I had an aha moment when I discovered the book, Green Smoothie Revolution by Victoria Boutenko. I had never thought of the idea of smoothies not having dairy as well as combining vegetables with fruit. Juicing definitely has it’s benefits but blending, now there was a concept! It was easier, less mess to clean up and I could keep all the fiber from the vegetables which my body needed while still having a yummy nutritious drink in the morning. This has been great to have on my long hour commute into work. A much better choice than what I used to have many years ago. The amount I make is enough for 2 smoothies. Sometimes I split it between myself and my husband. I’ll alter this recipe for my daughter with the fruits that she likes. I play around with different smoothie concoctions but this is generally the core of my smoothies.
Diana’s Basic Green Smoothie
1 cup coconut water or regular filtered water
1 banana (frozen if possible if not just add an ice cube to make it icy cold) ****helpful tip– peel the banana before you freeze it****
1 handful of dark leafy greens (whatever I have on hand such as spinach, kale, or dandelion greens)
Fruit that I have on hand- Usually strawberries, blueberries, blackberries and fresh cut pineapple (yes I buy a whole pineapple and take the time to cut it to have fresh pineapple). I use about a handful of each maybe a little more depending on which fruits I use. I also like to add mango or oranges when available just not a lot because of the sugar content in these fruits.
Optional things I add to my smoothie when I have them in the pantry: 1/2 teaspoon of Spirulina, 1/2 teaspoon of chia seeds, a few goji berries.
Put all items in blender and whiz away til thoroughly blended adding any additional fruit to meet your tastes. 🙂
*I use berries more in my smoothies because they are lower on the glycemic index and high in antioxidants.
So why the green stuff?
Leafy greens contain chlorophyll which is very beneficial for the human body. “Some of chlorophyll’s properties include renewing damaged tissue, building blood, counteracting the effects of radiation, knocking out harmful bacteria, facilitating in wound healing, increasing intestinal flora, improving liver function and gum health, and triggering enzymes that produce vitamins E, A & K.” – David Sandoval, The Green Foods Bible
Why Coconut Water?
“Young coconuts are one of the highest sources of electrolytes in nature. The molecular structure of coconut water is identical to human blood plasma, which means that it is immediately recognized by the body and put to good use.” Food Matters http://foodmatters.tv/Health_Resources/Super_Fruits_and_Nuts
What the heck is Spirulina?
“Spirulina is one form of blue-green algae, the planet’s most ancient form of plant life. Spirulina contains 10 times more beta-carotene than carrots. It also contains high concentrations of gamma-linoleic acid (GLA), an anti-inflammatory omega-6 fatty acid. The anti-inflammatory effects of GLA and phycocyanin, the blue-green pigment unique to blue-green algaes like spirulina, could explain why many people attest to spirulina’s ability to relieve joint pains and body aches. Users often report dramatic improvements in their energy levels.” – David Sandoval, The Green Foods Bible
Where do I buy Spirulina?
I buy the powder in bulk form from the health food store. They sell it in bulk by the ounce. It may seem a little pricey but a little goes a long way. Locally we have Richard’s and I get it there. You can also buy it online. I recycle old supplement jars and use them for bulk powders such as spirulina.
What are Chia Seeds?
“Chia is an edible seed that comes from the desert plant Salvia hispanica, a member of the mint family that grows abundantly in southern Mexico. Chia seeds also provide fiber (25 grams give you 6.9 grams of fiber) as well as calcium, phosphorus, magnesium, manganese, copper, iron, molybdenum, niacin, and zinc. Another advantage: when added to water and allowed to sit for 30 minutes, chia forms a gel. Researchers suggest that this reaction also takes place in the stomach, slowing the process by which digestive enzymes break down carbohydrates and convert them into sugar.”- Dr Andrew Weil http://www.drweil.com/drw/u/QAA365093/Chia-for-Health.html. They are also very high in Omega-3 fatty acids and antioxidants.
I look for good quality organic if possible Chia seeds usually found in the health food store. I purchased mine at Trader Joes.
What are Goji Berries?
“Goji berries are grown on vines in the protected valleys of inner Mongolia and Tibet. These distinctively flavoured red berries are a very rich source of vitamin C, having 500 times more vitamin C per ounce than oranges and actually more than any other fruit. They are a superb source of vitamins A, B1, B2, B6 and E and contain a full complement of protein with 18 amino acids and 21 trace minerals. Most of all they are an excellent antioxidant making it an ideal natural whole food for reversing aging and protecting against disease.” Food Matters http://foodmatters.tv/Health_Resources/Super_Fruits_and_Nuts