Tuesday, September 10, 2013

7 Ways To Supercharge Your Next Smoothie!

Is your smoothie getting you down? Do you need some Smoothie inspiration?

Here are 7 supplements to turn that Smoothie frown upside down.

(Disclaimer* the use of all these supplements in one smoothie may be too awesome for your taste buds and body to comprehend… do not try this at home – or do, but take it slow!)

Protein – If you are already doing a whey protein, switch it up. Try out a combined vegan protein, using rice, pea, hemp, cranberry, potato, alfalfa, or a combination of. Combined, these vegan proteins have a similar amino acid profile to whey, but are often easier on the digestive system, especially for those sensitive to dairy products. Protein is necessary for recovery after workouts, supports a healthy metabolism, and helps to regulate blood sugar, among a number of other benefits.

Greens – If you can’t seem to bring yourself to throw a variety of leafy green vegetables into your smoothie everyday (it’s actually not that bad!), then the next best thing is adding a scoop of greens powder. Wheat grass, spirulina, chlorella, spinach, beet greens, barley grass, alfalfa, kale, and broccoli are just a few ingredients you may see in a combination greens supplement. In one simple scoop, you are not only increasing your fruit and vegetable intake substantially, but you are supporting your body in its effort to detoxify. The addition of a greens powder to your smoothie routine can lead to increased energy, improved alkalinity, enhanced digestion, and clearer thinking… sounds worth it to me! Many greens supplements come in both liquid and powder formats.

Raw Cacao Nibs- This delicious, intensely chocolaty super food has a bit of a bitter taste (we’re used to sweetened chocolate), but packs a punch of antioxidants, not to mention being high in trace minerals such as magnesium and iron. Choco-Coco Monkey Smoothie: Coconut milk, raw cacao nibs, a banana and a chocolate flavoured vegan protein. Yum, yum, yum!

Goji Berries – Did you know that according to Traditional Chinese Medicine, the Goji berry or Wolfberry plant has been used for centuries as a means of supporting greater health, vitality, longevity, energy, and stamina? Goji berries add a nice sweet taste to your smoothie, along with a high dose of antioxidants, vitamin C, beta-carotene, iron, protein, healthy fat, and soluble fiber. Soak them in a little water to soften them, then throw them (along with the water) right in, and blend!

Ch-Ch-Chia – High in omega 3 fatty acid ALA, chia is a healthy addition to any smoothie. These nutrient dense seeds are also high in fibre, and protein.  If you are using chia seeds, its best to consume the smoothie immediately, as it will eventually turn your smoothie into more of a gelatin-like substance, rather than a liquid. This isn’t always a bad thing: did you know you could use ground chia as an egg substitute? 1 Tbsp. ground chia seed mixed with 3 Tbsp. water. Let sit 10 -15 minutes until it gels. You have the equivalent of one egg for baking.

Maca – Maca, or Peruvian ginseng is not a member of the ginseng family, but is often called such because of its similar action; increasing stamina, energy, and sexual function, as well as balancing hormone levels and supporting healthy blood glucose levels. Maca root is available in powder form, making it an easy and energizing addition to any super smoothie!

Fish Oil – in some cases, getting your nutrients through diet is just as easy and can be more beneficial. Throwing sardines into your smoothie is probably not an option, so this is not really one of those cases. Fish oil has changed. If you haven’t tried some of the new fish oils on the market, you are missing out. They are great tasting, and very smooth, with no repeating. DHA and EPA, the omega 3 fatty acids found in fish oil, are virtually impossible to get from any other source and are so immensely important for cognitive development, cardiovascular health, the immune system, mood and more. Try it. You’ll like it. Always add fish oil as the last ingredient in your smoothie, after you have finished blending.

How’s that for smoothie inspiration? Enjoy!

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