6 tips for a healthier smoothie or icy beverage

9:00 a.m. Friday, June 30, 2017 Atlanta Life
Bita Honarvar
You can get smoothies in plenty of flavors, but making them yourself allows you to keep the calories under control. AJC FILE PHOTO

On the warmest of days, nothing beats the summer heat like an icy beverage.

The good news is frozen drinks and fruit smoothies are everywhere — from Starbucks to McDonald’s to juice bars to the nearest gas station. QuikTrip offers as many as 20 frozen drink options.

But alas, some of these cool treats can pack a lot of calories (some topping more than 600 calories) and put a chill on your efforts to slim down. So how does ice mixed with either fruit or coffee get so fattening?

Creaminess, added sugar and syrups and enormous drink sizes add up to a lot of “hidden” calories, according to experts.

Even so, experts say it’s OK to indulge in the occasional frozen treat, and it’s possible to revel in them on a more regular basis, especially if you make the drink yourself.

Making a carrot smoothie at home will help ensure you keep calories in check. 

Here are some tips on enjoying frozen drinks and smoothies while avoiding calorie land mines from Kristen Smith, a dietitian at Piedmont Healthcare and a spokesperson for the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics.

Special to the Washington Post
Frozen fruits are ideal for smoothies; it doesn’t matter much if their texture has been compromised once you throw them in the blender. Deb Lindsey for the Washington Post
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