Why I love Smoothies
Today’s post is all about The Smoothie. From the moment I started experimenting with smoothies, they became my all time favorite and convenient way of keeping myself sustained from day to day. One of the biggest issues surrounding a healthy “diet” is the time, or lack thereof, of day to day living. I would say it is one of the top contributors of poor intake, and the reason many people struggle to make a healthy changeover to a more nourishing “diet”.
Picture this, you arrive home after a long day of work, you’re tired and you’re hungry. Before you crash and burn in a state of comatose on the couch with a highly processed snack food of some sorts, you have to either prep and cook dinner, fit in some exercise, walk your dog etc. or hopefully unwind…and then… plan the whole of the next day’s meals in advance? It’s a lot to ask! The reality of the situation is that busy lives often leave us with very little time to think about our health.
The Smoothie, I believe, is the answer to your prayers, (I know they were for me). It’s rare for a day to go by without me having at least one or two of these compact nutritious treats. This applies in winter as well, I have no problem slugging one back in the colder months. If it tastes great, I’m going for it! I just keep them to room temperature. There are even some smoothies that are best served warm. This particular recipe being one of them.
Smoothies are a quick to make, ultra tasty way of getting loads of nutrients into your body. They can be as calorically dense as you need depending on what ingredients you choose, and what your energy requirements are for the day. Keep your smoothie light by using fruit, a low calorie liquid base like coconut water and a little natural sweetener. Add some avocado, oats and high quality plant based/superfood protein powder to pack a little more punch.
If I’ve got a busy day ahead, my go-to routine consists of a 10 minute morning romance with my blender (I highly recommend the Nutri-bullet for its convenience) where I will prepare at least two smoothies for the road. I don’t worry too much about whether or not the nutrients are all still in tact and functioning optimally, what matters is that I’ve got food for the road and I’m not going to consume some pitiful excuse for food in a hunger frenzy later on. Other simple snacks that are easy to travel with are avocado and kale wraps with some fermented vegetables and a sprinkle of hemp seeds, or simply some soaked almonds and sulphur dioxide free dried fruit. The list is endless, and will likely be a whole blog post on its own.
Tips on how to eat your smoothie
Digestion starts in the mouth, swirl your smoothie around your tongue and palate to get your taste buds singing, but also to mix your smoothie with the salivary enzyme, amylase. Amylase begins the digestive process by breaking down starch molecules into maltose, a smaller starch molecule. There are debates as to whether or not there is actually enough amylase in saliva to perform this function, nevertheless, it brings consciousness to every mouthful and it gives you time to experience the full taste experience. When it comes to smoothies most of the work has already been done for us and there’s not much left in the ways of mechanical digestion. However, keep the above in mind as it applies to all those tasty morsels that pass your lips. Avoid freezing cold smoothies as they have been shown to put strain on the digestive process, go for room temperature or add an ice cube or two to get that refreshing feeling you’re after.
2 C Almond Milk
2 T melted Cacao Butter
1 t Mesquite (Heaped)
½ t vanilla essence
2 T Lemon Juice
1 t Coconut Oil
¼ t cardamom
½ t cinnamon
1 Inch Ginger
¼ t nutmeg
2 T Honey
Make 2 cups of almond milk in a high-powered blender, and strain through a nut milk bag. A Nutri-bullet gives an amazing smooth consistency, without too much residue. In fact, if you’re going to start experimenting with plant-based foods a high-powered blender is something to add to your wish list. You might think that making nut milk is some long and tedious process, but it literally takes 2 minutes start to finish. I timed it.
Melt your cacao butter over a double boiler to prevent your butter from burning (when I’m lazy I don’t even melt the butter, but it comes out silkier if you do!) You can also place a larger ovenproof dish on top of a smaller pot (making sure they fit together well) to get the same effects of a double boiler. I use a small ovenproof dish on top of my old school gas-camper kettle. Improvisation is key.
Pit your dates, peel you bananas and juice your lemon. Blend all the ingredients together until creamy and smooth. Lastly, pour your mixture into a small saucepot and gently heat until nice and warm. Use your finger as a thermometer, you want the mixture to be warm and nourishing and not scorching hot! You don’t want to lose the goodness of the ingredients. When we heat food to over 40 Degrees Celsius, we start losing some of the minerals and health promoting qualities that make plant foods so potent. Be mindful of your raw to cooked food ratio and where you can help it (this smoothie being the perfect example) heat gently to preserve those life giving properties.
This drink makes for a perfect guilt free treat or meal replacement, and should leave a silly and satisfied look on your face.
Whenever I tuck into some natural super satisfying concoction of golden raw honey and other glorious earthy ingredients, not only do I feel tremendously grateful, I also cannot help but recall my strawberry Steri Stumie days. What the hell!! How on earth did I discover this way of eating so late in my life, and was I ever really satisfied, I think not. This “health changeover” has been one mind-blowing gift from the universe, and I want nothing more then to share this gem with you.