Why Smoothies Are Easy, Delicious Productivity Boosters

If you don't get the right nutrition, your whole day will blend together. So you better get the right fruits, nuts, and veggies into the blender.

Software isn't going to power you through your day--you need a sweet suite of nutrients to do that. Your killer app, then, might be the quick, easy, ever-so-slurpable smoothie.

"Though it took me a long time to realize it, choosing to eat better had the biggest sustainable impact on my productivity levels," writes Jeffrey Bunn, founder of meal planning service Mealime. "And to start I only made one small change - drinking a green smoothie for breakfast each morning."

A smoothie is like a "liquid salad," which is important because, as we've learned from neuroscience, the amount of focused energy we get in a day depends on how well we nourish our brains. With that in mind, what smoothie ingredients should we put in our mouths?

peanut (or almond) butter

Nut butters are loaded with energy. Just make sure you go for the all-natural stuff; if there's a cartoon bear on the label, it's full of productivity-draining, belly-busting, made-in-a-lab artificial ingredients.

Coconuts (and their oil)

Sugar makes you feel good; coconut is one of the best places to land natural sugars. Your brain goes crazy for healthy fats; coconut oil's got you there.

Kale

Kale is the LeBron James of vegetables: it leads the league in a variety of vitamin categories.

As Columbia University psychiatrist Drew Ramsey notes, you get all this in a single cup of raw kale:

  • 33 calories (only!)
  • 134% of your daily vitamin C
  • 206% of your daily vitamin A
  • 684% of your daily vitamin K

low-fat yogurt

Because probiotics are your body's best friend.

Chia seeds

Chia seeds are called a "super food," and for a good reason: they got crazy amounts of omega-3 fatty acids--which your brain gets nourished by--and are laden with fiber (which makes you feel full), phytochemicals (which keeps your body working properly), and manganese (which keeps your bones safe). Most importantly, they turn all gelatinous when you soak them, so you can pretend you're breaking your fast on alien brains.

But don't forget: we know we won't do anything unless it's as easy as possible. So take BuzzFeed's advice and preplan your smoothies by making a week's worth of "smoothie packs" in your freezer so you can mete out the deliciousness each day.

[Image: Flickr user Bert Kaufmann]

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