Liquid diets have been used for quick weight loss for many years. More recently marketed as short-term detox diets where you're able to drop 10 pounds in 2 days, these so-called "miracle diets" have been deemed "semi-starvation diets" by Vanderbilt University's health psychology department. However, not all liquid is created equal; many agree there is a healthy alternative available that can be a helpful addition to a sensible eating plan and aid you in your weight-loss efforts -- smoothies.
Different Than The Old Way
The old-fashioned liquid diet that uninformed and desperate people once used for fast weight loss was not healthy. It is still being marketed as a fast way to shed pounds. The core strategy for these diets has been to drink a juice or other liquid exclusively for a certain period of time and then return to your old way of eating, supposedly thinner and all better. According to MayoClinic.com, a successful diet is actually based on changing your lifestyle. The smoothie diet plan is an addition to a healthful eating plan. Instead of replacing your entire day's worth of nutrients with one liquid, you may choose to replace a meal or two with a healthy smoothie. You may just add a smoothie as a quick snack. It isn't recommended that you only eat smoothies all day for any length of time unless you are instructed to do so by your physician.
Suggested Menu Plans
To start, you may want to look at your current menu plans and substitute one of your higher calorie meals with a low-calorie smoothie. This will produce measurable weight-loss success and encourage you to continue your new healthier habits. For instance, if you're like most people, your highest calorie meal will be dinner. A spaghetti and meatball dinner with a salad will have around 480 calories. This does not include extra Parmesan cheese or bread. Switch that to a 12-ounce fruit smoothie for 200 calories, and you have achieved at least a 280-calorie deficit. By saving this many calories a day, you will see weight loss around 1.7 pounds per week.
Renowned cardiologist Dr. Mehmet Oz recommends his longevity shake, which includes an obscure ingredient, maca Powder. With or without the powdered maca root, this smoothie is healthy and nutritious. Combine 1 cup of almond milk, 1 cup of blueberries, fresh or frozen, 1 handful of goji berries, 1 heaping tablespoon powdered maca and half a banana. Blend until smooth and serve in a chilled glass. Another tasty smoothie recipe replaces the almond milk with nonfat milk. Combine 1 cup of nonfat milk, 1 cup of strawberries, 1 banana, 1/2 cup vanilla yogurt and 5 ice cubes. Blend until smooth and enjoy right away.
What to Avoid
When creating your own smoothies at home, you have control over the quality and quantity of your ingredients. However, your smoothie diet plan allows you to stop at your local smoothie shop for a quick snack on the go. When someone else makes your drink, be sure to avoid added sugars, syrups and powders. These will add calories to your drink. Also, make sure not to order drinks made from whole milk. If possible, request your smoothie be made with skim milk. Lastly, if your smoothie is made from a juice base, make sure it is made from whole fruit juice, not juice cocktails.
While adding smoothies into your diet, you will want to maintain other healthy eating habits. Remember to always eat plenty of fruits and vegetables, drink an adequate amount of water, get enough sleep and add some physical activity into your routine. Remember that being healthy and losing weight are part of a well-rounded lifestyle and not a quick-fix.
Always speak with your health-care provider before making any changes to your diet or exercise program. Recipes and advice are not intended to replace medical care.