Friday, October 16, 2009

Morning Mate

My roomates always cursed my smoothie routine in the morning! Luckily my loving partner whom I live with has the same desire for a nutritional kick start in the am. We both leave for work around the same time so we take turns making shakes.We both sorta modify a base recipe that we find delicious and energizing. The essentials are blueberries, blackberries a banana, walnuts, honey, oil (olive or flaxseed), protein powder and either coconut water or rosewater. Other ingredients we sometime add are gogi berries, almonds, cinnamon and hemphearts.

So why blueberries? Researchers at the USDA Human Nutrition Center (HNRCA) have ranked blueberries #1 in antioxidant activity when compared to 40 other fresh fruits and vegetables. They contain powerful phytochemicals, such as anthocyanin, which is the pigment that gives blueberries their color. Blueberries are associated with numerous health benefits including protection against urinary-tract infections, cancer, age-related health conditions and brain damage from strokes. They may also reduce the build-up of so-called "bad" cholesterol, which contributes to heart disease and stroke. Additionally, blueberries contain vitamins A and C, zinc, potassium, iron, calcium and magnesium, and are high in fiber and low in calories. Blackberries are not only free (my bf spends hours picking them from a secret location then we freeze them) but they are high in fiber and vitamin C they also strengthen blood vessels, protect eyesight and reduce heart disease.

Bananas are natures best source of potassium they also lower blood pressure and act as an antacid. We have swapped from tossing in a handful of almonds to walnuts since they have significantly higher amounts of omega 3 fatty acids as compared to other nuts. Having a healthy dose of omega 3’s everyday are essential for optimal nutrition since they fight cancer causing agents, cardiovascular disease and rheumatoid arthritis, the protective effect of omega 3’s exhibited in brain health could even show promise for future research in the prevention of Parkinson's disease! My man likes to use olive oil, I like to use flaxseed oil since it increases body’s production of energy, accelerates healing, improves absorption of calcium, strengthens nails, improves function of the liver and its good for the skin!

Right now we are using Transform plus as the powder in our shakes cause it’s packed full of vitamins and minerals including greens and spirulina. Sometimes we use the Nutiva hemp series in Amazon Acai or Berry pomegranate which also has a tone of beneficial ingredients. Gogi berries are another powerful antioxidant that minimize damage to cells from free radicals. These berries are rich in vitamin A which have anti-aging effects and they also boost immune function, protect vision and prevent heart disease. These should be avoided for anyone taking blood thinning prescriptions.

Last but not least is a sprinkle of hemp hearts, these expensive little morsels can be found in health food stores and they are a power food that are full of beneficial vitamins and enzymes. To top it off we wash down a couple Krill Oil capsules and vitamin D with our nutritious shakes. 

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