Ahead are recipes for two great tasting and dairy-free shakes for fat burning. They’re easy to make, surprisingly filling and taken in a certain way can really help you lose weight.
First though, a look at why what most people drink is usually having the opposite effect and how to avoid it.
The Problem With Beverages
What we drink is often a big contributor to body fat and weight gain. Sodas, commercial fruit juices, sugary milk drinks and alcoholic beverages like beer can all contribute significantly to an expanding waistline.
Cola is particularly fattening (both regular and diet), but packaged fruit juice is almost as bad. It is changed structurally during processing to a point where most of the health benefits are lost and only simple sugars remain. Both are really worth avoiding if you want to lose weight.
Most of us have grown up taught that milk is healthy. Unfortunately, the way non-organic milk is produced these days is highly questionable.
Obviously flavored milk drinks will be full of sugar and likely to provoke weight gain, but even regular unflavored milk has been shown to be very insulinogenic. This means drinking it causes a strong insulin response – exactly what you don’t want if you’re trying to access stored body fat for fuel.
While organic milk may have a place for very active people and bodybuilders, any true fat burning shake should probably avoid pasteurized cow’s milk. There are better and healthier alternatives and the recipes ahead will use two of the best as a base.
5 Rules of Fat Burning Shakes
1. Don’t Use Cow’s Milk
As mentioned above, drinking cow’s milk promotes a significant insulin response from your body. This is the opposite of what you’re looking for from a beverage if you’re trying to lose weight.
The two milk alternatives that I like to use in my fat burning shakes are coconut water and almond milk. Almond milk can be made at home from soaked almonds and, if you’re lucky enough to have access to fresh coconuts, then the coconut water from inside the hull is extremely healthy.
Realistically, for everyday use, this unsweetened almond milk and this pure coconut water are great dairy-free alternatives, easy to store and not much more than cow’s milk for all of their health benefits.
2. Avoid Sugar
I’m constantly surprised by how many people will take an otherwise healthy food or drink, add loads of sugar to it and then complain that they are not losing weight. Sugar, not natural fats are the true enemy of weight loss and no shake with loads of sugar can be considered fat burning.
Unfortunately, that also includes high sugar fruits. While eating fruit is healthy, it should be minimized for a while when you want to lose weight.
These fat burning shake recipes ahead still taste great and can even be quite sweet. Instead of sugar, you can use crushed berries, which are actually low in simple sugars, or raw cacao (chocolate) with no calorie stevia.
3. Add Protein
Protein is the most thermogenic (encourages the body to burn fat) of all the macronutrients. A good fat burning shake will definitely benefit from some high-quality protein added to it.
Most protein powders are full of artificial sweeteners and/or simple carbs like maltodextrin. Both are best avoided so I like this organic and cold filtered whey protein, which is without flavorings or artificial sweeteners and very low in carbohydrates. For vegans or vegetarians who like to avoid milk products, hemp protein is a good alternative.
4. Add Healthy Fats
Far from making you fat, certain beneficial fats are vital for your body and can really help with losing weight. Good fats will fill you up and some, like the medium chain triglycerides in coconut, have even been shown to directly encourage fat burning.
The recipes ahead use chia seeds (high in omega-3 fatty acids) and desiccated coconut. Incidentally, these two also add beneficial fiber to the mix and that makes for very filling shakes.
5. Add Fat Burning Herbs
This last step is optional but it can really help speed up weight loss. Two herbs that I like for shakes designed for weight loss are maca and green matcha tea.
Maca is a Peruvian herb with many health benefits, including elevating energy levels, raising libido and stimulating weight loss. While green matcha tea is a super-powered version of regular green tea with more than 100 times the antioxidant power and a delicate flavor. You probably won’t taste either of these in the shake recipes ahead, but you’ll be likely to feel them in your energy levels for several hours afterwards.
Ingredients assembled, let’s look at how to make the shakes and when is the best time to drink them.
The recipes ahead are designed to be simple enough to make in a normal plastic handheld shaker. A blender would make for an even smoother shake and allow for more ingredients. Feel free to experiment with that as well, particularly if you’re making them for more than one person.
Here’s a video showing even more fat burning freakfast shakes!
Chocolate, Almond and Coconut Weight Loss Shake
- 1 tablespoon of desiccated coconut.
- 2 heaped teaspoons of raw cacao.
- 2 tablespoons of unsweetened whey or hemp protein.
- 1 heaped teaspoon of organic maca.
- 1 1/2 cups of almond milk.
- 3 – 7 drops of stevia glycerite (depending on how sweet you like it).
- 1 or 2 ice cubes.
- Add all of the ingredients to your shake in the order listed above.
- Put the lid on tightly, making sure it’s well sealed, hold the top and shake vigorously for 10 seconds.
- Take the lid off and pour into a cup or drink directly from the shaker bottle. Best enjoyed immediately.
Berry, Chia and Green Matcha Tea Fat Burning Shake
- 1/4 cup of berries of your choice (raspberries and blueberries are both great for weight loss). Soak in a cup of warm water and a splash of apple cider vinegar for a few minutes first if not organic.
- 1 tablespoon of good green matcha tea.
- 1 tablespoon of organic chia seeds.
- 2 tablespoons of whey or hemp protein.
- 1 1/2 cups of coconut water.
- Optional – a couple of drops of stevia (depending on the berries it may be sweet enough).
- 1 or 2 ice cubes.
- Add the berries, chia seeds and matcha tea to the shaker and use a fork to mash them up. Blueberries will be easy, but bigger berries like strawberries might take a bit of work.
- Once the berries are mashed, mix them well with the chia seeds and matcha tea. A blender makes it much smoother, but if you don’t mind a few chunks then mashing the berries is simple and makes for less cleaning.
- Add the rest of the ingredients, close the lid tightly and shake hard.
- Drink immediately for the freshest taste and most antioxidants.
When to Have Your Shakes for Weight Loss
The purpose of the fat burning shakes is to have them instead of a meal, particularly a sugary and fattening one like breakfast cereal or a high carb lunch. They’re highly nutritious and you’ll find them quite filling as well.
Given this, I think they make a great replacement breakfast or lunch. They’re also good straight after a workout for building muscle (one of the best things you can do for body fat reduction).
Perhaps the only time they might not be appropriate is as a dinner replacement. This is simply because they are so energizing that you might have trouble getting to sleep.
I hope you enjoy these fat burning shake recipes if you make them up for yourself. There are plenty of variations and additions that can be made, but it’s best to avoid adding high sugar fruits or any other sweetener apart from stevia if you want to lose weight.