Since our bodies need fuel to power us through our matches, it’s important to give it the right fuel…not a heavy meal, but something light…something like a nutrient-packed smoothie. I like energizing with a green smoothie before a match rather than a fruity one, simply because the fruity ones are loaded with fructose (sugar) which can lead to a sugar crash – and who needs that to happen in the middle of a match?
Not all green smoothies were created equal. All of the ingredients in this lean mean green machine are packed with vital nutrients that we tennis players need to perform our best on the court.
First, there is tofu, which is made from curdled soy milk from which the water has been removed. It’s a great source of protein and provides a healthy dose of calcium and manganese from a plant-based source. This good source of protein will help keep you from feeling hungry without feeling “full”, unlike many other smoothies.
Greek yogurt is also known for its healthy dose of protein and probiotics that support a healthy gut bacteria. Healthy gut bacteria helps keep our immune system strong and research shows that it may help in many disease states such as irritable bowel syndrome (IBS), Crohn’s, ulcerative colitis, colorectal cancer, diabetes, and even obesity.
Then there’s the baby spinach, with which I have a love-hate relationship–I hate it on my plate, but love it in a smoothie. The leaves are so thin that it blends perfectly and you can’t taste it at all! Not only that, but it packs a healthy dose of vitamins A and C plus folate, iron and calcium.
The chia seeds offer a healthy dose of antioxidants, fiber, manganese, phosphorous, magnesium, calcium, and iron and add a nice nutty flavor. Who knew you could do so much good for your body in one little smoothie?
All you need to do for this smoothie is to throw some tofu, plain Greek yogurt, spinach, almond milk, strawberries, and chia seeds into your blender and blend away! It’s as simple as that.
Smoothies are a fantastic way to sneak in some more fruits and vegetables during your day. They can make for a great breakfast on the go or a perfect midday snack. This recipe makes 2 smoothies–one for before your match to get your body ready for the competition, and one for after your match to re-energize your body and replace the nutrients you spent on the court.
What are your favorite smoothie ingredients? Let us know in the comments below!
The Perfect Green Smoothie
- 2 cups fresh baby spinach thoroughly washed
- 1 cup almond milk unsweetened
- 6 oz organic Greek yogurt plain
- ½ cup organic tofu firm
- 1 cup frozen strawberries
- 2 tsp chia seeds
- Blend all the ingredients together and enjoy!