Why Do We Need a Blender?
After bariatric surgery our stomach is much like an infant’s. While it’s healing we need to start from the beginning to learn how to eat. We are placed on special nutrition plans by our surgeons and nutritionists. The plans vary from surgeon to surgeon, but some things are certain: everyone has some sort of liquid diet immediately after surgery. The we progress to pureed foods, soft foods and finally we start adding regular food. We mix things with protein powder, crush ice and sometimes rely on smoothies.
It is important to have a blender, but which kind? It depends on individual preference. But there are plenty of differences to consider. I have researched the heck out of this issue, talked to tens of people, purchased more than one type and have used the beautiful pricey ones owned by friends and family. Here is what I have found:
- The Ninja – I had one and I liked it.
- Magic Bullet – I have one and I like it, but when I need to replace it I will buy a Nutribullet.
- Vitamix/Blendtec – Expensive and worth every penny. I didn’t own one when I first wrote this, but I now have a Blendtec and it is a game changer! The clear winner for smoothies.
Regular blenders work okay for blending protein powder, but they don’t work for smoothies and they don’t puree many foods well. The best on the consumer market (by far) are Blendtec and Vitamix. Their prices reflect the quality.
Vitamix and Blendtec are tied as the top of consumer smoothie blenders. They rival many of the powerful commercial blenders that cost thousands of dollars. These are the only consumer blenders that do the job of pulverizing everything down to a smooth consistency. There are no little chunks of kale left in your green smoothie, or seeds from fruits and veggies.
They are durable, last years (usually decades) and owners are practically giddy using them. Ask someone who owns one what they think about their Vitamix or Blendtec and you are likely to hear a description as glowing as if it were their child about to enter a gifted program.
They are pricey, but worth every penny if your budget can handle one. My budget didn’t make room for one, but I admit to getting a teensy bit envious when my sister makes a me a green smoothie with her Blendtec. Green smoothies are the ultimate test for me and hers are perfect.
UPDATE: I now have a Blendtec and it is far and above the less expensive brands for smoothies. If it weren’t for smoothies, I would have been okay with the Ninja. To me, it is well worth the price.
If you live in the real world and need to find more affordable option there are some good ones, but there is a noticeable difference in quality and durability. Some dealers offer significant discounts for refurbished Vitamix and Blendtec blenders.
Search for a better deal on refurbished Blendtec Blenders on Amazon
Search for a better deal on a refurbished Vitamix blenders on Amazon
Standard blenders range in price from $20 to $100 or so. They don’t make good smoothies. They aren’t built to pulverize the greens or puree anything other than soft foods. If you like to chew your green or fruit smoothie, then maybe you won’t mind.
Most of the bariatric patients who have standard blenders say they don’t use them. I’ve talked to several people who later invested in the fancy ones or purchased a specialty blender. A standard blender is certainly better than nothing, but there are better specialty blenders that will fit in the budget.
There are many standard blenders to choose from, some better than others. For people still convinced the standard blender is the best choice, I recommend reading the features and reviews on Amazon or at a local retailer.
After spending way too much time researching this purchase I bought a Ninja.
The Ninja has served me well for the year or so I have used it. It is well made, does a good job pureeing food and making smoothies. It does not pulverize berry seeds or greens. There will be small pieces of kale floating in your green smoothie, but overall it does a pretty darned good job. I’ve used the heck out of it and it hasn’t let me down yet.
Ninja replicates many of the features of top level products and it sells for about a quarter of the price.
Nutribullet vs. Magic BulletIf the budget allows for a purchase of only one blender of less than $100, one of these will be the winner. Bariatric patients mostly need to blend things in small quantities. Cleaning out a giant blender after every protein shake is a pain.
The Nutribullet does a better job of breaking down pieces. Has a bigger motor which does a better job of crushing ice and reducing greens and fruits for smoothies.
The Magic Bullet is significantly less expensive, does a good job. I use mine several times a week. For budget personal blender, this is a good choice.
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