One of my all time favourite ways to start the day is with a refreshing fruit and vegetable smoothie. Not only do smoothies give you a burst of energy first thing in the morning, they’re also an excellent way of fueling your body with good nutrients. Depending on what goes in, it can provide you with a daily dose of fiber, anti oxidents, vitamins, calcium, protein, and healthy fats. By blending everything together, it makes it so that nutrients are more easily digested and absorbed into the body – another big plus.
In this article, I will be giving you one of my favourite smoothie recipes as well as 3 ingredients you don’t want to miss out on.
First up, here’s a 100% raw & lactose free smoothie that is packed full of raw, organic, fruits and superfoods! (pictured above) Combining the rich, energy boosting antioxidents of goji berries, natural sweetness of pears, and anti-aging digestive enzymes of papayas, protein/essential fatty acids from hemp seeds, and energy/immune system boosting qualities of coconut oil, this shake is an excellent start to the day and also great as a post workout treat.
Ingredients – makes 1-2 servings:
1 small/medium sized papaya (peeled)
2 tsp goji berries
1 large Asian pear (with skin)
6oz almond milk
1 tsp shelled hemp seeds
2 tsp organic virgin coconut oil
crushed ice (optional)
1. Cut the papaya and pear into chunks.
2. Soak the goji berries in hot water for a minute.
3. Add all ingredients into the blender. If you like your smoothies cold, add some crushed ice or freeze/refrigerate your fruits ahead of time
Here are 3 highly beneficial ingredients that I think everyone should add to their smoothies.
Virgin Coconut Oil
This is one of my favourite additions to any smoothie. Coconut oil is one of the healthiest oils you can consume. Once mistakenly thought to be bad because of its saturated fat content, coconut oil is now known to contain a unique form of saturated fat that has been shown to help strengthen immune system function, improve digestion, prevent heart disease, and even lower cholesterol levels. It is saturated in healthy fats that actually promote weight loss and help speed up the body’s metabolism. Research shows that some saturated fat is necessary for human health and that the medium chain fatty acids help to increase metabolism and are more easily digested than fats found in other oils. These fatty acids do not circulate in the bloodstream like other fats, so are processed directly in the liver and immediately converted into energy, just like carbohydrates (not stored as body fat). When you buy coconut oil, make sure the oil, which comes in a solid state is white and comes in a glass jar. When melted, it is clear. Recommended brand: Virgin Coconut Oil by Bali Sun
Shelled hemp seeds are extremely healthy and have a concentrated source of easily digested protein, essential fatty acids, vitamins, and enzymes. They will give your smoothie a nice texture and nutty taste. Shelled hemp seeds have been cultivated for thousands of years and hold many benefits. Shelled hemp seeds are high in fiber and protein, and contain amino and fatty (Omega 3 & 6) acids your body needs. They contain Gamma Linolenic Acid (GLA), a unique and highly beneficial Omega-6 that’s known for its powerful anti-inflammatory properties and aids in hormone synthesis and balance, premenstrual health, blood pressure maintenance, weight loss, healthy joint function, strong hair follicles, bright skin and strong nails, and provides continuous energy throughout the day. They can be purchased online or in any health food store. It is best to buy the certified organic ones, as they are grown without any chemical pesticides, herbicides or chemical fertilizers. Recommended brand: Certified Organic Hempseeds by Nutiva
Goji berries are known as the fruit of longevity and well-being. This superfood has a 1900 year history of use in traditional Chinese medicine, and has been prized for its anti-aging properties and immune system boosting capabilities. They are among the highest known source of antioxidents and amino acids, carotenoids, iron, and vitamin C. Goji berries will assist with weight loss, normalize your blood pressure and blood sugar levels, lower cholesterol, and promote happiness due to their superior adaptogenic properties. Regular consumption of goji berries will boost the immune system and increases the longevity of a person. Goji berries contain 15 times more iron than spinach and 500 times more vitamin C per ounce than oranges. They can be eaten raw or cooked and are a tasty addition to smoothies, tea, soup and hot cereals.
For more tips, keep reading my blog and watch for my smoothie e-book, which will be coming out this summer.