The right smoothie can be a healthy supplement to your diet. Fast food restaurants offer smoothies for individuals on the go, but knowing which smoothies won’t spoil your diet is a must. Choosing the right smoothie can save you from consuming excessive amounts of calories, fat and sugar.
Many fast food chains sell smoothies that can fit into a balanced lifestyle. For instance, McDonald’s® Strawberry Banana Smoothie and Wild Berry Smoothie contain 210 calories, 0.5 grams of fat and 44 grams of sugar in 12 fluid ounces. The key is to buy the small portion size. The same can be said for Burger King®, whose Strawberry Banana Smoothie is 200 calories, 0 grams of fat and 40 grams of sugar 12 fluid ounces. Burger King’s® Tropical Mango Smoothie is 210 calories, 0.5 grams of fat and 41 grams of sugar 12 fluid ounces.
Jamba Juice’s® All Fruit™ Smoothies are good options if you want a larger portion size. In 16 fluid ounces, the smoothies range from 210 to 240 calories, 0 to 0.5 grams of fat and 42 to 53 grams of sugar. What about Planet Smoothie®? Well, they receive two thumbs up. The Planet Lite™ items contain 190 to 240 calories, 0 to 0.5 grams of fat and 18 to 38 grams of sugar in 16 fluid ounces.
When in doubt, chose the real fruit smoothies made solely with fruit and water. Typically, the base (not the fruit) contains the extra calories, fat and added sugar. Steer clear of full-fat dairy products, such as whole milk, high-fat yogurt or ice cream. Never hesitate asking the cashier which ingredients are in the smoothies.
You can’t go wrong in creating your own smoothies. All that you need is a blender, fruit and a liquid based. Experimenting with various flavors can be fun! Plus, you’ll know exactly what goes into your smoothie. Try combining seasonal fruits with fun bases, such as almond milk, low-fat yogurt or water. Don’t forget that you can add herbs, such as mint or lavender, to give your smoothie a flavorful twist!
By Laura Oliver, RD