Green Smoothies

 
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GREEN SMOOTHIE INDEX:  (please scroll down to read articles)
  • Blueberry Orange GS
  • Coconut Orange GS
  • Cranberry Nettle GS
  • Post Workout Recovery Drink
  • Green smoothie Guidelines
  • Double Orange GS
  • Mango Kiwi Kale GS
  • 4-Day GSC
  • Juice Bar Smoothies
  • Purple Power GS
  • Gratitude GS
  • Juicing vs. Blending
  • Feed your Plants GS
  • Soluble Fibre vs. Insoluble Fibre in GS
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Blueberry Orange GS - November 3, 2013
 
2 cups young Thai coconut water
1/2 large bunch Beet Greens
1 cup blueberries, frozen
1 orange, peeled and seeded
1/4 tsp Turmeric powder
 
  • Place all ingredients into a blender and blend until smooth
  • You'll want to try this GS for its mellow yet fully developed flavours

Nutri-Tip:
  • Blueberries have sky high levels of antioxidants, which combat the damage done by inflammation. And new research indicates that blueberries might protect the heart muscle from damage.
  • Beet Greens contain vitamin K for blood clotting, and vitamin A for maintenance of good vision and strengthening the immune system.
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Coconut Orange GS - October 22, 2013


If you are looking for a light mellow Green Smoothie with a refreshing citrus flavour - this is it!.
Coconut Orange GS
Yield: 1 quart

2 cups young Thai coconut water
Meat from 1 young Thai coconut
2 oranges, peeled and seeded
1/4 tsp Turmeric powder
3/4 cups Spinach, steamed (see below)
  • Blend all together in a high-speed blender
  • If your regular blender will not puree the orange, use fresh squeezed orange juice
 


Raw vs. Steamed Spinach:
  • Spinach contains goitrogens (foods that can interfere with thyroid function)
  • If you are hypothyroid and this is of concern to you, steaming or cooking reduces the goitrogenic compounds
Nutri-Tip:
  • Young Thai coconut water and meat, containing soluble fibre, soaks up water and forms a gel which can help slow down digestion
  • Coconut water is very beneficial for replacing fluid loss and can replenish the electrolyte composition in body fluids
  • Did you know that during World War II doctors used the water in young coconuts for blood plasma? They discovered it is sterile, cool, easily absorbed by the body, and doesn't destroy red blood cells.
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Cranberry Nettle GS - October 21, 2013

There has been a second growth of Stinging Nettles in my wild edibles garden, so I am making the most of this unexpected harvest for as long as possible. And this month I stocked my freezer with bags of ORGANIC Cranberries that I found in the produce aisle of my local Safeway grocery store - a new addition to my Green Smoothies that I am really enjoying! 
 

Cranberry Nettle GS

Yield: 1 quart


2 cups purified water
1 cup Stinging Nettle leaves
1 cup whole cranberries, fresh or frozen
2 bananas, peeled
  • Add all ingredients to a blender and blend together until smooth
Nutri-Tip:
  • Stinging Nettle is more nutritious than most greens in the store. "Compared to spinach it has 29x the amount of calcium, 14x the amount of iron, 8 x the amount of magnesium, and 4x the amount of potassium." Courtesy of Victoria Boutenko 
  • You can also enjoy the anti-cancer benefits from dried nettle (or dandelion greens) in the form of tea. Add one Tbsp herb per cup hot water and steep 15 minutes.
  • Be aware that because Stinging Nettle may affect the blood's ability to clot it could interfere with blood thinning drugs


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Post Workout Recovery Drink - July 23, 2013
 
Every day is another opportunity to feel good, and after an exercise workout it never fails to surprise me how alive and energized I feel. No longer do I wonder at the benefits of a lifestyle that includes raw vegan food, daily exercise, and time in nature.

What I have learned is that after a workout the body needs to replenish nutrients, vitamins and minerals burned off during exercise. My choice is to refuel the body naturally . . . without the use of supplements, additives, or powders!

So what to drink before and after a workout? A Green Smoothie is fast and easy to make. Simply combine fresh organic leafy greens, organic whole fruits, and purified water together in a blender. The organic dark leafy greens and fresh whole fruits replenish amino acids (protein) and these essential nutrients: calcium, iron, magnesium, potassium, selenium, sodium, and zinc.

Before:  Drinking a Green Smoothie a half an hour or more before a workout can provide endurance and stamina for a long run. Since I am not going for a run this morning my pre workout drink was 1 Tbsp apple cider vinegar and 1 Tbsp unpasteurized honey in 15 ounces purified water. This balances the pH level in my body while helping build the hydrochloric stomach acid necessary for the digestion and assimilation of food.

After:   Athletes recommend refueling the body within 1/2 hour to 45 minutes after a workout. A Green Smoothie with proteins and minerals from plant based chlorophyll rich greens, and carbohydrates from easily digestible whole fruit, will speed the body's recovery - here is the recipe for today's Post Workout Green Smoothie.

Post Workout GS  
2-3 cups purified water
1/2 avocado, peeled and seeded
3 large celery stalks, with leafy tops
1 cup blueberries, frozen
1 banana, peeled
1 Bosc pear, stem removed
1 Tbsp Dulse flakes
  • Place all ingredients into a blender (mine is a Vitamix)
  • Blend until thick, smooth and creamy
  • If the Green smoothie is too thick, add more purified water
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Green Smoothie Guidelines - February 22, 2013
 
When starting out anything new, it helps to know the basics. These guidelines from Victoria Boutenko were my initiation into green smoothies and I still follow them today. Here is an excerpt from the book ‘Green Smoothie Revolution’.

Victoria Boutenko:  "To help people receive the most benefits from drinking green smoothies and to avoid some typical mistakes, I have created the following guidelines:
  • Prepare your green smoothie first thing in the morning in the amount that you usually consume in one day, one or two quarts (litres). Pour enough smoothie in a glass for your morning enjoyment and keep the rest in a refrigerator or another cold place.
  • Sip your green smoothie slowly, mixing it with saliva. Sometimes I put my smoothie in a coffee mug with a lid and carry it with me to the car or to my office. That way I minimize a chance of spilling it and keep it private without distracting others.
  • Don’t add anything to your smoothie except greens, fruit, and water. I don’t recommend adding nuts, seeds, oils, supplements or other ingredients to your green smoothie. Most of these items slow down the assimilation of green smoothies in your digestive tract and may cause irritation and gas. I encourage you to stick to the basic green smoothie recipe (fruit, greens, and water) in your daily routine.
  • Drink your smoothie by itself, and not as a part of a meal. Don’t consume anything, even as little as a cracker or candy with it. You may eat anything you want approximately 40 minutes before or 40 minutes after you finished your smoothie. Your goal is to get the most nutritional benefit out of your green smoothie.
  • Do not add starchy vegetables such as carrots, beets, broccoli stems, zucchini, cauliflower, cabbage, Brussels sprouts, egg plant, pumpkin, squash, okra, peas, corn, green beans, and others to your green smoothies. Starchy vegetables combine poorly with fruit and may produce what my children call “gas 4 less.”
  • Don’t add too many ingredients into one smoothie, such as nine different fruits and a dozen different greens. Try to keep most of your recipes simple to maximize nutritional benefits and to keep it easy on your digestive system.
  • Learn to prepare a really delicious green smoothie so that you are always looking forward to the next one. If your drink is not tasty, you will eventually discontinue consuming it. Keep your taste buds happy.
  • Always rotate the green leaves that you add to your smoothies. Almost all greens in the world contain minute amounts of alkaloids. Tiny quantities of alkaloids cannot hurt you, and even strengthen the immune system. However, if you keep consuming kale, or spinach, or any other single green for many weeks without rotation, eventually the same type of alkaloids can accumulate in your body and cause unwanted symptoms of poisoning. Please note that you don’t have to rotate the fruit in your green smoothies. Most commonly used fruit have very little or none of the alkaloids and cannot cause the same toxic reactions as greens. At the same time, rotating fruits will enhance the variety of flavour and nutrition in your smoothies.
  • Choose organic produce whenever possible. The absence of pesticides and other toxic chemicals is only one of many benefits of organic food. The most important reason to consume organic food is the superior nutrition of organic fruits and vegetables in comparison to conventionally grown produce. We have been discussing earlier, how deficient most people are. The best way to nourish your body is to consume organic produce and whenever possible, locally grown. I consider it very important to get the fruit that was allowed to ripen on the vine because it is the best for nourishment. Tree-ripened fruit is several times more nutritious and when consumed shortly after picking retains significantly more nutrients."
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Double Orange GS - April 14, 2012
2 cups water
2 oranges, peeled and seeded
1 banana, peeled
1 cup Alfalfa sprouts
1 large handful Spinach
1 large chunk Ginger, peeled
1-1/2 Tbsp Chia seeds
  • Adding the water, oranges, and banana to the blender first makes for easier blending if you are using a regular blender - I use a Vitamix
  • To this liquid blend, add the sprouts, spinach and ginger, and blend again until smooth and creamy
  • Add Chia seeds last and only blend for a few seconds
  • Let GS sit in blender for 5-10 minutes while the Chia seeds absorb liquid and swell up to thicken the GS
  • If blended on high speed, the Chia seeds will break into a grit that catches in your throat 
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Mango Kiwi Kale GS - April 8, 2012
 2 cups water
1 large Ataulfo Mango, peeled and seeded
1 banana, peeled
2 Kiwi fruit, peeled
Splash of fresh lemon juice
4 Kale leaves


  • Add first 5 ingredients to blender, blending into a liquid
  • Remove and discard centre stem from Kale leaves - add remaining leaves to blender
  • Blend all together until smooth
  • The GS will be nice and thick - you can always add water to thin it out
  • Fresh lemon juice counters too green a flavour - so always taste test and add more as needed
  • This was made in a Vitamix blender which gives a velvety texture
  • If using a regular blender some Kale bits may remain, try blending longer 
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4-Day Green Smoothie Challenge - May 20, 2012

You have most likely heard of people doing a detox or a fast -to clean out the body and get rid of toxins. Well here is a different twist on that theme!

My way is to feed and refuel my body while refreshing my senses by taking a few days off from food and just drinking Green Smoothie blender drinks.

I never feel deprived because drinking an entire blender containing all the fibre from the fruit and greens is very filling. And as this abundance of organic nutrient-dense dark leafy greens, fruits, and water is slowly assimilated - the body receives what it needs to do its job without stress or interference.

During these 4 days, I am ONLY drinking Green Smoothies and eating fruit! YOU'RE WELCOME TO JOIN ME!

4-DAY GSC - Thursday May 24 thru Sunday May 27:

  • Regenerate, Reactivate, and Restore the body, mind, and spirit NOW!
  • Allow yourself this time to disconnect from cable TV, newspapers, radio, outside opinions, and material things
  • Connect with nature, feel the movement of energy, the Universe within, and what is truly important to you
  • Get rid of brain fog and discover clarity. (By the way, my current tools of inspiration are Breaking the Habit of Being Yourself - Doctor Joe Dispenza, and Essence - Don Campbell.)
  • Allow the digestive system to receive a well deserved rest. Since drinking a blended drink requires much less energy - more energy is now available for regeneration!
4-DAY GSC - How To:
  • A basic Green Smoothie is usually 60% organic fruit, 40% organic dark leafy greens (no starchy vegetables or additives), and 2 cups water (or young Thai coconut water) mixed together in a blender. You will find recipes on this blog to get you started.
  • Be aware that combining starchy vegetables with fruits can cause gas in the intestines - so do not use root vegetables. Dark leafy greens are the only food group that helps digest other foods through stimulating the secretion of digestive enzymes - so greens can be combined with any other foods.
  • And if you are not used to consuming large quantities of raw organic fruit and dark leafy greens, it is possible you may feel worse to begin with - which is a good sign that your body is doing some house cleaning!
  • From May 24 to May 27, drink as many blenders full of Green Smoothie as you want, and supplement by eating fresh fruit only, that is if you feel the need
  • Each day I will post my Green Smoothie recipes, let you know how I am feeling, and share new awarenesses as they come
  • Final note to consider: Instead of relying on the words of others (myself included), why not have your own personal experience of Green Smoothies with this Challenge? Join me starting Thursday May 24 - pay close attention to how your body responds - and discover if drinking Green Smoothies is the right fit for you!
  • Questions? Need support? Want to share your recipes or experiences? 
  • Email  ezrawliving@gmail.com   to contact me
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Juice Bar Smoothies - July 1, 2011

With the overwhelming variety of options presented to customers at a juice or smoothie bar, how do you know which smoothie is the right fit for you?

Ask Questions! What exactly is in the additives and what are they designed (or processed) specifically for? Are the ingredients Organic? Is the produce locally sourced? Consider special dietary needs:  Is it dairy-free? Is it nut-free? Do any of the additives contain wheat or gluten? Is it made from truly raw plant-based foods?

Menus may include:  fruit smoothies (usually combinations of frozen fruit, ice and optional powders); Green Smoothies (or some version of fruit with green powders added); and then there is the addition of milk (which could be dairy); coconut milk or coconut water as a base; protein shakes (powders and additives); and of course booster drinks (super foods, maca, etc).

What about pure, simple, delicious Green Smoothies? Smoothie bars may offer only minimal advice about the benefits of doing it the natural way, and one of the best people I know to keep you well informed is Victoria Boutenko  http://www.rawfamily.com/  I hope you will tour her website, which is an excellent source on the healing benefits of greens in our diet.

You can always ask for a natural super Green Smoothie with wheatgrass, mango, bananas and water. How about trying dandelion greens, cucumber and water, or broccoli sprouts, blackberries and water? And have you ever considered adding kale, carrot tops, beet greens, cilantro, sprouts, or miner's lettuce in combination with different fresh or frozen fruits and water? These are all powerhouse drinks that will energize you.

While fruit smoothies can be light, delicious and refreshing, savory Green Smoothies can be prepared from greens and non starchy vegetables like tomatoes, cucumbers, celery, bell peppers, etc. If you want your Green Smoothie to be less sweet, start by adding low-glycemic index fruit such as berries and apples.

Nutrient dense! We can get plenty of phytonutrients, protein, vitamins, and minerals from fresh greens. One pound of kale contains more protein than the USDA daily recommendation. And while adding green powders may be better than eating French fries, powders are still a processed food (where the nutritional content may be altered in the process). Try consuming large quantities of fresh Organic greens and fresh Organic fruits for optimal health benefits.

My journey with Green Smoothies began with the expensive route of adding protein powder, maca, flax oil, super foods, etc. But I began noticing extra energy as I gradually evolved into making pure Green Smoothies with no additives (other than Chia seeds for Omega-3). Finally - a blender drink combination that was easy to digest, without additives, nuts, seeds or oils - that made me feel ohhh so good! 

The bottom line is that you must have your own experience - what is right for one is not right for all! So try each version of a Green Smoothie for at least a week, and pay close attention to what your body is telling you.

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Purple Power GS - January 5, 2011

How about starting off the New Year by drinking a blender of nutritious Green Smoothie every day? Green Smoothies are easy to make, and quick to clean up after. To prepare a blender of Green Smoothie takes less than 5 minutes, including cleaning.


Purple Power GS

2 cups water
1/2 bunch organic kale, stems removed
1 large organic orange, peeled and seeded
1 large organic banana, peeled
1-1/2 cups organic blueberries

  • Blend ingredients in a high speed blender and enjoy!
  • When using about 60% ripe Organic fruit mixed with about 40% Organic greens, the fruit taste dominates the flavour, yet at the same time the greens balance out the sweetness of the fruit.
Nutri-Tips:
  • Spinach, kale, and Swiss chard are an excellent source of iron (especially important for women), vitamin A, and Lutein for eye health. Best of all you know those omega-3s everyone's talking about? They reside in dark greens (including seaweed, which is why they're concentrated in fish).
  • Blueberries have sky-high levels of antioxidants, which combat the damage done by inflammation. Anthocyanins, the natural plant compounds that give blueberries their deep colour, may have anti diabetic effects as well. And new research suggests blueberries might protect the heart muscle from damage.
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Gratitude GS - August 6, 2010

I really enjoyed the wild edibles walk on Aug 15 with Karl Hann of Biota Farm who shared so much information with us about growing food on a bio-dynamic farm. Among the 'wild greens' I brought home was some Chickweed (shown in picture) which grows in abundance, so maybe you already have some growing on your property!



Gratitude GS
2 cups water
4 kale leaves
1/2 bunch beet greens
1/2 bunch chard
handful of chickweed
1/2" piece ginger
10 small yellow plums
1 cup blueberries/blackberries mix


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Juicing vs. Blending - February 20, 2010

One difference between using a juicer or using a blender is that the juice contains no fibre. Therefore when the body has a hard time digesting the fibre in food, juicing is a way to slowly introduce the much needed nutrients.

Juicing can contribute to health in specific situations such as a severely weakened immune system. If you notice digestion is a problem as you are transitioning to raw food you may want to try this:  drink one or more glasses of juice each day for 2 weeks - then switch to drinking Green Smoothies once a day for the next 2 weeks.

Become aware of how your body feels during this 4 week period. Allow your body time to adjust while the assimilation of nutrients from juicing takes place, and notice how you feel as the intake of fibre from Green Smoothies begins to eliminate toxic waste accumulations.


JUICING - Be aware that combining starchy vegetables with fruits can cause gas in the intestines - personally the only fruit I add when juicing is an apple.

Carrot Juice
5 medium carrots
- Juice through a juicer - simple! Serves 1.

Carrot Beet Ginger Juice
3-4 medium carrots
1/4 to 1/2 beet, sliced (begin with less)
1/2 to 1" slice of ginger
1 small clove garlic (optional)
- Juice together in a juicer and enjoy. Serves 1.


GREEN SMOOTHIE - Dark leafy greens are the only food group that helps digest other foods through stimulating the secretion of digestive enzymes - so greens can be combined with any other foods!

Blue-Green Aloe GS
2 cups water
1 head Romaine lettuce
1 medium Fuji apple
1/4 lime
1/4 cup blueberries (fresh or frozen)
1 small leaf of Aloe
- Blend all ingredients in blender until smooth. Nutri-Tip: Great drink for diabetics because blueberries and aloe naturally reduce blood sugar.

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Feed your Plants GS - February 19, 2010

Two months ago I transplanted two tiny Hedera Ivy plants, and here is a picture of how they look now. Thanks to weekly feedings of leftover Green Smoothie, the plants are a vibrant abundant addition to my home!

Plant Food:  After drinking your Green Smoothie, don't throw away what is left over in your blender. Just add water to the remains of Green Smoothie in your blender, shake, and pour around the base of your houseplants. Do this once a week and your plants will thank you!

Basic Recipe:  If you are not already drinking Green Smoothies, they are a wonderful introduction to the raw and living foods lifestyle. In the beginning you may desire a sweeter taste, so try blending 2 cups purified water, 60% fresh or frozen fruits, and 40% dark leafy greens. As your taste buds begin to change you may notice a gradual shift to a 50/50 ratio of fruits/greens. Mix all in your blender and drink a blender full each day (preferably in the morning). Pay attention to how your body responds to its daily feedings of raw living, concentrated, whole, nutrient rich food.

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Soluble vs. Insoluble Fibre in GS - February 14, 2010

Confused about what fruit and fibre is best in your Green Smoothie? You are not alone. I have received many inquiries asking these questions. It is easier to begin with a sweeter drink and gradually progress to more greens in your GS. 60% Organic fruit, 40% Organic greens, and two cups water.

But what if you do not use bananas? Simply use fruit containing soluble fibre for a thick and creamy GS as pictured here. To help understand there are two main types of fibre - soluble and insoluble.

SOLUBLE FIBRE is capable of being dissolved. It soaks up water and slows down digestion. This gel pulls waste out through the colon and delays the emptying of the stomach while making you feel full. some soluble fibre such as guar gums (found in Chia seeds and mango) slow down the release of sugars affecting the blood sugar levels. Soluble fibre usually thickens a Green Smoothie giving a creamy texture.

Some sources of soluble fibre:  banana, mango, papaya, blueberries, pear, peach, young Thai coconut (milk, water or meat), durian, avocado (1/4 to 1/2), and Chia seeds.

INSOLUBLE FIBRE does not dissolve when placed in liquid. It offers many benefits to intestinal health as it passes through the digestive track fairly intact and removes toxins from the body. In Green Smoothies, insoluble fibre causes the greens and fruits to separate.

Some fruit sources of insoluble fibre:  apple, orange, lemon, pineapple, grapes.

Some fruits have varying degrees of the two types of fibre, e.g. the pectin in apples is considered soluble fibre. What I have found is that apples, citrus, etc will cause the GS to separate - you can actually see a division between the layers of fruits and the greens. To thicken while adding texture to a GS - my two favourites are mango and young Thai coconut water.









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