In smoothies generally, nuts are certainly delicious and nutritious, perhaps even a little auspicious and that certainly isn’t fictitious.
These lovely little flavour bombs are full of healthy fats, protein, fibre and minerals and more, which makes them a great addition to any or all of your smoothie recipes.
But more importantly, nuts are good addition to add to your breakfast smoothies.
Nuts are very versatile as an ingredient.
You can blend them whole into your smoothies, crush them up and sprinkle them on top, or make them into a nut milk and use it as the base liquid of your smoothie.
But which nuts we hear you ask, there are so many to choose from?
Let’s run through some of our favourite varieties of nuts for you now and remember you can try adding any of these below in your own breakfast smoothie creations.
One of the more popular nuts and dairy-free milk substitutes.
Almonds are a really high source of Vitamin E, an antioxidant perhaps most known for its skin protective qualities.
On top of that, having almonds in the diet can have a beneficial effect on gut bacteria, help improve metabolic health and support in reducing the risk of high blood sugar and cardiovascular disease.
So, almonds, for a start are certainly a great addition to any breakfast recipe.
One of the higher sources of fats in the nut kingdom and a much-loved nut by the keto community.
Macadamias have healthy fats and fibres to support the reduction of excess cholesterol as well as helping to improve antioxidant status and reduce inflammation.
If you’re searching for sources of selenium, brazil nuts are likely to be at the top of the list.
Be careful not to gorge on too many brazil nuts though, as too much selenium has been known to cause headaches, fatigue and irritability.
It’s usually recommended to have no more than 5 Brazil nuts per day.
This makes 5 brazil nuts the perfect amount to throw into your blender in the morning with all of your other smoothie ingredients!
On top of its delicious, creamy taste, cashews contain a decent chunk of manganese, copper, magnesium and phosphorous.
Cashews are always a favourite because they are quite a soft nut and their taste is quite mild too, which means that they won’t affect the taste of your breakfast smoothie too much when you add them.
Also, like macadamia nuts above, cashews can also help to increase our antioxidant production.
There is this philosophy known as the doctrine of signatures, that states that a food looks like the body part it is good for.
Walnuts are a perfect example of this, as it looks like our brain and contains high amounts of omega-3 fatty acids.
Omega-3s are helpful for both the heart and brain as well as helping to reduce excessive inflammation.
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Peanuts are not a nut. #mindblown
They’re part of the legume family happily sitting alongside beans and lentils.
Despite their amazing flavour and the popularity of peanut butter, peanuts are still classed as a legume.
So why are we writing about them?
Well they are still a nut-like ingredient (for want of a better explanation for you) that you can still add into your breakfast smoothie.
Peanuts also have a pretty similar nutritional value to almonds and the other nuts above, so, go ahead and use them if you want to.
Any downsides to adding nuts into breakfast smoothies?
Nuts as well as seeds and grains, contain a naturally occurring substance called phytic acid.
This compound may impair our ability to digest key minerals such as zinc, magnesium, calcium and iron.
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What you can do about it?
There are a few things to try if you’re worried about phytic acid, have you ever heard of activated nuts?
Activating nuts is the simple process of soaking nuts for a few hours (usually between 1 and 12) to inactivate the phytic acid in these foods.
Doing this can improve digestion of the aforementioned minerals.
If you’re activating your own nuts, it will make them quite watery and not as tasty, but this shouldn’t be too noticeable if you’re blending them up in your smoothies.
If you’re sprinkling them on top and you want and crave that characteristic texture, you can dehydrate them after soaking or just simply buy activated and dehydrated nuts to add.
Getting cold sores?
Nuts, especially peanuts, contain higher levels of the amino acid arginine than other foods.
Unfortunately this increases the replication of certain viruses, like the one involved in cold sores.
So, this may be a food group to avoid if you’re having a flare up or feeling a little run down.
Blending up nuts to add to your smoothies
Nuts can certainly be a fantastic addition to your favourite breakfast smoothies in terms of both flavour and the health benefits they bring.
They can also add extra texture and more to an otherwise thin, lifeless and dull morning smoothie.
Finally, you have to remember that your breakfast smoothie is your last meal until mid-morning, so the nuts add in extra satiety as well.
If you’re looking for some great breakfast smoothie recipes you can add nuts to, visit our recipe page or if you want, you could try our Power Punch Green Smoothie recipe which includes an almond milk base already.