I love my NutriBullet, and wouldn’t be without it but it’s important to remember that not everything you can pulverise in a cup is good for you: the key benefit of smoothie makers is their ability to reduce foods to micro-particles that bypass our lazy chewing and boost stressed digestion, improving bioavailability of nutrients; the key danger is how easy it is to overwhelm your blood sugar because of the fast absorption.
This means that making smoothies with more than one portion of fruit is unlikely to improve your health. High levels of fructose can be damaging in a number of ways; first of all, fructose completely bypasses satiety mechanisms in the body so it doesn’t ‘fill you up’; then it also acts a bit like alcohol in your system, increasing your chance of developing diabetes and fatty liver disease, finally it’s a useful fuel for metastasising cancer cells. Not great.
Fats, on the other hand, can be more tricky to absorb because they rely on the efficient action of your gallbladder which tends to decrease with age. Your gallbladder secretes an alkaline fluid called bile to emulsify fats in preparation for absorption – it works a bit like washing-up-liquid on a greasy roasting dish, breaking down fat globules into tiny particles that can pass easily through the gut wall. Smoothie makers do a very similar job, so they can also help make good fats more digestible. Boosting this step of digestion is providing a great service to your body because many of us
Bile is stimulated by the high acidity of semi-digested food emptying out of the stomach, but if stomach function is compromised due to stress, it can be coaxed into action with bitter, sharp and pungent flavours. Lemons and limes (including some peel), radish, bitter dark green leaves (kale, dandelion, beet leaves etc) and aromatic herbs and pungent spices can all work as bile stimulants – coffee too. Dried spices are OK if that’s all you have but it’s fairly easy to get hold of fresh ginger and turmeric which are both strongly anti-inflammatory. The benefits of these ingredients is that they tend to have anti-cancer properties too: the evidence for turmeric in cancer prevention is very strong and modified citrus pectin (found in citrus pith) has been shown to have anti-metastatic properties.
Fats carry nutrients between organs and into cells, they don’t aggravate insulin, help curb appetite and increase satiety, reduce inflammation and provide the building blocks of strong healthy cells. Many of us could benefit from a few more fats – especially omega 3 – which is why I’ve included flax seed oil in the recipe. (Sardines – another great source of omega 3 fats – don’t work too well in a smoothie!)
In my opinion, getting some good fats and pungent spices into your smoothie is far more important than jamming it full of so-called ‘superfoods’. Here’s where your NutriBullet can genuinely make a difference to your health. With that in mind, here’s my recipe for an optimal Well Cell Smoothie.
- Handful of greens – kale, rocket, spring, broccoli, celery, dandelion, etc.
- 1 measure of NuZest Good Green stuff – optional but recommended
- A good slug of bio-organic fermented whole milk dairy – yoghurt, kefir etc. – or coconut milk if you are avoiding dairy.
- One tablespoon of organic flax seed oil. (NOT Hemp – despite the picture!)
- One dessertspoon organic lecithin granules (10g) to help with emulsification (and gallbladder function).
- One chunk of citrus peel – lemon, lime, orange, grapefruit – about the size of a 50p piece.
THE OPTIONAL EXTRAS
- The add any (but not all) of the following, preferably in rotation to change each day:
- half a cup of berries or 1/3 cup of other fruits, preferably ones that happily grow in UK climate.
- 1/4 avocado.
- cucumber, courgette, marrow
- A few nuts – almonds, Brazils, cashews, macadamia, walnuts
- A tablespoon or seeds – flax, chia, hemp, pumpkin, sunflower.
- Spices – cinnamon, ginger, turmeric, chilli, caraway, cocoa/cacao – fresh if you can. Add a twist of black pepper if you are including turmeric. There is no need to peel ginger or turmeric – they can go in whole.
- Fresh herbs – thyme, basil, parsley, coriander, rosemary etc.
- Fresh tomato
- Water for drinking consistency
Although this may be a higher calorie drink than you are used to, the nutritional value will be vastly superior. I find a smoothie like this keeps me going almost all day until supper, with maybe a handful of nuts mid afternoon to fill a gap. The quantities don’t need to be rigid, and you can use soya yoghurt rather than dairy if you prefer.
If you want to make it last longer try adding the contents of a 1000mg Vitamin C capsule into the mix and refrigerate, though I don’t recommend keeping it for longer than 12 hours.
Adding Nuzest Good Green Stuff to your smoothie can cover a huge range of important nutrients – but check that you’re not overdoing it with supplements too.
Methionine Restricted Option
- Substitute soya yoghurt for dairy yoghurt
- Macadamia, almonds or peanuts – not Brazil nuts.
- Avoid the seeds
- all the rest is fine.