Do you like to drink your greens?
Maybe you are a green juice junkie and cannot wait to get your hands on the latest and greatest $400.00 juicer. Maybe you are looking to get into the habit of including fresh smoothies in your wellness routine. Maybe you are new to the concept of drinking your fruits and vegetables altogether. Whatever your position, there is no doubt that the benefits you get from juicing or blending organic produce can play an important role in your healthy lifestyle.
Juicing extracts only the water and nutrients from produce and discards the fiber. Since your body does not need to process the indigestible fiber nutrients get released into your blood stream very rapidly and give you a quick boost of energy. However, be careful not to juice only fruits to avoid a blood sugar spike!
When you make a smoothie, you blend the entire fruit or vegetable which preserves the fiber. Fiber slows the digestive process and nutrients get released into your blood stream more steadily. Blending may not be the right choice for those whose bodies have a hard time processing fiber.
I prefer smoothies over juices because A) I do not have a juicer B) I like that smoothies make you feel fuller longer. They make for an excellent breakfast on the go or an afternoon snack when you need a healthy alternative to your second daily dose of caffeine.
Here is my go-to smoothie recipe concocted by yours truly. This recipe is not an exact science and it mostly changes with whatever I have available in my fridge. In general, though, it goes like this:
- 2 cups mixed leafy greens (kale, spinach, chard, romaine lettuce)
- 1 cup of mixed frozen berries
- 1/2 ripe banana
- 1 cup organic milk or almond milk
- 1/4-1/2 cup Greek yogurt for added creaminess (if you cannot tolerate dairy, avocado or almond butter works, too)
- 1 tablespoon chia seeds or milled flaxseed
- Organic maple syrup or raw honey to taste
- Blend like madness
- Pour into this bad boy
- Enjoy and go on with your gorgeous healthy self!
- You (or your kids!) would never know that you are drinking kale. This smoothie turns out a beautiful purple color, tastes like a little sweet treat and is totally refreshing.
- I like to use organic baby spinach or baby kale as they are already washed and ready to use – no preparation needed. If I have other greens like parsley floating around I sometimes throw them in for good measure.
- I keep a big bag of frozen organic berries from Costco in the freezer. I also use them in a lot of other dishes like the yogurt I make for my kids.
- Chia seeds or milled flaxseed are great sources of healthy omega-3 fatty acids. You can add them to pretty much anything you make at home – granola, cereal bars, pancakes, salads. Always keep some in your pantry!