Fresh green drinks, including both juices and smoothies, are one of the best ways to flood your body with the nutrients it needs to thrive.
I've talked about the benefits of these magical green concoctions before (here, here and here), taught you how to make them (here, here and here), and given you a ton of recipes as well. Today I want to share a little-known secret that might be preventing you from absorbing the maximum about of nutrients from these health-improving drinks.
The secret? Your green drinks need a little fat to help you properly absorb certain nutrients.
Certain nutrients, including vitamins A, K, E and D, and various minerals, are fat-soluble, meaning that fat must be present for your body to properly absorb them (another reason the whole low-fat/no-fat craze of the 1990's caused such a sharp increase in obesity and other disease rates in North America.) This means it's a good idea to always consume a little healthy fat either right before or with your green smoothie or juice.
Some excellent examples of healthy fats to add to your green drinks include:
- flax seeds
- chia seeds
- hemp seeds
- flax seed oil
- extra virgin olive oil
- raw, virgin coconut oil
Taking an omega-3 supplement with your green drink also counts.
All of those things above are delicious in smoothies, and a drizzle of a healthy oil or sprinkle of chia seeds in your juice is fantastic. A little goes a long way; in most cases a teaspoon or so is prefect in a large smoothie and about ½ teaspoon in a full glass of juice. Just like everything in life there is a balance between a little fat doing you a lot of good, and too much fat getting in the way and slowing down digestion.
Want to learn more about getting the most benefit from your food?
Check out my 10-Step Clean Up Your Diet™ program. You'll learn everything you need to know about clean eating and getting your health into tip-top shape.
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Hi, I went out to the shop to include one of the things you listed in my smoothie and instead of buying Coconut Oil I bought Coconut Milk.. I tried it anyway and it was actually quite nice with my Mean Green Smoothie. (Kale, 2 Apples, 1/2 Lemon, 1 Thumb of Ginger, 4 Celery, 1 Cucumber) do you think I ruined it's nutritive properties or is Coconut Milk also an okay healthy fat?
Thank you for the article. I am a big fan of putting in some avocado into my smoothie, but as far as oils, would they stay evenly distributed throughout the day or drift to top? Usually a full pitcher from my blendtec makes 3 blender bottles full for the day. Also, would ground flaxseed be adequate as a fat, too? Thanks
I had the Breville and loved it. Now I have the Vita mix and love it more. I felt I was losing the benefits of all the pulp I was tossing with the Breville.
But don't greens already have some fat in them?
I'm debating on purchasing a Breville juicer vs VitaMix. Wouldn't a VitaMix be more health beneficial because you drink pulp? Have you written about that anywhere on here? I am new to juicing/eating clean so any tips you can give me would be great. Btw- I discovered your site via YouTube. I love your videos! I'm also loving your site. It's very user friendly. Thank you!
So glad you like the videos! Juicing and blending are two different things, and the Breville (juicer) and Vitamix (blender) accomplish two different things. I'd say if you have to pick one get the Vitamix because it's more beneficial. Hope that helps! xx