A green smoothie diet can offer you a healthy and effective way to lose weight, provided you plan carefully. Here are some easy tips to help you draw up a balanced green smoothie diet plan.

1. Make your green smoothie the first meal of the day.

Green smoothies offer us an easy way to include healthy, vitamin-packed greens into our diet, so it is a good idea to start your day with a green smoothie and follow that with healthy meals or snacks throughout the day.

2. Make your green smoothie as complete as possible.

Make sure your green smoothie includes all the macronutrients you need: carbs, fat and protein. Most greens will provide you with carbs, avocado and coconut oil that are healthy fat sources, but be sure to check protein as well. Add a few raw eggs or – if you're a vegan – a vegetarian protein powder, such as hemp or brown rice.

Green Smoothie

3. Plan the rest of your meals carefully.

Green smoothie-only diets can be disastrous for your health. Once you've checked your green smoothie for the day, the rest of your meals should include “solid” foods. A day-by-day plan is the safest way to go. Stick to your normal dietary parameters. You can eat just about anything provided it's not junk food.

4. If you are not hungry, don’t eat.

If you are hungry in between meals, have a small snack. But if you are not, don't force yourself to eat just to stick to your meal plan.

5. Don’t rely on green smoothies alone for weight loss.

Green smoothies can help you lose weight, but, for enduring results, you need a long-term change in diet and lifestyle. Green smoothies should be part of a healthy diet and an overall healthier lifestyle.

Once you've drawn up your plan, here are some extra tips to help you make a healthy green smoothie.

Avocado Smoothie

How to Make a Green Smoothie

1. Don't use dairy products.

Don't think adding dairy products will boost your smoothie's nutritious content. Alongside calcium, milk and yogurt contain excess fat and hormones, which are hardly the things you need when you're on a weight loss diet. You can get plenty of calcium from fruit and vegetables.

2. Avoid  sweeteners.

For a truly healthy green smoothie, resist the temptation of adding agave syrup, honey or artificial sweeteners. For a sweeter taste without the extra calories, ripe bananas or dates should do the trick.

3. Avoid processed juices.

Processed drinks are packed with unhealthy additives. If you need to tame down the taste of greens, add freshly squashed fruit juice or homemade plant milk. You can easily make rice or coconut milk at home. All you need is a blender and a strainer.

4. No packaged foods.

For a truly healthy green smoothie, you should only use fresh fruits and greens, which have their full content of vitamins and nutrients. You can buy them in bulk and pack-freeze them yourself if you want to save some money.

Healthy Green Smoothies

5. Mix up your greens.

As miraculous as kale is, there are many other greens out there. Rotate your greens and don’t have any qualms about trying lesser known greens such as turnip and mustard.

6. Less powders in your smoothie.

While rice protein powder can make a healthy addition to a green smoothie, be wary of “superfoods”. Powders undergo a dehydration process and lose a lot of nutrients.

7. Healthy Green Smoothie Ratio

For a healthy green smoothie, a good fruits-to-greens ratio is 2 cups of fruit to 3 to 4 cups of greens (plus 1 cup of water). Be sure to add healthy fat and protein sources.

Green Smoothie Recipe:Banana-Raspberry Smoothie

For this delicious smoothie, you will need 1 cup raspberries, 1 medium banana, 3 cups fresh baby spinach, 2 teaspoons chia seeds (soaked for 20 minutes) and 4 to 6 oz of filtered water. Add all to your blender. Blend on high for 30 second or until creamy.

Remember: The secret to an effective green smoothie weight loss diet plan is balance. A balanced green smoothie diet, which includes all the right nutrients, can help you lose weight, detox and increase our energy.

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Photos: Thinkstock