Smoothies & Green Drinks & Juicing – Oh my!

smoothiejuiceAre you confused?

Do you hear people talking about protein shakes, fruit smoothies, green drinks, juicing, and the like and think ‘When did it get so complicated’?

I’m with ya!  And, I’ve found my way through the options and would love to shed some light.


For me, I’ve sorted things into 3 categories:

  • Blending
  • Extracting
  • Juicing

Blending – a pureed drink made with a blender type appliance. Called a smoothie, these drinks typically start with a liquid base (most commonly regular/coconut water, coconut/almond/soy/regular milk) and have add-ons like protein powder, fruits, nuts, superfoods and the like. They are a simple, convenient and fun way to bring in a healthy meal replacement, fruits and nutrition. I use and love the MagicBullet for my smoothies. Easy to use and clean.

Extracting – basically pulverizes everything into a drinkable liquid by breaking down the cell walls of the foods releasing the enzymes, protein, minerals, vitamins, essential fatty acids and nutrients from the food helping to increase absorption!  Unlike juicing the fiber remains (eg skin, stems, seeds) and along with all the nutrients they are a great way to get fiber, fruits AND vegetables into your diet. I use the Nutribullet for these drinks. Again, easy to use AND clean.

Juicing – another convenient way to extract vitamins, minerals and nutrients from fruits and vegetables. With juicing you also remove the fiber and leave only the liquid gold. Because the fiber is removed nutrients are absorbed more rapidly and typically give a quicker boost of energy. Maybe your grandmother had an old fashioned hand juicer and made fresh orange juice (yum). Today there are 3 primary versions of electric juicers called masticating, centrifugal and triturating juicers. Hardcore juicers will tell you their favorite and the pros and cons. For me I have a simple Breville centrifugal juicer that is…yup you guessed it… easy to use AND clean (important for me!)

I incorporate all 3 of these into my lifestyle. Each one has its pros and cons (which I am not here to debate.) I almost always start my day with a meal replacement smoothie. Then I typically either have a extracted smoothie or a juice in the afternoon, depending upon how I feel and my energy level. Sometimes I have both.

Here’s my favorite, favorite smoothie recipe (and a link to a video of me making it in a recent challenge given to me by someone posing as James Bond – long story but enjoy!)

Base of 10 oz. of coconut water. Add 3 scoops of NutrimealFree (vanilla, fructose/soy/dairy/gluten free plant based protein, low glycemic meal replacement powder), 1 scoop FibergyPlus (for extra fiber), ¾ cup frozen sweet cherries, ½ scoop Cacao Nibs, ¼ tsp Chocolate Extract. Blend and drink! (I included the links to where you can check out the Nutrimeal and FibergyPlus)

Comment below: what is your favorite method and favorite recipe?


  1. I love my green smoothies! Such a great, easy way to get veggies in. My daughter loves them too. Thanks for the post, Pam!

    • That’s great that your daughter loves them too! Wonderful to carry the education forward.

  2. I LOVE Smoothies… and I must therefore get me a nutribullet, I’ve heard they are the best.
    I do have a question… I am naturally super thin but I eat a lot… I am constantly eating (kind of like a gerbil). so… as filling as a morning smoothie is… well… 30 minutes later I’m hungry again, and mostly craving something warm and salty. what would you recommend I try? do you have anything in your routine like that?

    • Yes, I do love the Nutribullet. Especially that you can drink right from the cup. My thought on your question is to ask, what is the protein, carb and fat ratio of the smoothie you are making. Are you using a balanced meal replacement powder vs a protein powder? Also one with good fiber content. As a morning smoothie I use a powder that is balanced with the right ratio to nutrient my body and has fiber to be filling. It keeps me full for about 3 hours. Ones that are just protein based (which I use after a workout) aren’t good for the morning meal. You’ll be as hungry as a gerbil in no time! lol. The one I use and love USANA Nutrimeal Free (and I add an extra scoop of fiber) is noted in my post with a link to the site. Also, check the sugar content as well. That could be inducing your warm and salty cravings. Give it a try and let me know how it works!

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