The Verdict on Drinking Smoothies for Weight Loss

Smoothies can be a great way to get in extra protein and nutrients without a lot of effort and might help you lose weight.

Thumbs Up: Protein slows digestion.

"Personally, I am not a fan of smoothies for weight loss. I recommend eating real food and eating calories not drinking them for weight loss," says medical expert Julie Upton, MS, RD, co-founder of Appetite for Health Consulting.

Thumbs Down: Eat your calories.

"Smoothies can absolutely be a healthy weight-management staple," says Lisa Moskovitz, RD, CEO of NY Nutrition Group, author of The The Core 3 Healthy Eating Plan. "If you're trying to intentionally lose weight, focus on protein, fiber, and fat—the healthy eating trifecta."

Thumbs Up: Smoothies should contain the healthy trifecta.

When you blend a smoothie at home, you have control over the ingredients. Not so at smoothie shops and convenience stores.

Thumbs Down: Be wary of store-bought smoothies.

"I typically recommend smoothies as a snack or part of a meal with something chewable such as a slice of toast," says Laura Burak, MS, RD, owner of Laura Burak Nutrition.

Thumbs Up: Go easy on nut butters.

Like most dietitians on our medical board, Lauren Manaker, MS, RDN, author of The First Time Mom's Pregnancy Cookbook and Fueling Male Fertility, believes smoothies can be appropriate for weight loss, depending on the ingredients chosen

Thumbs Up: Good for "Breakfast Skippers."

With a smoothie or any blended or juiced drink, it's easy to unknowingly swallow a lot more calories than you expect, so be mindful, according to Tammy Lakatos Shames, RDN, CDN, CFT, and Lyssie Lakatos, RDN, CDN, CFT, also known as The Nutrition Twins.

Thumbs Down: Avoid a blender blunder.

As long as their clients stay mindful of the blender blunders when making smoothies, The Nutrition Twins do believe smoothies can be a great part of a weight loss diet.

Thumbs Up: Add fat-burning phytochemicals.

Drinking smoothies is an easy way to get a lot of nutrients like fruit, healthy fats from nut butter, protein, and fiber in one glass.

Thumbs Up: Add fiber to your smoothies.