Thursday, March 3, 2011

MY NEW FAVORITE "HEALTH" FOOD!

I recently realized I needed to start eating in a much healthier way.  I'm not doing it for the sole purpose of losing a few pounds (although that would be welcomed!)...I just wanted to feel better.

So, I started my own version of a Mediterranean type diet...less red meat, more fruits and veggies, more good Omega-3, fish oil capsules, and watching my calories a little.  Believe me, I am NOT depriving myself, and I DO feel so much better.

But, I wanted to pass along my new "favorite" part of my new eating plan...Smoothies!

I know, I know...smoothies aren't anything new.  But until now, I had not imbibed very often. Buying them somewhere seems pretty expensive, but making your own at home is cheaper, and fun! You will get several servings of your daily fruits and veggies.  Try it for your kids....they'll think they're having a special treat when they're really getting vitamins and nutrients!

I was googling away one day, and the smoothie idea popped up.  I did more reading, and decided to try a recipe that sounded pretty good. It was good!  In fact, I loved it!

So I want to share my new insights, and the recipe for a good smoothie...yummy and healthy!

You need a combination of the following ingredients:
Liquid - Milk, Soy or Almond Milk, 100% Fruit Juice - Use low or non-fat if watching calories
Yogurt - Any flavor (I like vanilla) - Use low or non-fat if desired
Fruit - Fresh, canned, or frozen - Any kind you want! (Over ripe fruit works well because the flavor is usually stronger) Watch the sugar content on the canned fruit.
Veggie - Fresh or frozen (Canned usually has too much salt). Fresh spinach, fresh or frozen broccoli, cucumber, carrots, sweet potato, all work well, but I know there are more. Hint: You usually can't taste the veggies in the blended smoothie.
Optional - Flax seeds (I always add a few as they have a lot of Omega-3)

There is no set recipe.  Use as much of the above ingredients as you want, in any combination...use what you have on hand. Come up with your own favorite! Or google Smoothie recipes...you'll find hundreds.
Get out your regular old blender...it doesn't have to be anything special...mine is VERY old!
My usual way to start is this (Increase amounts if you want more than 1 serving) :
1/2 cup lite vanilla soy milk
1/2 cup fruit juice
1/2 cup vanilla yogurt
Approx. 1/2 cup fruit - take out any pits or core, but do not peel - chop in to small pieces
Approx. 1/2 cup veggies  (Hint - green veggies will turn your smoothie green!)
1 Tablespoon flax seeds
Blend on high until no chunks are left.

If most of your ingredients are cold, your smoothie will be cold; however, you can add 1-2 ice cubes if you want. Or, pre-freeze some of your liquid (milk or juice) in ice cube trays to throw into your blender!

The smoothie in the picture was what I had this morning.  I made it with vanilla soy milk, apple juice, vanilla yogurt, apple sauce, 1/2 fresh peach, and a handful of fresh spinach (I forgot the flax seeds today!) Yumm!

Try it...You'll like it!

2 comments:

  1. Great recipe! I love smoothies too. They make a great breakfast and a wonderful lunch too...when I use apple (which is awesome with vanilla yougert) I sprinkle a little cinnamon in too..and leave on the skin!

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  2. I've been having smoothies every morning lately - not to be more healthy but I seem to be craving fruit - can't get enough of it. I use a 'magic bullet' to make mine - great for single servings AND super easy to clean up!

    If you're not worried about calories a little bit of ice cream (vanilla or strawberry) really adds a lot!

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