Follow This RD-Approved Simple Smoothie Formula To Boost Your Sleep Quality and Mood

Photo: Stocksy/Ina Peters
While it may be exceedingly tempting to “freestyle” your daily smoothie by throwing in whatever is in the kitchen at the moment (we have all been there, especially when we're sprinting out the door in the morning), it is worth taking the time to follow a loose formula to score the best texture and flavor possible.

Enter: The genius smoothie formula developed by registered dietitian Jess Bippen, RD, which can also help promote a better mood and good night’s sleep. The brains behind @nourishedbynutrition recently took to Instagram to share her favorite way to get a creamy, satisfying, and super-nutritious smoothie every single time.

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Bippen’s formula is centered around creating a well-balanced smoothie that keeps added sugar at bay while being packed with protein, fiber, and healthy fats. This combination, she says, will help boost your energy levels, gut health, sleep quality, and even your mood—so you can go to bed feeling accomplished and wake up feeling rested and refreshed. Plus, her smoothie formula is naturally sweet, creamy, and delicious. Sign us up!

Jess Bippen’s balanced smoothie formula

1/2 to 1 cup frozen veggies
1 cup low-sugar fruit or 1/2 cup higher-sugar fruit
15-25 grams protein
1-2 Tbsp healthy fats
1-2 Tbsp fiber (optional)
1 to 1 1/2 cups liquid to your desired texture

The great thing about this smoothie formula is that it’s super flexible, so you can blend in whatever you have sitting in the fridge, freezer, and pantry on any given day (not to mention whatever flavors you are currently craving). Plus, it doesn’t require any expensive ingredients that may be hard to source.

The veg

When it comes to frozen veggies, riced cauliflower is a favorite of Bippen’s. Cruciferous vegetables such as cauliflower are excellent sources of vitamin C, which is essential for more than just an immune system boost. Uma Naidoo, MD, a nutritional psychiatrist and chef, previously told Well+Good that vitamin C is a key player in supporting mental health. It's also essential for producing neurotransmitters in the brain and keeping dopamine and norepinephrine levels stable, which Dr. Naidoo says can help prevent anxiety and promote overall happiness.

You could also use dark leafy greens here, such as spinach, to get a mental health boost. Just one cup of raw spinach offers 40 percent of your daily magnesium needs, which helps promote better sleep quality, reduces stress levels, and supports stable moods.

The fruit

Bananas are another favorite food source for helping you drift off to sleep while making your morning, evening, or nightly smoothie extra creamy and naturally sweet. Bananas are, after all, chock-full of potassium (to relax your muscles), plus serotonin and tryptophan, which both help you both fall and stay asleep through the night. Bippen also likes to add berries for an antioxidant and fiber boost.

The protein and healthy fat

When it comes to getting in that 15-25 gram protein recommendation, there are a few easy ways to do it. Bippen loves to use a high-quality protein powder to hit her goal, but Greek yogurt and skyr are also excellent options. Yogurt offers both 10 percent of your daily magnesium needs as well as a good source of tryptophan to help you get that much-needed eight hours of shut-eye so you can feel energized the next day.

Finally, Bippen loves to lean on nut butters for a hearty source of brain-boosting healthy fats and serotonin, which help us to manage stress and fend off depression and anxiety.

TL; DR? This smoothie formula is excellent inspiration for building better breakfasts and snacks, as having a combination of fiber-rich carbs, healthy fats, and plenty of protein is one of your best tools for supporting a healthy, happy mind and a good night’s sleep. A protein-rich diet filled with good-for-you fats from omega-3 fatty acids and other whole food sources will keep you satiated throughout the day to prevent those dreaded 2 p.m. slumps, too. Choosing foods that are rich in sleep-promoting nutrients like magnesium, serotonin, and tryptophan will help you wind down at the right time each evening and get the quality of sleep you’re looking for so you can start your day refreshed.

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