A Few of Two Nutrition Nuts Favorite Things:

Kellie McKinney, MS | Healthy Lifestyle columnist | Co-Founder of Two Nutrition Nuts

A Few of Two Nutrition Nuts Favorite ThingsFruits smoothies can be an easy way to give your body essential nutrients. The best way to know the exact ingredients in your  smoothie is to make them yourself. All you need is a blender, fruit and a base, such as water, milk or yogurt.

Vitamins and Minerals:
Citrus fruits, such as grapefruit, oranges, tangerines and lemons, contain good amounts of vitamin C, potassium and folate. Blueberries, strawberries, blackberries, raspberries, cranberries and grapes contain particular antioxidants that help fight inflammation.  Tropical fruits include papaya, kiwi fruit, pineapple, avocado, coconut, pomegranates, bananas and mangoes. These fruits are sources of vitamin C, potassium, folate and magnesium. Cherries, apricots, peaches and plums provide beta carotene.

Apples and pears, contain vitamin C and potassium. The melon category includes watermelon, cantaloupe, and honey dew which all contain vitamin C.

Drinking fruit smoothies can help with your fiber intake. The soluble fiber found in fruit helps slow digestion and may help control blood sugar and lower cholesterol.

Creating your own smoothie means you get to choose a base of your liking. You can add water, cow’s milk, almond, coconut, soy milk or yogurt to the fruit in order to add thickness.  The healthier options would include water, low-fat milk, unsweetened almond and coconut milk or low-fat yogurt, which will add flavor and nutrients without a huge number of calories. The low-fat dairy contains calcium and vitamin D, which help your bones stay strong.

Behold: Overnight Oats. Basically, it’s a perfect mix of creamy yogurt goodness, rolled oats and your favorite fruity toppings. The oats soak in a mixture of almond milk and Greek yogurt overnight, thus softening them to perfection by the morning. I love it because I can wake up before my workout and quickly pull it out of the fridge and enjoy it on the go. It’s so easy, and honestly, so so good. Simply mix all of the ingredients together and set it in your fridge in a sealed mason jar at night, and instantly enjoy the next morning.

“TNN style overnight oats”
1/2cup oats
1/3 cup unsweetened almond milk
1/3cup Greek yogurt
1 tablespoon of chia seeds
1/4 teaspoon pure vanilla extract if desired

Mix all ingredients in a bowl and place in fridge.  (Mason jars are handy here to store oats in fridge after mixing).

Remove from fridge next morning, let sit for 15-20min.

I like to add fresh berries and a little agave nectar in the morning or sometimes I top it off with a handful of walnuts and some sliced up banana or a tablespoon of almond or peanut butter. Test out a few different combinations and see what you like best.

I love having this in the morning because it keeps me full and feeling good. It’s a great way to start your day since the oats are filling and the yogurt is packed with healthy probiotics and lots of calcium. Plus almost every ingredient is a flat-belly food!

Banana bread overnight oats
(Vegan friendly)

1 large ripe banana, mashed
1 tablespoon chia seeds
1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 cup rolled oats
3/4 cup almond milk
1/4 teaspoon pure vanilla extract (optional)

In a small bowl, mash the banana until almost smooth. Now stir in the chia seeds and cinnamon until combined.
Stir in the oats, almond milk, and vanilla (if used). Cover and refrigerate overnight.
In the morning, stir the oat mixture to combine. If your Vegan Overnight Oats have a runny consistency even after they soak, simply stir in an additional 1 tablespoon chia seeds and place the mixture back in the fridge until it has thickened up. If the oat mixture is too thick, simply add a splash of almond milk and stir to combine.

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