Well, it's now the end of January and I'm done with birthday celebrations! I'm back to my green smoothies after making too many raw cheesecakes!
I'm pretty sure many of us have already settled in to a great start for 2013 especially in the areas of health and fitness. I'm not one who puts her goals in paper at the beginning of each year. However, I automatically find myself turning the switch on to the I'll exercise more" mode every 2nd of January. Sounds familiar? I don't really get carried away with all that food during the holidays but I tend to shy away from my yoga studio or my gym and then my mind go on a mini vacation so to speak. Got my groove back now and hoping you got yours too.
Some of you maybe trying to focus on eating more veggies which is awesome. I bet you've also considered green smoothies or are already even making them. They get very popular around this time of year. I want to share a recipe of one of my favourite combinations.
There are a few things I try to follow when making green smoothies which can also be helpful to you.
1. More greens than fruits is a good rule of thumb. I know that it can be challenging in the beginning. If you are new to green smoothies, using equal portions of fruits and veggies is a good place to start and then gradually increase the vegetables. Cucumbers, lettuce and spinach have mild flavours and are not too strong for a newbie. Just be careful not to overpack on fruits as we can also overdo our sugar consumption depending on what we are eating daily. This is specially so to those who have medical issues like insulin resistance or if you just love eating sweets. Dr. Joseph Mercola has a great article regarding fructose from fruit which you can read here. Experiment on your own and pretty soon, you’ll be able to come up with your own favourite combinations.
2. Using organic produce or avoiding those fruits and veggies with high levels of pesticide. Check this list By the way, kale/collard greens and green beans have been added to the original dirty dozen.
3. Rotating greens is also a great idea. Here is a very informative article on the three top reasons why it is important.
Kale, Sprouts and Pear Smoothie
Ingredients: (Preferably Organic)
1 big leaf of curly kale, torn into pieces, about 1 cup
Handful of pea sprouts or sunflower sprouts, about 1 cup
1 pear, cut up
1/4 cup unsweetened dry coconuts (see notes)
2 Tbsp. walnuts
1 Tbsp. chia seeds or sprouted chia powder
2-3 Tbsp. lemon juice
1/8 - 1/4 of an avocado (depending on how thick you want it)
2 1/2 cups water (or more)
2 Tbsp. dried golden berries or 1 piece Medjool dates (optional)
unsweetened cacao nibs for toppings
Place all the ingredients into the blender and process until smooth. Adjust the taste. This serves two. Transfer the smoothie to glasses and top with cacao nibs. Enjoy!
This mixture maybe a little bland for other people. Add 1 banana, increase the water by 1 cup and exclude the dates.
I buy the raw and organic dehydrated coconuts from The Big Carrot, a natural food market located near the Danforth and Chester area of Toronto. They may also be available at Whole Foods Market. I also soak and blend these to make my version of coconut milk. They are also great to add in salads, porridges and other drinks.