Smoothies for Truckers:
All smoothie ingredients except milk and ice.
All ingredients except ice in blender before blending.
All ingredients, blended and thick.
You can easily analyze your recipe for nutritional data by entering each ingredient and its amount in the form field of CalorieCount.About.com. (We made just such an analysis, a comparison, below.)
If one of your ingredients comes up with a pink box in it, you may need to choose a specific option. Vicki chose specific options regarding Chia Seeds and stevia powder and was amazed to see that the recipe above contains 870 calories!
Thankfully, there are much less calorie dense foods that you can blend into smoothies for truckers.
The trade-off, of course, is how and where you plan to store smoothie ingredients. Can you store them in an ice chest without freezing or do you need an actual refrigerator? (Some fresh produce perishes quickly or is temperature-sensitive.)
If you're the type of person who wants to "chew" your food rather than drink it, undertaking this effort may not be what you want to do.
On another trucking website, we came across small blenders like these which could be used in a truck.
Granted, the storage space for a smaller unit would be smaller than that required by a larger blender. Also, if everything is contained in one unit, clean up could be quick and easy.
If the items you intend to blend can truly be blended with 250 watts of power, fine. Because we had no APU in Mike's truck, the type of inverter that we used when he drove for his last regional trucking company could handle 1500 watts peak power. So 250 watts of usage would have been a piece of cake.
However, the denser or harder it is to blend your choice of ingredients, the more power you will need to blend them. If you're into using whole vegetables and fruit in your smoothies, you will probably need more power.
Some blenders just wear out faster, whether from hard usage or from the ingredients. That's one of the reasons why we always look at a product's warranty before buying.
One lady who makes "green smoothies" with ingredients like raw spinach and kale recommends buying a BlendTec blender. One such unit -- which is said to be of commercial quality -- is shown at right. It is obviously much more expensive than the 250-watt products above. However, this one also comes with a 3-year warranty. We saw one online that had an unprecedented 7-year warranty. Wow!
This product uses 1560 watts of power. Obviously, a 1500-watt inverter can't power this. You will need a higher-powered inverter. Will your trucking company let you have one in your truck?
Smoothies Could Create Need for Restroom Breaks
The more liquid you have in your beverage, the more often you may need to stop to go to the restroom after consuming it. Will this disrupt your ability to deliver your load on time?
If you suddenly go to a higher fiber smoothie, you may have some intestinal upset. We recommend ramping up your smoothie consumption over time, starting with small amounts.
Don't forget to clean all of your blender parts after use. This could be a snap if you have created a small kitchen in your truck.
Smoothies For Better Nutrition and Weight Loss
Do you remember Vicki's favorite smoothie recipe from above? It had 3 tablespoons of peanut butter in it. (Actually, this was a guessed amount; she never measured it.)
For the sake of comparison, Vicki kept playing with the amount of spinach one would have to eat to get the same calories as is in 1 tablespoon of peanut butter. Because it is very low in calories, it would take about 13.5 cups of spinach to get the same number of calories!
(Could you even get 13.5 cups of spinach in a blender at the same time?)
1 tablespoon peanut butter
13.5 cups spinach
This is why some people have turned to making green smoothies for better health and weight loss. Spinach is just one of the "green" fresh produce items that can be put into this drink.
The flavor of a green smoothie can be adjusted with fruit or healthier sweeteners.
Will I Come Out Ahead Financially?
Depending on the nutritional quality of your smoothie; how much you spend for your blender and your ingredients; and your consistency with drinking smoothies, there could be payback over time in terms of
Money saving tip: If you have a home support team who is willing to search for you while you're on the road, he/she can look on eBay, Craigslist or other online ad sites for used sturdy blenders.
When changing your diet, give your body time to adjust. Start slowly on changes.
Keep appliances that come in contact with food absolutely clean between meals. We recommend using hot soapy water.
Do not burn out a blender by attempting to blend in too many ingredients without enough liquid. If your blender is having a hard time, you need more power.
Consider carefully how you will store your smoothie ingredients in your truck. You don't want for temperature-sensitive produce to wilt before it can be consumed.
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