I was having dinner with friends the other night and while having a conversation about why I don’t eat cereal (because it’s mostly gluten-full, loaded with sugar and pretty addictive), they asked me what I have for breakfast and lunch and I described my morning smoothie. Then they asked me why I soak my walnuts and because I almost never remember why I do the things I do (I read a good reason why, incorporate into my eating habits and then promptly forget the reason) I thought I would look it up again. Then I realized I should post my recipe and the reasons I use the same ingredients every day.
Remember I’m all about ease and building good habits into your EVERY DAY routine. This is why I don’t change up my recipe. I figured out a combination that PACKS nutrients I need every day (things that don’t necessarily get into my diet through what I eat), it tastes pretty good and it’s filling. Once I saved up money to buy my Vitamix Blender (an essential tool which took me TWO YEARS to save up for – I asked every birthday and Christmas for gift certificates to Williams Sonoma!) I was able to build this easily into my routine:
THF Power-Packed Smoothie Recipe (serves two)
Note: Ingredients are all organic if possible
1/2 – 1 c Kefir
1/2 – 1 c Coconut Milk
1/2 – 1 c Frozen blueberries
1/2c Frozen or fresh other berries
2 sm or 1 lg Banana
1/2 c Raw walnuts soaked in warm water for a few hours
4-6 c Spinach (a little sweeter than others) and other greens
thumb-sized Raw ginger
Other I sometimes throw in other fresh fruit that needs to be used!
Now WHY do I put these particular ingredients in my smoothie???
Kefir: 99% lactose free, provides A&D and live cultures that will help your gut flora. See Chris Kresser’s super popular post on Kefir:
Coconut milk: I get mine from Trader Joe’s for convenience and they call it coconut beverage (not 100% ideal but it’s convenient. It’s also organic even though it doesn’t say so on the front of the carton). This provides (I think it’s fortified) calcium, A, D and B-12
Blueberries: For your brain! In a nutshell (from Dr. Axe site):
- Anti-aging – Antioxidants are your best friend to keep Father Time at bay.
- Brain – Because they contain such a high amount of phenols, particularly gallic acid, blueberries are known as “neuro-protective agents.”
I love this super passionate post on Jen's Reviews about all of the health benefits of blueberries!
Other Berries: ANTIOXIDANTS!
Raw walnuts (soaked): Omega 3 fatty acids (great way to get your omega 3s in every day!). Also antioxidant and anti-inflammatory (so important for reducing chronic inflammation!). Easiest to keep a container for soaking on your counter next to the jar of walnuts. When you rinse the soaked walnuts to throw in the smoothie, then simply refill the container with more walnuts and warm water, cover and let soak until the next morning when you’re ready to put them in your smoothie – repeat!
Why soak them? Taken from the “Food Matters” Site:
“We are mimicking nature when we soak our nuts, grains and seeds. Nutritional inhibitors and toxic substances found in nuts grains and seed can be minimized or eliminated by soaking. These inhibitors and toxic substances are enzyme inhibitors, phytates (phytic acid), polyphenols (tannins), and goitrogens.”
Also see The Blender Girl's Description.
Greens: Great way to get your leafy greens in every day! I think we all know about health benefits of leafy greens, but here are just a few: antioxidants, calcium, vitamins A, K, C, folate, potassium, fiber. Read more here:
Ginger: Oh my. Ginger is like the wonder ingredient for healing! I use it for anti-inflammatory benefits. Also great for digestion and immunity. To make it easy to use, I rinse and cut up the raw ginger into the thumb sized pieces when I cut up the rest of my veggies for the week and if you use a Vitamix there’s no need to peel, put the cut pieces into a baggie you keep in the freezer with or near your frozen berries and grab a piece to throw in every day. Read more nutritional benefits here: