Smoothies deliver essential nutrients

Basic information on smoothies to convert your picky eater.

Smoothies are a rich source of vitamins, nutrients and fiber. Similar, to juicing, smoothies are one way in which people are trying to obtain the necessary daily servings of fruit and vegetables. MyPlate recommends that people fill half of their plate at each meal with fruits and vegetables. Adults in general should consume two cups of fruit per day and three cups of vegetables per day. Fruit and vegetable consumption is based on a person’s age, gender and activity level.

A blender is needed to make a smoothie. Blenders in general are much cheaper than a juicer and can range in prices, depending on the function you want it to play. If you want to just be able to make a regular smoothie then a $20 blender will work for you. When blending, all of the parts of the food items get broken down and mixed together, there is no pulp left behind like there is in juicing. Blending also lets you use more of the whole fruit or vegetable.

Make sure to wash all produce. There is no need to buy fancy fruit and vegetable washes. Using cool, running tap water and a vegetable brush can help you clean your produce, by removing dirt, grime and unseen bacteria. Refrigerate any leftovers immediately to reduce the risk of foodborne illness.

Smoothies are relatively easy to make and are very tasty. Smoothies can be made using a variety of ingredients and are low cost to make. Smoothies are a great way to get picky eaters to try new foods.

As a mother of a former picky eater I have used smoothies to improve my child’s overall health and under a pediatrician’s advice, help my child gain and maintain his weight. Using what I knew through Michigan State University Extension, I made a chart of the things that my child loved to eat, would eat and things he flat out refused to touch. With the list in hand at our next doctor’s visit, his pediatrician and I came up with smoothie recipes based on my son’s love of milk. As time went on and he grew older I would slowly introduce new foods to him. Of course, he his response would be “I don’t like that,” and I would reply that he liked it when I put it in his smoothie. This would get me a quizzical look, but he would then try the tiniest piece of the item. We made a chart to keep track of all the foods that he tried and put stickers on it. The food chart is long gone now and he has a healthy appetite and I credit that to introducing him to new foods using smoothies.

Don’t give up on your picky eater! If even you, yourself are stubborn towards a particular fruit of vegetable, alter it but turning it into a smoothie. Smoothies are a great way to receive nutrients you may otherwise lack from not trying a food item.

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