Green Smoothies- why?

13 Ways Green Smoothies Help You Feel Great All In Less Than 13 Minutes

What if you could have a drink that would revitalize you, clear your system of unwanted toxins, and take less than 13 minutes to make? Green Smoothies can do just that, and much more.

20131121-082318.jpg

1. All you need is a blender and an open mind.

The great thing about green smoothies is that it doesn’t require much to get started. (You could invest in a smoothie maker for silky-smooth shakes, but that’s totally optional.) My biggest suggestion is to give green smoothies a try before you get a better blender. That way you’ll be convinced of their effectiveness.

2. Green Smoothies are quick to make.

If you’re in a rush you can get a green smoothie ready and blended in less than 13 minutes. Have your ingredients prep’d and ready and that time comes down to less than 5! You can just blend and go while you drink the green smoothie on the run. You could even make a green smoothie ahead of time. Then store half of it in the fridge it will still taste great one day later or take it to work with you in your shaker and enjoy!

3. You get a steady stream of energy. (No crashing!)

You won’t experience the up-and-down spikes that you might from an all fruit smoothie when you make it a green one. That’s because the fibre rich greens slow down the absorption of fruit sugars, providing you with just the right amount of energy and nutrition at a pace that your body really loves.

4. Green smoothies can be enjoyed year round.

When your garden is overflowing with greens, just whip up a couple of batches of green smoothies and enjoy these inexpensive nutritional drinks. You can also benefit from green smoothies in the winter, by using frozen fruits and greens that you might have preserved from the summer. Green smoothies provide you with a lot of options all year round.
Make friends with your local green grocer and buy his bargain selections!

5. Green smoothies are ideal for weight loss.

Whenever you feel a craving coming on, make yourself a green smoothie instead of indulging your craving. (If you’re having a lot of trouble with cravings, book onto our mini- workshops and we’ll eliminate them together.) Green smoothies help cut cravings because they are satisfying and provide your body with tons of nutrition.

20131121-082446.jpg

6. Greens are the most Under-appreciated Superfoods.

We all know green tea is great as an antioxidant. What is green tea made of, if it’s not greens? Skip the middleman and just increase your intake of greens. Green leafy veggies are great because they have tons of cancer fighting properties, immune system boosting vitamins and minerals. Upping green leaf intake has been shown to reduce heart disease and prevent other degenerative diseases. That’s what I call super.

7. Satisfy every taste bud.

If you have a sweet tooth you’ll enjoy making green smoothies with lots of fruit. If you want something a little edgier, you can add some Raw Chocolate powder and make it a nutritiously devious dessert. If you want to replace a meal, you can make savory green smoothies using ingredients like tomatoes, cucumbers, celery, and even spices to make it a satisfying hearty meal. If you like thick smooth soup you can add homemade stock and warm through. Not quite raw – but a fantastic meal with many more veggies than you might have had.


8. You Get to be a Green food chef!

Modern cooks use blenders to make their smoothies if you really get into it you can find fantastic machines – just make sure they’re are easy to clean. That’s an important factor for me in choosing smoothies over juices- what to do with the waste pulp?

9. Get your daily portion of fruit and vegetables.

One green smoothie probably contains more fruits and vegetables than most of us eat in a day. It’s one of the easiest ways of increasing your fruit and veggie intake. Our 5 a day target really isn’t enough. You should aim for 9 or 10 a day- mostly veggies. Plus you don’t need to carry an easily bruised banana around.

10. Chock full of amino acids.

If you’re worried that you’re not getting enough protein, increase your green smoothie intake. The more greens you eat, the more amino acids that you provide your body with. Your body uses these amino acids to produce protein. But remember there no complete vegetable proteins, you will need to add whey or casein protein powders to your smoothies. ( I don’t encourage you to use soy products)

11. Indulge your creativity and experiment.

You can throw almost any fruits or veggies into your blender and it will turn out tasting pretty good. (It helps if you follow some basic guidelines, of course.) Green smoothies give you the flexibility to create your own recipes, but they’re also a great way to use up leftovers.


12. Green smoothies are chimney sweepers for your body.

Green smoothies act as a chimney sweeping brush to flush out any waste. The more green smoothies you drink, the cleaner your bowels will become, and the better your elimination. If you want to feel great, make it easy for your body to take the trash out. Oh, and that helps with releasing weight too!

13. Green smoothies are a great addition to any eating plan.

What I like about green smoothies is that they can act as a “gateway drug” to raw foods. It’s so easy to just add a green smoothie to your current diet. There’s no reason not to give it a try. If after a couple of months you’re feeling great, you might choose to increase your raw food intake a little. That, my friend, is the power of green smoothies.

The Basic Green Smoothie Recipe

20131121-082712.jpg
Feel free to use this basic green smoothie base and experiment. (Remember #11!)

2 Bananas
1 Peach, apple or ripe Pear
5 Strawberries or other Berries
Handful Spinach (increase greens gradually over time, and you’ll find you crave more of them!)
1 cup water

After you make your first green smoothie, you’ll want to learn about trying new recipes and rotating your greens.

What Are YOUR Favorite Green Smoothies Recipes?

I’d love to hear what your favourite green smoothie recipes are! I know there are tons of variations out there, but which one is YOUR favourite?

Eat Clean, Train Smart, Feel Fantastic!

Like the post? Please follow my blog.

Thanks. Jax x

#1 Clean Eating – Sounds Great But How ?

Clean eating is simply “eating REAL food”, whole, natural foods such as fruits, vegetables, lean proteins, and complex carbohydrates. It also means staying away from the junk that typically makes up today’s standard diet. These types of food include man-made sugar, bad fats (hydrogenated, trans-fat), preservatives, white bread, and any other ingredients that are unnecessary. An easy way to remember if a food is clean is: “if man made it, don’t eat it.”

Fruits and Vegetables

20140518-155820.jpg

Fresh fruits and vegetables are loaded with health benefits and abundant in flavor. Not only do fruits and vegetables lower your risk for heart disease and stroke, they also lower blood pressure and help with digestive problems. Fruits and vegetables are also low in calories. Harvard School of Public Health suggests nine servings, or 4 1/2 cups, of fresh fruits and vegetables. Go for an assortment of colors when creating meals because different colors are markers of various nutrients and antioxidants.

Eat Your Way To Health

Eat a variety of veggies for a healthier you

The new food guidelines issued by the United States government recommend that all Americans eat between five and nine servings of fruits and vegetables each and every day.
The story is much the same in Australia.
When you first hear that you might think, hang-on, what happened to 5A Day? If you read papers about Nutrition you will notice that ideally you will eat more than 5 and some reports say 9 portions a day.

When you take into account how much a serving really is, it is actually quite easy to get nine servings of fruits and vegetables per day.

For instance, the recommended daily amount actually equates to a quite reasonable two cups of fruit and two and a half cups of vegetables every day. When you consider how many fruits and vegetables are available, and how easy it is to find fresh, in season, produce it becomes much easier to reach this daily goal.

Eating the same thing every day quickly becomes boring, so why not pick a variety of fruits and vegetables, in every colour of the rainbow and in every conceivable shape, size and texture, to give yourself a varied diet.

When shopping for fruits and vegetables, it is important to choose a variety of colours. This is for more than purely artistic reasons. Different colour fruits and vegetables have different types of nutrients, and choosing various colours will help ensure you have the vitamins and minerals you need each and every day.

Finding new recipes is another great way to ensure you get nine daily servings of fruits. Most of us like to try out new recipes, and they may provide the impetus you need to keep going.

New recipes also provide you opportunities to try new and unusual fruits and vegetables. For instance, everyone has eaten oranges, but have you tried kiwi or mangoes? How about spinach or kale? Trying new things is a great way to find new favorites while getting the best nutrition possible.

Many think a daily vitamin supplement/is the same? Actually, nothing could be further from the truth. That is because fruits and vegetables contain far more than the micronutrients identified by science and synthesized in vitamin pills. While these micronutrients, such as vitamin C, vitamin A and vitamin E are important to good health, so too are the hundreds of other elements, plus fibre and water, that are contained in healthy foods like fruits and vegetables. These elements are not available in any pill, they must be ingested through a healthy, balanced diet that contains plenty of fruits and vegetables.

In the long run, getting the nutrition you need from the food you eat is much less expensive, and much better for you, than popping vitamin pills every day.

So don’t give up – get your five to nine servings of fruits and vegetables every day. It may seem like a lot, but you can meet this quite reasonable goal simply by including fruits and vegetables as snacks, as garnishes, as side dishes and as meals.

Veggies in your eggs for breakfast, fruit and veggie snacks mid-morning and afternoon, a huge bouncy salad with lean protein for lunch then a new and exciting recipe for your main meal with lots of colourful veggies and a different free-range/wild protein source in the evening.

Go On – Get Your 9 A Day

Jax

follow me on Twitter jaxAllenFitness
for daily hints and tips

friend me on Facebook Jax Allen
for access to interest groups, pages and offers

9 A Day?

Eat a variety of veggies for a healthier you

The new food guidelines issued by the United States government recommend that all Americans eat between five and nine servings of fruits and vegetables each and every day.
The story is much the same in Australia.
When you first hear that you might think, hang-on, what happened to 5A Day? If you read papers about Nutrition you will notice that ideally you will eat more than 5 and some reports say 9 portions a day.

When you take into account how much a serving really is, it is actually quite easy to get nine servings of fruits and vegetables per day.

For instance, the recommended daily amount actually equates to a quite reasonable two cups of fruit and two and a half cups of vegetables every day. When you consider how many fruits and vegetables are available, and how easy it is to find fresh, in season, produce it becomes much easier to reach this daily goal.

Eating the same thing every day quickly becomes boring, so why not pick a variety of fruits and vegetables, in every colour of the rainbow and in every conceivable shape, size and texture, to give yourself a varied diet.

When shopping for fruits and vegetables, it is important to choose a variety of colours. This is for more than purely artistic reasons. Different colour fruits and vegetables have different types of nutrients, and choosing various colours will help ensure you have the vitamins and minerals you need each and every day.

Finding new recipes is another great way to ensure you get nine daily servings of fruits. Everyone likes to try out new recipes, and they may provide the impetus you need to keep going.

New recipes also provide you opportunities to try new and unusual fruits and vegetables. For instance, everyone has eaten oranges, but have you tried kiwi or mangoes? How about spinach or kale? Trying new things is a great way to find new favorites while getting the best nutrition possible.

Many think a daily vitamin supplement/is the same? Actually, nothing could be further from the truth. That is because fruits and vegetables contain far more than the micronutrients identified by science and synthesized in vitamin pills. While these micronutrients, such as vitamin C, vitamin A and vitamin E are important to good health, so too are the hundreds of other elements, plus fibre and water, that are contained in healthy foods like fruits and vegetables. These elements are not available in any pill, they must be ingested through a healthy, balanced diet that contains plenty of fruits and vegetables.

In the long run, getting the nutrition you need from the food you eat is much less expensive, and much better for you, than popping vitamin pills every day.

So don’t give up – get your five to nine servings of fruits and vegetables every day. It may seem like a lot, but you can meet this quite reasonable goal simply by including fruits and vegetables as snacks, as garnishes, as side dishes and as meals.

Veggies in your eggs for breakfast, fruit and veggie snacks mid-morning and afternoon, a huge bouncy salad with lean protein for lunch then a new and exciting recipe for your main meal with lots of colourful veggies and a different free-range/wild protein source in the evening.

Go On – Get Your 9 A Day

Jax

follow me on Twitter jaxAllenFitness
for daily hints and tips

friend me on Facebook Jax Allen
for access to interest groups, pages and offers

20130527-170712.jpg

3 Diet Rules U Need To Know

The 3 diet rules you need to know...
 
Ready for them?
 
I like to keep the diet "rules" simple, so here goes...
 
"Rule" 1 - Eat more...
 
Fruits and vegetables
Low-fat and low sugar dairy (like plain Greek yoghurt)
Whole grains (I like quinoa)
Lean protein – Grass fess or wild – free range when possible.
Salads, Mushrooms & Avacado
Beans and Legumes & Seeds
Nuts & Nut Oils
 
 
"Rule" 2 - Eat less...
 
Cereals and sweetened yoghurt
White carbs such as bread, pasta and rice
"Fake foods" like rice cakes
Snacks such as granola bars and wheat crackers
Salty or fried snacks
Vegetable Oils
 
"Rule" 3 - Eat a lot less often...
 
Sweetened drinks such as pop and iced tea
Alcohol & sweetened or lo-cal mixers
Bagels, muffins, cakes and biscuits
Butter, mayonnaise, and full-fat salad dressing
 
Hope this is simple enough to follow and get you started. : )

 

Sugar is the Enemy

New Studies Confirm the Surprising Relationship Between Sugar, Insulin Resistance, and Heart Disease.

IMPORTANT health information follows. More people need to know about this so please read this article and reblog or send those you care about the link to my blog. Heart disease is still the #1 killer in the western world… Accounting for 17% of all deaths (according to the WHO) and killing over 94,000 people in the UK every year. In 2006, heart failure cost the NHS £625 million, community based drug therapies cost £129 million (NICE 2003). In 2006 CHD cost £29 BILLION with 69 Million work days lost. (2004) As you can tell, heart disease not only kills but it weighs heavily on the economy and health care system of our country.

For years it was believed that eating too much fat was the cause of heart disease. And for that reason, the 1980s saw a a new “low-fat” movement. However, heart disease is still increasing. And so is obesity. If fat was the problem then why are people still having more heart attacks, getting fatter, and more of them developing Type 2 Diabetes?

Well, a big part of the answer is SUGAR.     As I’m about to show you in this article, sugar is a big reason why 1/3 of us have high blood triglyceride levels, making them (maybe even you) more susceptible to a cardiac event – heart disaster!     Don’t be fooled by low-fat products because if fat has been reduced or removed, then manufacturers know that something else has to take its place. In many cases, it’s sugar.

So why is sugar so bad?    Well, it can destroys every cell and system in your body and although I won’t be touching on every one its negative health effects here, I will be discussing the rarely talked about relationship between sugar, insulin resistance, and heart disease. After reading this article, I guarantee you’ll never look at sugar the same way again.

New Study Finds Sugar-Sweetened Beverages Increase Risk of Heart Disease This really comes as no surprise (after you understand how all this works) but a March 2012 study in the journal Circulation (USA) with 42,883 men found a significant and positive association between drinking sugar-sweetened beverages and the risk of coronary heart disease. In fact, the researchers revealed that for a one serving per day increase in sugar-sweetened beverage intake, the risk of CHD increased by 19%.

If you thought that drinking a pre-packaged fruit juice or soda pop was only doing damage to your waistline, then think again. This is just one of many studies showing sugar’s detrimental effects on the heart and cardiovascular system. As we’ll see below, fructose (which makes up roughly 50% of the sugar molecule sucrose as well as poisonous high-fructose corn syrup) is perhaps the main culprit here.

Why?    Well, among other reasons, the liver has a very tough time metabolising fructose (as opposed to glucose).  In fact, roughly 30% of fructose intake is converted to fat in the liver. One of the ways this happens is through a process known as de novo lipogenesis (or “new fat creation”). There’s dramatic rise in DNL after fructose consumption? Crazy, right?

Fructose and Uric Acid Not only does fructose (ie. sugar) add more fat (in the form of triglycerides) to your bloodstream – not a good thing by any stretch of the imagination – but also stresses your heart and vascular system by increasing blood pressure.

How?     Well, one of the by-products of fructose metabolism is uric acid. You may have heard of it before. It’s the precursor to and associated with gout. But in this case, uric acid increases blood pressure by preventing the normal way your blood vessels open and tighten to control your Blood Pressure.

Does that make sense?    The combination of increased fat production and the creation of uric acid are just 2 ways that sugar puts you at greater risk of heart disease. No wonder heart disease is still killing more of us than any other disease!

What About Fruit?    So, does that mean that fruit is bad for your heart too?   Well, first of all, fructose is only a portion of the sugar found in fruit. Some fruit have more, some have less. But either way, fruit is a natural whole food and if anything should be eaten in greater amounts to prevent heart disease.

Case in point… A 2011 study assessed the effect of low glycemic index fruit intake in type 2 diabetes and whether or not it increased the risk of cardiovascular disease (CVD). Temperate climate fruit, which are generally low GI, were the focus and included apples, pears, citrus fruit (oranges, tangerines and grapefruit), berries (strawberries, raspberries, cranberries, blackberries and blueberries) and the Prunus family (nectarines, peaches and plums).

Not surprisingly, the low GI fruit consumption is associated with lower blood pressure and CVD risk and supports a role for low GI fruit consumption in the management of type 2 diabetes and heart disease.    FANTASTIC!   This shows that WHOLE foods are an important ingredient to life-long health.

Fruits have a large amount of fibre, which naturally slows down the amount of fructose that reaches the liver at any given time. Therefore, the liver can more easily process the fructose from fruit, meaning less of it is converted to fat.   Fruit is also loaded with antioxidants, which are very important for fighting off free-radicals and preventing oxidative damage in your arteries.     So go ahead – get your 8-12 servings of fruits and veggies!    Yes I said 8-10 servings!!

The Beginning of the End –   To further understand how sugar eventually leads to a greater risk of heart disease, we need to start at the beginning. When you eat sugar (specifically glucose), it causes a spike in blood sugar. The greater the glycemic index (load) of a food or meal, the greater that spike will be.     Generally, refined grains (white bread, pasta, pastries, etc…), sweeteners, and sweets are the major culprits here.

But, your body is amazing.  It knows that high levels of sugar in your blood is dangerous, your pancreas produces and then secretes a hormone called insulin. Insulin is like a VIP tour guide that takes excess blood sugar and brings to your muscle, fat, and liver cells. Without insulin, blood sugar (glucose) almost always would not be able to enter and do its job in your cells.   So, in order for things to operate smoothly, your pancreas must first produce and secrete insulin and, second, your cells must be “sensitive” (or responsive) to it.

However, eating a lot of sweet/sugary foods creates a cascade of events that can eventually lead to a condition called “Insulin Resistance” or Diabetes.   When this happens, your cells are no longer sensitive to insulin.   So, no matter how much insulin you produce it has no effect.

The reason?  You’ve simply been exposed to too much of it over the years and no longer respond to this important hormone. This creates a deadly scenario… You have sugar in your bloodstream but cannot store or move it into your muscle, liver, or fat cells, which means you have elevated blood sugar.    If, your blood sugar remains high for a prolonged period of time, disastrous consequences can occurr.

Too much sugar   EATS AWAY   at your blood vessels, nerves, and other tissues in your body causing eye, nerve and digestive damage

BAD News.   But that’s just the beginning.    Let’s assume that you have become insulin resistant (that you have Diabetes) like the 2.9 million other sufferers in the UK alone.

How Insulin Resistance Can Hurt Your Heart    Under healthy conditions, insulin stores sugar in your cells.   It also encourages fat storage too. You might not like that about insulin but that’s the way it goes.   If you don’t want as much insulin circulating in your blood, and less sugar stored as fat, then don’t spike your blood sugar with poor quality foods, biscuits and sweets.

When insulin resistance occurs, your cells NO longer respond to insulin.  Therefore, no sugar can be stored.  At first glance, if you want to lose weight you might think that’s a good thing but let me explain why it’s not.   Apart from the fact that too much sugar in your blood WILL ruin your arteries, nerves, and other precious tissues… It also increases triglycerides (fats) in your blood, raising your risk of heart disease.   In fat cells – insulin resistance triggers an increased release of a hormone (HSL), which increases fat breakdown into free fatty acids. These free fatty acids (FFA) then move to your liver.   In the liver FFAs can either be converted to energy in your muscles  OR… Converted back into triglycerides for storage OR incorporated into dangerous VLDL particles. (High blood triglyceride levels)

Side note:   When your doctor measures your “blood triglycerides” he/she is measuring the amount of triglycerides in VLDL particles in your blood.  A higher the number means you’re at greater risk of heart disease.

Not only does insulin resistance increase your blood triglycerides by increasing VLDL formation but it also activates all of the fat-forming genes in your liver.  This essentially means that more processes occur to convert sugar into fat, rather than energy.

Similarly, HYPERGLYCEMIA (too much sugar) causes enzyme processes in the liver to favour cnverting excess sugar to more fatty acids. They are converted into triglycerides (yet again) rather than being burned as energy.  All of these events lead to one major problem…                         High blood triglyceride levels (aka. VLDL) which is big time risk factor for heart disease.

Thankfully,   this level can easily be attained through lifestyle changes such as diet, weight loss, and exercise.

The Take Home Message…… SUGAR – directly related to diabetes and weight gain – could be such a big problem for your heart as well?

But after reading this article, I’m sure you can see why sugar (yet again) should have a very very small place in your diet.

Disease doesn’t just happen. Genetic factors are extremely minimal (5-10%) in comparison to what really matters…

What you’re putting in your mouth and whether or not you’re moving your body.

If you want to avoid heart disease and diabetes (insulin resistance), then start by limiting your sugar intake.

Doing so will also improve all other aspects of your health as well!

Don’t add sugar to your food, never eat anything with HFCS, avoid added Fructose. Diabetic Sugar is often made from corn syrup (Poisonous stuff).

Look at labels on packages and don’t buy anything with sugar as the first few ingredients.

Example – Just have a look at flavoured yoghurts… if Sugar is the first ingredient – it’s mostly sugar – not yoghurt!!  Buy plain greek yoghurt and add your own fruit – fresh or frozen –  kind to your heart and completely   YUMMY!!

JaxAllen  miclub Cheltenham   follow me @miclubtweets