fat coconut milk if you can't find it in stores, delivers plenty of energizing healthy fats — just be careful with your serving size. The fats in coconut are more readily used by your body as energy than stored as fat, but excess calories are excess calories, so it's better to whip out the measuring spoon.
Frozen Banana, Almond Milk, Peanut Butter and Chia Seeds
Simple and satiating, this combination is one of our favorites. If you're looking to amp up the health benefits even more, freeze your bananas when they're just slightly green; as bananas age, they lose their waist-whittling resistant starch content. If you're simply looking for a fueling sip that only tastes sinful, use whatever bananas you have on hand and add some cocoa powder — you'll get a smoothie that tastes shockingly similar to a peanut butter cup Blizzard.
Black Kale, Spinach, Avocado, Banana, Hemp Protein, Flax Seeds and Almond Milk
Whether you sip it through a straw or eat it with a spoon as a smoothie bowl, this one's sure to satisfy. Though we tend to think of avocado as an ingredient for savory dishes, this fruit does sweet equally well. Rich in healthy fats, plant-based protein and nutrient-packed greens, this recipe will set you up for hours of energy. If your sweet tooth is skeptical, sprinkle the whole thing with diced fresh fruit for a natural hit of sugar.