There is no doubting the popularity of smoothies and juices in the world of nutrition. However, getting started may seem daunting if you aren’t prepared in terms of mixing certain fruits and veggies to produce a great tasting drink.
Smoothies containing green ingredients such as spinach, kale, Swiss chard, lettuce, celery, cucumber, parsley, cilantro, avocado, apples and dill may not seem that appealing, but the health benefits are nothing short of amazing. Consuming ample amounts of vegetables can boost your intake of vitamins, minerals and nutrients. According to the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics, smoothies are a great way to stay hydrated and introduce varied vegetables and fruits in one serving.
More benefits include:
- Fiber – by juicing the whole fruit, you get added fiber that extracted juices lack
- Variety – by juicing many varieties of fruits and vegetables, you can “hide” those that you don’t enjoy eating. For example, by mixing strong and mild flavors, you will taste the sweet apple instead of the bitter kale.
- Lower calories, more filling – juicing in the morning can provide loads of energy and satiation without eating a large portion at breakfast. It is easier to juice an apple, banana and orange rather than sitting down to eat all three separately.
- Absorption rate – smoothies and juices provide the nutrients straight to your body and the digestive system doesn’t have to work hard to break down the ingredients. You will feel the benefits quickly!
One the main formulas to follow as a beginner to green smoothies, is the 60/40 rule: 60 percent fruit and 40 percent veggies. This way it won’t be too bitter or earthy. Here are few green recipes provided by Victoria Boutenko, author of Green for Life:
- 1 mango
- 1 c. kale
- 1 c. water
Morning Zing Smoothie
- ½ bunch of dandelion greens (or other root greens)
- 2 stalks of celery
- ½ inch of fresh ginger root
- 2 peaches
- ½ pineapple
Rocket Fuel Smoothie
- 2 c. green seedless grapes
- 2 kiwis, peeled
- 1 ripe orange, peeled and seeded
- 1 small aloe vera leaf, with skin
- 5 leaves of red leaf lettuce
- 2 c. water
Favorite Dark Green Smoothie
- 1 bunch dandelion greens
- 4 Roma tomatoes
- 2 c. water
Emerald Applesauce – kid friendly!
4-5 green apples
1 bunch fresh parsley
½ inch fresh ginger root