I pretty much have a smoothie every morning for breakfast. I love fruit, I love to drink a delicious concoction through a stainless steel straw when I’m on the go, and I love using my smoothie as a vehicle for a ton of amazing nutrients and superfoods first thing.
I’ve been making a version of this smoothie for a few years, and I must admit: I have noticed a difference in my mood, my energy levels, and even maybe my metabolism. Those of you who do Little Green cleanses know that we’re all about bio-individuality. Food and nutrition is not a one-size-fits-all. Over time I’ve refined what superfoods and adaptogens I take based on how I feel. I’ll try one for a few months, and if I can see improvement in stress levels, emotional wellbeing, or something physical, than I adapt my smoothie regimen accordingly.
Sometimes I make a smoothie in a glass, and other times I make a smoothie “bowl”, where I add in granola, fruit, and other crunchy toppings. In the smoothie itself, I’ll vary the fruit. They often include blueberries and banana. Other times I crave peach, or dragon fruit. I usually add a tablespoon of peanut or almond butter. My liquid is often almond milk, but orange juice and coconut water are also in the rotation.
The one constant, though, is that I ALWAYS add loads of superfoods and adaptogens. Here are my regulars, and why I include them:
- Ginger. I keep frozen ginger in a ziplock, and grate it fresh, right into the vitamix. Ginger is an anti-inflammatory and antibacterial, and it also reduces nausea. Studies have also shown ginger to be especially effective in destroying ovarian cancer cells. Plus, it adds flavor!
- Turmeric. This, too, I keep frozen and grate into the smoothie. Turmeric fends off Alzheimer’s disease and is a brain-protecting agent. It is an anti-inflammatory and has success in treating menstrual difficulties, hemorrhage, toothache, chest pain, and flatulence. It can prevent certain cancers, and it can even destroy mutated cancer cells so they cannot spread throughout the body, preventing tumor growth.
- Hemp Hearts. If you’re trying to reduce your meat intake, hemp helps you get a good dose of protein! Hemp is high in omega 3 & 6 fats, antioxidants, fiber, iron, zinc, Vitamins B1, B2, B6, D, and E, enzymes, and magnesium. It helps you sleep. And it helps to provide continuous energy throughout your day.
- Flax Seeds. Flaxseed is an excellent source of essential fatty acids (omega-3), and keeping your brain healthy (twice as much as fish!) It’s anti-inflammatory, and packed with vitamin E. It is high in lingans (an anti-oxidant) and helps balance hormone levels. Flaxseed makes your skin glow, and is high in fiber.
- Vitex. Vitex promotes a healthy mind and body throughout the menstrual cycle and during the transition into menopause. Traditionally used for maintaining a healthy hormone balance & keeping your cycles regular.
- Ashwagandha. This adaptogen reduces blood sugar levels and has anti-cancer properties. It’s known for reducing cortisol levels, reducing stress and anxiety, and symptoms of depression.
- Açaï. I’m in love with this superfood because of it’s low sugar content. Açaï is a high energy food, and is one of nature’s most concentrated sources of antioxidants (and has twice the amount of blueberries.)
- Rhodiola. This root is an adaptogen used for increasing energy, endurance, strength, and mental capacity. It’s adaptogenic properties help the body adapt to and resist physical, chemical, and environmental stress.