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How To Build The Perfect Smoothie

Nearly every day for me starts with a green smoothie. Since breakfast is my least favorite meal of the day, drinking a smoothie ensures I get the jumpstart needed for my day in a gentle and nutritious way.

 

Follow these steps to master building the perfect smoothie.

 

First things first. You must have a good quality high-speed blender. On the market today are plenty to choose from; Ninja, Blend-Tec, Vitamix, and more, take your pick. I use this Ninja that was purchased for me as a gift and I love it. I use it at least once a day every day, sometimes even 3 times a day.

 

berry smoothie

If your produce has already been washed, you can make your smoothie in a matter of minutes. So grab an item from each of the categories below and let’s blend.

 

LIQUID

Always start with a few ice cubes unless you’re using frozen fruit. The high-speed motor on your blender is likely to slightly heat the contents of your drink as you are blending. And I don’t know about you but I don’t like drinking my smoothies hot.

 

Then add about one cup liquid of your choice. Some excellent options are:

~Coconut Water

~Non-Dairy Milks (Coconut, Cashew, Almond)

~Water

 

 

VEGETABLES/FRUITS

Here the combinations are endless. I do try not to combine too many high sugar fruits in one drink. Even though it’s natural sugar, we still want to be mindful of overall sugar intake. Some of my favorite fruits & veggies:

 

Veggies

~Spinach

~Kale

~Swiss Chard

~Beet Greens

~Cucumber

~Avocado

Spinach

Collards

 

Fruits

~Berries

~1/2 Banana

~Kiwi

~Apples

Strawberries

Raspberries

 

 

PROTEIN

If your drinking your smoothie as a meal replacement you’ll want to add protein. Some good choices:

~Nut Butters (Peanut, Almond, Sunflower Seed)

~High quality plant based protein powder

~Plain Greek Yogurt

 

 

ADD INS

Up the nutritional factor my adding some of these boosters:

~Spirulina

~Chia or Flax seeds

~Raw Cacao Powder

 

Ok friends, now that you’ve learned how to build the perfect smoothie, what are you waiting for? Get to blending!

 

Raspberry Smoothie

kale smoothie

Berry Smoothie

 

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Check out two of my favorite smoothie recipes

Apple Pie Smoothie

Black Forest Smoothie

 

As always, it is my prayer that you’ve been Inspired To Live Fully!

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Black Forest Smoothie

Dessert for breakfast anyone? Here’s your guilt free way to enjoy dessert for breakfast or anytime. The chocolaty goodness of this smoothie rivals even the most moist, dense, chocolate tall cake (and I love chocolate cake).

 

This rich decadent smoothie not only tastes good but also is good for you. It is chock full of vitamins, minerals and nutrients to nourish and fuel your body. The chocolate in the smoothie comes from raw cacao powder, not to be confused with cocoa powder, which is roasted and loses some of its vital nutrient power in the roasting process. Raw cacao powder is high in antioxidants. Antioxidants stabilize and destroy free radicals, pesky little byproducts that form when your body attempts to break down environmental toxins. Antioxidants are also known to reduce inflammation. While you may have heard that green tea was the way to fight these free radical, here’s another weapon to add to your arsenal. Iron, zinc, potassium and manganese too? Then throw in some spinach and chia seeds and this smoothie gets better and better. For more on the benefits of chia seeds, click here.

  

 When cherries are in season, I’ll use fresh but since I just can’t wait, I’m using frozen frozen. And I’ve taken the liberty to use shredded coconut in place of the whipped cream you’d traditionally have with this dessert.

 

Without further ado, presenting my new best friend:   

Black Forest Smoothie

 

1 cup unsweetened almond milk

1 handful of spinach

1 date pitted

½ cup dark cherries

2 tbsp raw cacao powder

¼ cup unsweetened shredded coconut

1 tsp chia seeds

½ tsp vanilla extract

a few cubes of ice

 

Place all ingredients in high-speed blender and blend until smooth and creamy. Enjoy!

 

As always, it is my prayer that you’ve been Inspired To Live Fully!

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Get Rid Of It

I’m moving full steam ahead to run into 2015 with right thinking and right believing. To ensure that my spirit, mind and BODY are in alignment, I’m going to start 2015 resetting my body by doing a 3-day cleanse; I’m going to rid of it.  The ‘it’ being toxins and junk from my body.

 

I have several friends that have purposed to honor their temples in various ways for the upcoming year. One friend is becoming a vegetarian, one is doing a 10 day cleanse and another is going raw for the year.

 

The benefits of a cleanse are numerous:

 

Eliminate Toxins

Balance Hormones

Break Bad Habits

Retrain The Palette

The reset is your jumpstart. After the cleanse though you must stay the course. Imagine yourself…it’s a perfect summer day. As you move about, the soundtrack that plays in your mind is Will Smith’s Summertime. The sun is shining and you take your car to get detailed; vacuumed, hand-washed, clean in and out and smelling good. Then you take your clean ride off-roading, getting it all muddy and filthy. Would you do that?

 

The same can be said then about muddying up your body. After you reset and do a cleanse, do you want to go eat a bag of Cheetos which contains items the body can’t readily recognize and/or process? Get rid of it.

 

For my cleanse, I will start each morning with green tea. I will then have a smoothie for breakfast, lunch and dinner. I will treat myself to 2 snacks a day i.e. kale chips, nuts or seeds. I’ll be making some of my favorite smoothies including my Apple Pie Smoothie. I’ll generally add chia seeds and coconut water to up the nutrient quotient and add almond or sun butter for protein. After the 3-day cleanse, I’ll continue to eat light, lean and clean by consuming mostly raw foods for the next 7 days.

raspberry smoothie

berry cucumber

 

berry smoothie

Then God said, “Look! I have given you every seed-bearing plant throughout the earth and all the fruit trees for your food.”

Genesis 1:29

 

Consuming raw food by way of smoothies gives your body access to optimal levels of vitamins, minerals and enzymes. Consuming as such can contribute to improved immunity, increased energy and improved digestion.

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Since you’ll be eliminating toxins from within, you can also eliminate toxins through your largest organ, the skin. Move it out and get rid of it.

 

Dry Brushing

Your skin excretes 1/3 of the toxins from your body. Dry brushing stimulates the lymphatic system, which helps remove toxins from the body. To read more on dry brushing click here.

 

Detox Bath

An Epson Salt detox bath helps draw out toxins, reduce inflammation, helps muscle & nerve function and more. Whip up 1 cup of Epsom salt, ½ cup baking soda and a few drops of essential oils and enjoy.

 

So who’s with me? While you may not go as radical as my friend doing raw 365, you can do SOMETHING. Purpose in your head and heart to make daily food choices, that positively impact your health.

 

For additional encouragement please visit the recipe link of my website for tasty, healthy meal ideas.

 

As always, it is my prayer that you’ve been Inspired To Live Fully!

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Apple Pie Smoothie

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My favorite smoothie. Cool and creamy. Rich and decadent. Dessert in a jar. I usually have this for breakfast once a week.

3 cubes ice

1 cup almond milk

1 medium green apple cored and cut into chunks

1 cup of spinach

1 tbsp nut butter (I use almond or sunflower seed)

1/4 tsp cinnamon

1/8 tsp nutmeg

1/2 tsp vanilla

2 medjool dates

Blend in high speed blender until smooth. Enjoy.