Build A Better Smoothie

SmoothiesRainbow In the crazy healthy life, smoothies are an efficient, cost-effective, and delicious way to increase nutrient intake. Breakfast smoothies, in particular, are a powerful opportunity to flood our body with a broad spectrum of vitamins, minerals, protein, healthy fats, and phytonutrients, as we prepare to start our day. Crazy healthy smoothies do not need ice, sweeteners, chocolate, or dairy. Just a little frozen fruit and veggies, nutrient-dense liquid, healthy fats, and some power foods. The best part is that, when you consider smoothies from a nutrient-density perspective, the possibilities are endless. To make a smoothie, I pick from a menu of health-promoting whole foods:

Sweet and Sour Juices: Personally, I prefer orange, pineapple, apple, or pear juice as a base. You can also add splashes of stronger juices such as pure pomegranate, carrot, cranberry, beet, lemon, or cherry. Dairy is a no-no because it is inflammatory, and creates mucus and digestive issues in the body.

Frozen fruit: Organic is best, if you can find it. It is more expensive, so I just use what is available and affordable when I shop. Mixed berries are a staple in our house, but we also love frozen mango, peaches, and cherries.

Veggies: A little spinach, carrots, beets, broccoli, or kale will barely change the flavor of your smoothie, and will significantly increase its nutrient density. Start with the milder tasting veggies, such as spinach, and work your way up to stronger-tasting foods. A handful is usually sufficient.

Protein: Non-animal protein is helpful for adrenal support, and is especially important first thing in the morning. It also helps balance blood sugar levels in the body. I like rice protein powder, but you may use 1-2 T organic peanut butter or almond butter as an alternative.

Healthy fat: Contrary to what some of today’s popular diets preach, a little healthy fat goes a long way. Coconut oil, for example, is anti-inflammatory, and immunity boosting. Avocado is rich in phytonutrients, adds a creamy texture, and is tasteless in smoothies. This makes it a good alternative to dairy. You don’t need much of either, maybe a tablespoon or two max. 

Optional:

Omega 3s: Essential for building brain cells, and many other bodily functions. Chia seeds or flax seeds are rich in Omega 3s, and can be added to smoothies.

Fresh Ginger: Excellent for digestion, and a delicious complement to  fruits and veggies.

With a little forethought, smoothies can fuel our body with the most nutritious and energizing foods. Below are a few combinations to help you create some crazy healthy smoothies of your own. Give them a try, or create some on your own. When you find one that you love, please share it with the rest of us! Here are a few of my favorites:

Sweet Fruit Punch: Orange juice, raspberries, mango, cherries, peaches, spinach, unflavored rice powder, coconut oil

Chocolate Monkey: Chocolate almond milk, banana, peanut butter, avocado, chia seeds, chocolate rice powder

Spicy Fruit Punch: Orange juice, pear juice, mixed berries, cherries, broccoli, coconut oil, ginger, flax seeds

Pomegranate Punch: Pineapple juice, blueberries, pomegranate juice, kale, unflavored rice power, coconut oil

Rice-Protein-Chocolate-22.9-oz

Smoothie photo: http://www.gimmesomeoven.com

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3 thoughts on “Build A Better Smoothie

  1. Misty Alexander says:

    Just got a juicer, so I’m “crazy healthy” over it these days. I’m finding it all the more beneficial as I fight bronchitis this week and any other little bugs my six year old students pass around. I have caught on to the “roughie” craze- rather than smoothie. A “roughie” in the juicing world means to use the leftover pulp (full of fiber and nutrients) from your fruits and veggies with the juice created to create soups, breads, puddings and well- smoothies. My favorite roughie is to juice a few organic apples (about a cup of apple juice), a stalk of celery or other handful of favorite greens, and about a half inch piece of ginger. All this goes through juicer and then straight to blender with some of the pulp. Blend with two frozen bananas, a little almond milk or almonds, cinnamon and honey as desired. I throw in flax seed at times too. This is actually good warmed up just a tad for a chilly evening. Of course if you don’t have a juicer, have the luxury of owning a Vitamix, or don’t want the multiple steps- just use your favorite organic apple juice. I bought a juicer as a impulse and it’s the best impulse buy I’ve ever made! Gives the flavor a whole new level and it’s incredibly nutrient dense! Thanks for your great suggestions- I’m planning to try them soon!

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  2. Great insight, Misty! Thanks for sharing these tips. I haven’t done much juicing, but will definitely keep these ideas in mind for future reference. Hope you feel better soon!

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