I often say don't drink your calories, but a nutrient dense smoothie is the ultimate exception! Smoothies make it easy to have a two or three servings of fruit and vegetables in one easy to drink, delicious glass! Especially at a time when we are advised to have at least 5-13 servings of fruit and veg daily and most of us are only getting 3 if you don't include potatoes.
As a Nutritionist, I recommend smoothies over juicing for a number of reasons. Firstly, when you juice you are removing the amazing fibre from the juice. While the juice is nutrient dense, you are at risk of spiking your insulin levels because there is nothing to slow the transit time of the juice through your system and you get a big sugar rush if using sugary fruits and vegetables. Secondly, it takes a large quantity of fruit and veg to make even a cup of juice which can be cost prohibitive and wasteful.
I also have to caution against the idea that the smoothie that you are purchasing from a place like McDonalds's is all that good for you. Their ingredient list consists of concentrated, demineralized, clarified juices (which have been heated, hence losing some of their nutrition), sugar, thickeners, colors and unpronounceable chemicals like dimethylpolysiloxane. Yikes!
I start my day with a green smoothie every morning and build around it. While the green can take some getting used to you quickly acquire a taste for it and there are some combinations that are more delicious than others!
Green leafy vegetables are an important part of our diet and unless you are eating salads regularly, you probably aren't getting enough of them. Greens contain a multitude of vitamins, minerals, phytochemicals and antioxidants. They have an alkalanizing effect in the human body, help maintain our immune systems, and are good for our gallbladder, spleen, heart, blood and bones.
This morning's smoothie was a Pina Colada Smoothie and the recipe is as follows:
Pina Colada Smoothie
- 2 frozen bananas
- 2 cups of pineapple, cubed
- 1 Tbsp of coconut (Artisana, creamed coconut flesh)
- 4 leaves of romaine lettuce
- water to thin (1 to 1 1/2 cups)
Throw all ingredients in your blender, and blend until smooth. Serves 2. Enjoy!