Updated: May 27, 2020
Sugar is a sneaky little guy. Especially when it comes to breakfast. Sugar in excess can cause weight gain, hormonal imbalances, acne, and anxiety. Having a morning smoothie is one of the easiest ways you can get tons of body loving nutrients that serve your health and wellness goals, but it's also a sneaky vehicle for sugar too. Today I'm sharing 4 ways you can reduce the sugar content of your smoothie to help tap into fat burning mechanisms, reduce breakouts, and stabilize your mood!
Check your base
The liquid base of your smoothie is a great place to start when cutting sugar. Many smoothie places use fruit juice like orange, apple, or pineapple. Most fruit juices come in at about 30-35g of sugar per 12 oz. serving, which doesn't make it a great option for your smoothie base. Opt for an unsweetened dairy-free milk like almond, coconut, cashew, or hemp. You can also use coconut water, although this contains more sugar than unsweetened-dairy free milk, but not as much as fruit juice.
Use low sugar fruits
Not all fruits are created equal. Some have much lower fiber while containing higher sugar contents that will spike your blood glucose levels and throw you out of fat burning mode. Dates contain about 16g of sugar per ONE piece. On the other hand, 1/2 medium sized banana or 1/2 cup blueberries contains about 7g. Use 1-2 of these lower sugar fruits as an alternative to higher sugar fruits. Note - dates are a great sweet treat, but they shouldn't be used daily.
Add healthy fats to make it creamy
High sugar yogurts or multiple bananas are often used to make a smoothie creamy. Instead, opt for healthy fats such as avocado, coconut meat, chia seeds, coconut butter, or almond/peanut butter to reduce the sugar content. This will also help to increase the satiety level of your smoothie and make you feel fuller longer.
Check your protein powder
If you use protein powder in your smoothies, check that it doesn't contain any added sugar. Monk fruit and stevia are generally tolerated by most people and do not contribute to the total sugar count. If your protein powder contains sugar, I suggest switching it to a sugar free brand.