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Are Smoothies Really That Healthy?

By Paul Rothbart

Smoothies have gained quite a reputation. The magical meal on the go. Save time, lose weight, be healthy. They are available at juice, premade in supermarkets, and there are a number of companies manufacturing blenders designed just for smoothies, so you can make your own. But are they really that healthy? The answer, like with many things, is that you get out of a smoothie what you put into it. For the record, almost anything can be put into a smoothie. They do require some kind of liquid and then many combinations of ingredients can be blended in. There are two main types: fruit and green. Here is some information on healthy smoothies. 

Fruit Smoothies

A healthy smoothie base is usually a non-dairy milk, yogurt, or kefir. Since most fruits are very nutritious, fruit smoothies can be too. They contain all the vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants found in the fruits they are made from. Making them yourself is your best bet. Premade smoothies from a store may be high in fat, sugars, and may use artificial sweeteners. This can negate the health benefits of the fruit. It's best to check labels when buying the premade variety. 

Green Smoothies

As the name implies, these smoothies are made with green leafy vegetables, one of the healthiest foods there is. Green smoothies very often contain kale, Swiss chard, or spinach. Sometimes more than one. This loads them up with fiber, Vitamins A, C, and K as well as healthy phytochemicals. They are a very good way to get the required daily allowance of vegetables. Adding greens to a fruit smoothie can counter the high amount of fruit sugars. 

Weight Loss

Smoothies are often touted as diet food and a great way to lose weight. The truth is that smoothies, on their own, will not magically take off pounds. Weight loss comes about by adopting a healthy lifestyle. Exercise along with a healthy diet that includes a variety of nutritious foods is what experts recommend. Smoothies can certainly be a part of a healthy diet, but other foods should always be included. A smoothie is great for a quick breakfast or when you don't have time for a meal.

Smoothies are in. They are credited with all kinds of health benefits and some people feel they can be replacements for meals. That is a stretch, but a smoothie made with healthy ingredients will have benefits. Just remember to make them part of your diet and not the main attraction.

To learn more about your health, wellness and fitness, see your local chiropractor at The Joint Chiropractic in El Cajon, Calif. 

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