So this is the first One Step Closer to Healthy post of 2014. If you are new to the blog this series of posts are led by nutritional content, healthy inspiration, tips and guides to help you feel great. These posts go live on the blog every Monday. For those of you who are catching up you can read my past posts here.
With the new year well and truly in full spring, the majority of us want to kick start our healthy living. To balance out all of the Christmas indulgences I have increased my intake of green smoothies. Regular readers of the blog will know how much I love these things. Those of you who aren’t in the know about green smoothies then by the end of this post you will be wanting to dust off your blenders.
Smoothies have been on the tips of the tongues of many nutritionists for years, advocating them as a healthy snack or breakfast. They are usually made up of fruit with yoghurt or milk, or just a basic protein smoothie. Green smoothies however take it one step further and are packed with green earthy vegetables, meaning that they are bursting with a multitude of vitamin and minerals for your body.
The benefits of these green wonders are endless:
Increased intake of fruit and vegetables
A boost of antioxidants
Improved energy levels
High in fibre
Fast absorption of nutrients
Improved well being
Balances the bodies pH levels
Detoxifies the body
Contains a high level of chlorophyll
Eating good quality sourced vegetables is essential for anybody that is looking to improve their general health. Typically we all should be eating five portions of fruit a day. The Alkaline Diet promotes the digestion of high alkaline leafy vegetables such as spinach and kale. These particular vegetables help ward off any health problems that may be caused by a diet of high acidic levels, characteristic of a western diet. Green smoothies instill a general feeling of well-being and have been associated with alleviating depression and allegedly aid weight loss.
Since all of the contents of the smoothie are blended, the cells of the plants are broken down which makes it easier for the digestive system to process. Also, there is an enhanced assimilation of vitamins and minerals. Blending up the vegetables and fruit allows the body to absorb the nutrients a lot faster if you were to chew them. The high levels of chlorophyll in the green smoothies helps to boost your immune response.
Don’t be scared by the fact they are green. There are so many different varieties and possibilities that you can create. To start off with perhaps try a simple spinach, banana, peanut butter and almond milk smoothie. If you like that, you can begin to get more experimental by changing up the greens (kale, cavolo nero, lettuce) and you can also add things like superfood powders (maca, spirulina, lucuma, camu camu berry powder), different nut butters and protein powders to make them more satisfying. I like to eat my smoothies in a bowl so that I can sprinkle them with different toppings and sometimes have them on the go on the way to work. So go get in your green smoothie labs and get experimenting. I assure you that you will not be disappointed.
To get you on your green smoothie way I have included a little recipe in this post:
- 1/2 banana
- 1 chopped apple
- 3 handfuls of spinach
- 2 cups of almond milk
- 1 scoop of butterscotch protein powder (I used Protein Works)
Throw everything in a blender and blitz. Serve in a bowl and add your favourite toppings or drink straight up from a glass.
Please check out my recipe page for more green smoothie inspiration. It would be great if you posted photos of your green smoothies to Facebook or Twitter so that I can see your amazing creations.
If you have any questions then please get in touch at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Have you tried a green smoothie before? What did you think?
What are your favourite things to put in your smoothies?