|blending a grapefruit smoothie in a Vitamix blender|
One of the most wonderful changes I've made in the last 12 months has been to add a fresh green smoothie to my daily food intake.
|ingredients for my Green Grape fruit Smoothie|
Nutritionists are always saying we need to eat more dark leafy green vegetables. The darker lettuces (kale, chard, mustard greens, dandelion greens, spinach, arugula, etc) are what they are referring to. These greens are the most beneficial foods we can eat because they have a very high concentration of the nutrients our bodies need.
|preparing the grapefruit|
Dark leafy greens strengthen our energy levels, provide protein and fiber (which promotes a balanced pH level), maintains homeostasis, promotes weight loss, slows down sugar absorption, decreases the chances of diabetes (and improves previously diagnosed cases), help to prevent cancer, reduces cholesterol, keeps the bowels working properly, prevents hemorrhoids and ulcers, and strengthens the heart.
|Grapefruit, banana, kale, and orange juice in the blender|
When we eat chlorophyll-rich foods (i.e. dark leafy greens) our red blood cell count is increased, our immune system is improved, vision is helped, inflammation is reduced, and environmental toxins are counteracted.
|Ready to process|
I love knowing there is something I can so easily do to enhance my health without having to take handfuls of supplements (as I used to do for years).
Every morning we have one of the dark leafy greens that I have previously frozen in about 1-cup amounts in zipper plastic bags. To that we add 2 cups of water, or orange juice, or almond milk and usually 1 sliced banana. Then each day of the week I vary the fruits and a protein in nut or seed form. We have strawberries one day, blueberries another, mango, etc. On one day I use a fresh beet instead of a fruit (but admittedly, that one is for the most hearty of nutrition-minded people!).
I also vary the nuts and seeds from day to day. My favorites are chia seeds, ground flax seed, and hemp seeds. It's a good idea to rotate the type of greens, fruits, and nuts/seeds. The body handles variety better than having the same thing day after day.
Tuesday's Green Grapefruit Smoothie (makes 4+ cups)
2 cups orange juice (I used Tropicana)
1 cup fresh Kale, chopped
1 ruby red grapefruit*, peeled
1 sliced banana
2 Tablespoons ground flax seed
1 tablespoon raw honey (optional)
Combine all ingredients in a powerful blender until smooth. If your blender is not super-powerful, you can still make this smoothie. Just chop the ingredients smaller before putting them in the pitcher, to reduce the strain on the blender's motor.
I follow the example of my daughter by drinking mine out of a quart-sized canning jar, with a straw. This fills me up and is all I need for breakfast.
For the best nutritional and taste value, drink the smoothie immediately after you make it. However it can be kept for 24 hours if tightly covered and refrigerated. If you don't drink it right away, it will separate as it sits. Stir it up well before drinking.
*A word to the wise: some cholesterol-lowering prescription drugs advise avoiding grapefruit. The grapefruit and the drug (statins, in particular) are apparently not compatible.