A smoothie is a millennial's way of saying "I eat my greens". Jabs aside, smoothie mixes are an excellent way of getting a boatload of nutrients all at once - and if you make 'em right, they taste great too.
Obviously, you've got to be careful when it comes to loading your smoothie full of the good stuff - the calorie count can quickly add up. I try to stick to natural ingredients when I'm making my smoothies - no sugar loaded yoghurt here. Let's take a look at what I usually put in my smoothies, and then I'll reveal why this blog post about smoothies is a game changer:
Blueberries: the base to my smoothie mix is a generous handful of blueberries. They sit tight at the bottom and add a great colour to the mix when all is said and done. Plus, you know those antioxidants ain't going to be bad for you.
Spinach: this is where my greens come in. I always grab a couple of handfuls of spinach to squish down on top of the blueberries. Spinach is full of iron which is great for me right now because I'm breastfeeding. Another little known fact about spinach is that it helps to keep the weight off. Yep, spinach can make you feel fuller for longer and has a great caloric/nutrient ratio.
Apple: apple's keep it sweet, yet healthy.
Avocado: if these bad boys of health are in season, I love to chuck half or even a whole avocado into my smoothie mix. Avocado creates a wonderful creaminess to the texture that tips the smoothie game on its head completely.
Cinnamon: when you think of cinnamon, baking might come to mind first. However, while it's one of the sweetest spices on the planet, it's also one of the healthiest, too. Cinnamon is great for lowering your blood sugar levels. It's powerful antioxidants also help to fight fungal infections, and can even help to prevent cancer.
Pumpkin Seeds: because I want to emulate a granola bowl when I make a smoothie, I can't forget my seeds. Pumpkin seeds are one of nature's smallest powerhouses. Packed with nutrients, these pods of goodness work hard to prevent inflammation, give you a better sleep and provide your heart with all the magnesium it needs.
Once you've put all these together in a blender, just add a bit of water. The amount you add will depend on how thick you like your smoothies to be. If you've followed my incredibly rough guide on measurements, the best I can recommend is starting at about 500ml. Add more if you like your smoothie to be a bit thinner.
But wait. SECRET SMOOTHIE MIX INGREDIENT TIME.
There's another spice that's been around since the dawn of man that's sat on people's shelves everywhere for years, only to be handled in cases of attempts at culinary culture. However, it needs to be brought to the forefront of your spice rack and revered for the hero that it is.
Turmeric is what gets me up in the mornings. That's because it's one of the best nutritional chances I have of looking after my body every day.
Turmeric is anti-inflammatory. It also dramatically increases the body's ability to absorb antioxidants. It's linked to improved brain function and lowers your risk of heart disease. It prevents cancer and there's research to suggest it can help with depression.
Needless to say, you need turmeric in your diet. However, if you're not somebody who eats a lot of curries, this can be hard to accomplish. I struggled to find effective ways of getting it into my body - and then I put it in my smoothie mix.
You hardly taste it. It doesn't even change the colour of your smoothie.