Superfood smoothies are a quick, easy and delicious way to add nutrients to your body.
In December of 2014 I started drinking a green smoothie a day for 30 days to put the reported benefits to the test.
The results were amazing:
- Even energy throughout the day and that meant no afternoon slump.
- Improved skin appearance. Honestly, there is a healthy glow on my face that wasn’t there before.
- Unintentional, but healthy weight loss.
- My cravings have changed. That’s not to say I don’t crave chocolate or a salty snack very now and then, but I also crave the sweetness of fruits and the flavors of vegetables.
- The most surprising and the most wonderful benefit, no afternoon cravings to snack! Boom! I’ve battled what call the bewitching hours from 4:00 to 6:00 for what feels like forever. During those few hours I always had this overwhelming need to snack that had nothing to do with feeling hungry. I tried everything with little to no success until now.
To this day, about 97% of the time, I still drink a smoothie-a-day.
Extra bonus: you can’t beat the convenience!
Though there is no legal or medical definition, sources are in agreement that superfoods are nutrient powerhouses that pack large doses of antioxidants, polyphenols, vitamins, and minerals.
Nutrient density is important for health and longevity. Dr. Fuhrman created the ANDI (Aggregate Nutrient Density Index) to show how popular foods stack up in terms of micronutrient density per calorie. The more nutrient-dense food you consume, the more nutrient dense food you consume the more you will be satisfied with fewer calories. ANDI scores are based on thirty-four important nutritional parameters. Foods are ranked on a scale of 1-1000, with the most nutrient-dense cruciferous leafy green vegetables scoring 1000.
As a nutritional powerhouse, some foods catapult from good food to superfood.
From high antioxidants to omegas, and everything in between, these superfoods will have you feeling and looking your best. And, every one of them can be used in your next smoothie:
Acai Berries The Brazilian super boost is packed with powerful antioxidants, anthocyanins and flavonoids, fiber and heart healthy fats. Reported benefits of Acai include encourages weight loss, good for your heart health, improves immunity, slows down the aging process, and improves sexual performance. Acai berries are now commonly found in the frozen section of some grocery stores and health food stores.
Avocado A source of healthy raw fat. Avocados also provide close to 20 essential health boosting nutrients including: fiber, potassium, vitamin E, B- vitamins and folic acid.
Almonds Rich in phytochemicals, plant components that promote heart and vascular health. Almonds are a great source of vitamin E, potassium, calcium, magnesium, protein, fiber and iron.
Chia Seeds: These teeny seeds have a huge amount of fiber, which is why chia seeds plus liquid result in a pudding-like gel. One ounce (almost 7 teaspoons) has almost 10 grams fiber, 6.5 grams polyunsaturated (healthy) fats, about 4.5 grams protein and 140 calories along with smaller amounts of iron, zinc and calcium.
Cacao Powder or Nibs Naturally packed with antioxidants, cacao may help improve circulation and release the feel good chemicals, serotonin and endorphins. It’s heart healthy by helping to lower cholesterol and blood pressure. Cacao contains calcium, magnesium, sulfur, zinc and iron.
Flax Seed Also known as linseed oil, flaxseed oil is full of omega-3 fatty acids, alpha-linolenic acid and vitamin E. Add a teaspoon to your smoothie for boost of cardiovascular benefits, anti-inflammatory benefits, and digestive health.
Kale A cruciferous vegetable that is beneficial to your stomach, liver and immune system. It’s an excellent source of calcium, iron, lutein, chlorophyll and vitamins A, B and C.
Maca Root Powder Maca, a tuber grown in the Andes Mountains of Peru, may help improve libido, enhance your mood, lower stress, help ease tension and increase energy.
Spinach A green leafy vegetable that is rich in water-soluble vitamins, fat-soluble vitamins, minerals, and a wide variety of nutrients including magnesium, iron, vitamins K, E and A, B-vitamins, folate, calcium, and manganese.
Mix up the recipes and change out ingredients based on your preferences. Try a new smoothie each week, and see if you discover some new favorites! Who knows? Maybe you’ll start a smoothie-a-day habit.
I would love to chat.
What is your favorite smoothie recipe?
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