Protein smoothies give you energy and keep you satisfied throughout the day. Adding collagen, like Healthful Seasons Collagen Peptides, will give you that extra boost of protein with important amino acids that help the body repair your tendons, bones, and joints.
Why take collagen?
Collagen has so many health benefits for women, that we devoted a whole blog post to exploring the many reasons why women need collagen.
But New York dermatologist Whitney Bowe, author of The Beauty of Dirty Skin: The Surprising Science of Looking and Feeling Radiant from the Inside Out sums it up well: collagen is "... the glue that holds the body together."
Unfortunately, as we age, our bodies’ production of collagen naturally slows down. The cell structures weaken and our skin gets thinner. The result is reduced elasticity in our skin and the appearance of wrinkles.
Luckily, research suggests that taking collagen supplements can prevent and even reverse some of this damage by increasing our skin elasticity and hydration, and decreasing wrinkle depth (1, 2).
Not to mention, collagen is fundamental for healthy joints, hair, and nails (3).
What are the benefits of blueberries?
Blueberries are one of our top ten favorite fruits for smoothies and it's no secret why.
Blueberries are packed with nutrients like fiber, vitamin C, vitamin K and manganese (4). But most impressive is the high concentration of complex nutrients that offer superior health benefits to us. Not only are they packed with antioxidants, but blueberries also contain unique anti-inflammatory phytonutrients (5).
Research even suggests that the high content of antioxidants in blueberries may help to reduce blood pressure and the risk of developing cancer (5).
Why do women need protein?
Research is clear: protein plays an essential role in helping us meet many of our wellness and healthy aging goals, whether that's losing or maintaining healthy weight, gaining muscle, or simply feeling healthier and more energetic.
As an example, one study with women over 64 found that adding additional protein to the participants' daily diets resulted in significantly more muscle gain and fat loss compared to resistance training alone (6).
Currently, the recommended daily allowance of protein for adults 19 and over stands at 0.8 grams of protein per 1 kg of body weight (0.36 grams per pound) (7). That would mean that a woman who weighs 170.6 lbs. (the average weight for American women) (8), should consume about 62 grams of protein a day to meet her basic nutritional needs.
However, there is an increasing amount of research that suggests that these recommendations are only suitable for young adults. Recent studies are actually finding that as we age, we need to increase our protein intake beyond this RDA in order to maintain healthy muscles and bones (7).
Women especially need to be sure that they're getting the amount of protein that their body needs as they get older.
For one, according to the National Osteoporosis Foundation, since women tend to have smaller, thinner bones than men, we're at a much higher risk for osteoporosis (9). Once we start losing our estrogen, our bones start losing some protection, only making our bones more fragile.
As a result, a whopping 80% of Americans diagnosed with osteoporosis (weak and brittle bones) are women and one out of three postmenopausal women are affected by osteoporosis (9). Further, because of the condition, one in every two women over age 50 will break a bone (10).
But the good news is that we can reduce our future risk of osteoporosis by ensuring that we incorporate enough protein into our diets (9).
Why add protein to smoothies?
Adding a scoop of nut butter, nuts, Greek yogurt, or chia seeds to a smoothie is an easy and delicious way to meet your daily protein target.
But most importantly, smoothies are a practical way to help us spread out our protein intake throughout the day.
While there isn't consensus yet, some studies suggest that our bodies can only use about 20-25 grams of protein per meal for muscle building (11). That means loading one meal with tons of protein powder is unlikely to do much good for our bodies. Instead, whether our goal is muscle building or overall nutrition, it is widely recommended that we spread out our protein intake evenly across the day and pair that protein with a variety of nutrients (think fruits and veggies!) and amino acids (11, 12).
Whether we're struggling to increase your protein intake in the morning, afternoon, or during your snack, a smoothie offers a practical solution. With the addition of Healthful Seasons Collagen Peptides and smoothie enhancers, we're guaranteed a well-rounded nutritional profile.
Blueberry Protein Smoothie
Pump up the protein and antioxidants after your workout and before you start your day! This smoothie will help repair muscles, give you energy and keep you satisfied!
1 ½ cups frozen blueberries
½ tsp cinnamon
1 tsp organic honey
1 tsp vanilla extract
2 tbsp Chia Seeds
1/3 cup nonfat plain Greek yogurt or Almond Milk Yogurt
1 scoop Healthful Seasons Collagen Peptides
Old fashioned oats (for topping)
Blend all ingredients together on a smoothie setting/high power, periodically pushing ingredients down from the sides and blend until smooth. Top with fresh blueberries, cinnamon and oats.
Calories 403, Fat 0.9 grams, Fiber 12 grams, Protein 12 grams