4 Healthy Ingredients for Your Best Vegan Smoothie (+ Recipe)
Are you interested in making the most healthy and, quite frankly, best vegan smoothie? Then you’ve come to the right place.
From reducing your likelihood of getting dementia to helping your body produce collagen as you age, you’ll want to learn what these healthy smoothie ingredients can do to help enhance your longevity and quality of life.
I also included the best vegan smoothie recipe that incorporates these items (and a few others). This is my favorite smoothie to drink daily to ensure that I get all the nutrients I need while living that vegan intermittent fasting lifestyle.
It also tastes great.
But, as always, consult a doctor or health care professional before trying anything that I recommend.
4 Healthy Ingredients for Your Best Vegan Smoothie
Ingredient #1 – Chlorella
Algae is seriously underrated!
Oceanic plankton (which includes algae) account for 50-80% of all oxygen production on Earth! I mean, I’m not saying trees are slacking, but I am saying maybe I’m more of an algae-hugger now?
Algae foods are also hella nutrient-dense. And I can easily mask their taste in my smoothies.
That’s why chlorella isn’t the first algae I have on this list. But I am leading with it for a good reason. Here’s why I love chlorella…
Chlorella is a mega-source of B12 & has good amounts of:
- Vitamin A
- Omega-3 fatty acids
- Protein with all 9 amino-acids
These vitamins & nutrients are critical for maintaining healthy cells.
Chlorella has also been shown to help:
Chlorella promoting a more alkaline body is a big deal. Here’s why: many diseases thrive in a more acidic environment. We want our bodies to be alkaline by eating the right foods so we’re not nurturing an environment where disease can thrive as easily.
#2 – Berries
I typically opt for blueberries. But I often add strawberries into the mix too. And for a good reason. Berries come with a lot of goodness.
Studies have indicated that blueberries:
- Can decrease DNA damage that inevitably happens as we age
- Have more antioxidants than nearly any other fruit or vegetable
- Has anthocyanin, which can help improve your immunity and help build defenses against cancer
Plus, they’re only like 70 calories for a cup.
I also add some strawberries since they contain the antioxidant polyphenols. As this peer-reviewed study showed, polyphenols can help protect “the body’s tissues against oxidative stress and associated pathologies such as cancers, coronary heart disease and inflammation.”
Not sold on berries yet??
Well, this will convince you. I watched this lecture from the Head of Pharmacology at Oxford University, Professor David Smith, called “How B Vitamins & Omega 3s Reverse Cognitive Decline”. And there was a lot of great info about how to eat for brain health.
Berries came up. And I found this slide especially striking.
So, please, eat your berries! Or better yet, drink your berries in your smoothe.
#3 – Spirulina
Alright, I’m back on the topic of algae. Can’t stop. Won’t stop.
Let’s get into spirulina, which is a blue-green algae.
Spirulina is often lauded as the “most nutrient-dense food on Earth.” And it also is one of the oldest microorganisms on the planet. We’re talking billions of years! The Aztecs even used this food hundreds of years ago.
And now, in modern times, it’s deemed a superfood because it packs a mighty punch.
In the 20-calorie serving of spirulina that I add to my smoothie every day, I get a lot of high-quality nutrients.
Among these nutrients is a couple of extra grams of protein to mix with my protein powders. And we’re not talking about ANY kind of protein. Nope, spirulina possesses all the amino acids your body needs, which means that it’s a complete protein.
Spirulina also comes with a lot of antioxidants and decent amounts of:
- Vitamin A
- Vitamin C
Studies have also shown that spirulina can help with:
- Improving immunity
- Reducing inflammation
- Lowering the “bad” cholesterol LDL
- Flushing out toxins in your systems
- Increase muscular endurance & protect muscle damage for athletes
What to Know Before Using Spirulina
There are two types of spirulina – blue and green. And yes, the green spirulina is smellier than the blue, BUT it is also far denser with nutrients. However, you won’t taste it when you mix it in with a bunch of other goodness. (More on that later.)
I purchase my spurilina from the vegan brand Arbonne even though it’s more expensive than other spirulina. And here’s why: it doesn’t smell awful (unlike other spirulina I’ve tried). Plus, this product is a mixture that includes chlorella, broccoli, alfalfa, omega-3 seed blend, and more.
#4 – Collagen Protein Powder
As we age, we make less collagen. This is unideal because collagen (AKA the “most abundant protein found in the body“) is what makes our skin elastic and look/feel youthful. And while ingesting animal-derived collagen has become popular, it’s questionable whether that works. Harvard School of Public Health states, “non-industry funded research on collagen supplements is lacking.”
That’s why I want to go to the root of the problem: Give my body what it needs to produce collagen as I age.
Enter the Sunwarrior Collagen Building protein powder.
This powder has a lot going on. Including:
- Hyaluronic Acid, which is a “key molecule in skin aging“
- Peptides, which are the building blocks of collagen production
- Tremella mushroom, which shows promising results around promoting anti-wrinkle effects
- Kale, spinach, & spirulina, which have Vitamin A that supports (you guessed it) collagen production
There’s honestly just so much more going on in this protein powder. I love it. When I combine it with the Chocolate Vega Protein powder in the recipe at the bottom, my smoothie is thicker in a healthy-milkshake way. I dig it.
A quick note on flaxseeds, chia seeds & Omega-3s:
The lecture where I took the slide about berries was called “How B Vitamins & Omega 3s Reverse Cognitive Decline”. So, maybe you thought it was odd I didn’t include a smoothie staple to the mix: chia seeds and flaxseeds.
Well, I didn’t include them here as I don’t find them to be adequate as my primary source of omega-3s. What you want to make sure you get out of your omega-3 fatty acids are EPA and DHA acids. If you are low in these types of acids, your risk of developing cancer and Alzheimer’s can increase.
Chia seeds and flax seeds have ALA omega-3s. And they don’t convert effectively at all to EPA or DHA. Luckily, my MUCH-LOVED algae offer EPA & DHA (which, by the way, is how fish get their fatty acids – algae).
The Best Vegan Smoothie for Your Health:
- 4-6 ice cubes
- 1 scoop of Vega Chocolate Protein Powder
- 1 scoop of Sunwarrior Chocolate Collagen Building Protein Powder
- 1 scoop of Arbonne BeWell Spirulina Mix
- 1 scoop of Chlorella
- 1 banana
- 1 cup of blueberries
- 1 cup of strawberries
- 1.5ish cups of unsweetened vanilla almond milk
About 500 calories of goodness and about 40 grams of protein.
It takes me two full cups to drink it all. And even though the drink is green, it tastes chocolatey due to all the protein powder.
I generally have one of these glasses with a 450 calorie tofurkey sandwich at lunch to break my fast. And then, when the 3 pm workday lull hits, I sip on the second cup while working from home.
It’s yummy AF. And as I drink it, I think to myself: “this is liquid gold for my body!”
What Are Your Thoughts on The Best Vegan Smoothie?
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