Smoothies are made by combining fresh fruit and/or veggies and/or other healthy stuff with a liquid (I go for water or coconut water most of the time).
My husband and I mostly drink what are called GREEN SMOOTHIES
. We make them ourselves in a heavy-duty blender called a VitaMix although there are certainly other heavy-duty blenders that do a good job, and there are actually cheap-o blenders you can pick up at the Sally Ann Thrift store that will serve you well enough (they may just break down earlier). The chief advantage of the VitaMix is that it will rupture the plant cells in a few seconds and create a smoooooooth blended drink without strings and chunks and other things we sometimes come across in less powerful blenders. However, in a less rugged blender you can still get the task done: simply run things through in several smaller batches and then re-combine when they are to the smoothness of your liking.
Some Questions that have come up about Green Smoothies include:
Q: Why do you add greens to your smoothie? Doesn't that make it taste...um... bad?
>The delicate, mineral-dense greens that one adds to a Green Smoothie are generally over-ridden in taste by the intense flavour of whatever fruit you have added.
Use a 60% fruit to 40% greens ratio. In putting together her thesis for the greens going into a Green Smoothie, Victoria Boutenko researched what the strongest, healthiest vegetarian mammals in their natural habitat, the gorilla, eat-- not only bananas, as some might think, but about 60% of their food is greens-- branches, grasses, etc. A chimpanzee eats similarly in nature.
While humans generally begin to look older as they enter their mature years, an elderly chimp (35-60 years old) often is indiscernable from an adolescent chimp in her/his early teens. Diet certainly has a lot to do with longevity. Boutenko and others point to the high mineral bio-availability of greens that are well-chewed. They are easily digested, full of chlorophyl and digestive enzymes, and the perfect match for a delicious, nutritious fruit. Because most of us have weak jaws or compromised teeth, it is difficult for us to chew the greens and rupture open their cell walls as a chimp is able to do. However, we now have these fabulous blenders to make up for our deficient jaws!
And yes, some people are called "tasters
" and will find the flavour of the various greens unpleasant for sure-- so it is a good idea to up the fruit ratio until you no longer feel ill with the taste of the greens. Victoria Boutenko herself said that she felt like vomiting when she first began to drink "green" drinks. But, hang in there, because the health benefits far, far outweigh any unpleasant initial reactions.
Q: What about food combining? I heard you're not supposed to eat vegetables and fruits at the same time... isn't that what you are doing with green smoothies?
>I know that I sound like I'm chronically quoting Victoria, but she is the woman in the know.... she states that she sees "greens" as a category separate from vegetables and fruits... its own new category. When blended up in the VitaMix or other high speed blender, the greens perfectly combine with the fruit-- no worries about indigestion. I do practice a couple of precautions: when I use melon (cantaloupe, watermelon, honeydew) I use it with greens, water and nothing else. I know that cucumber is in the same family as melons but I don't seem to have any issues with using it with other things like tomatoes, garlic, and other ingredients in a "blended salad"....which I think I will have for supper!
So, that's it for today! Just screw up your courage and pick a fruit and some greens to try with some water, 60-40. Blend until smooth and enjoy! If you are used to a lot of processed sugars, you could use a little Stevia, but you will be amazed at how quickly your body will adjust to cutting down on, and eventually out, processed sugars, table salt, etc..
This smoothie information is for you-- it's my bias-- so please see your own health care professional before making any health-related decisions. If you found anything useful, intriguing, or have questions, I would really appreciate your feedback... please use the comment box below.
To your better and better health, ~Cynthia