Green smoothies for great digestion

Creamy, cold, rich tasting but healthy -- I love green smoothies. I enjoy either a green smoothie or a green juice ev ery sin gle d...


Creamy, cold, rich tasting but healthy -- I love green smoothies.



I enjoy either a green smoothie or a green juice every single day. I love them and can't get enough. They make me feel energized and healthy. I'm always surprised to hear that people make my smoothie recipes. I rarely post smoothie recipes on this blog, mostly because they are a little out of scope for a baking blog. But I aim to please and I have been asked to share more of my smoothie recipes. I decided to share two vegan recipes which involve the same digestion-enhancing ingredients but are very distinct from each other in flavour. 



I have greatly improved my digestion over the last year or two and I think mango played a big part in that process as I always felt much better on days that I ate mangoes. When I say 'days where I ate mangoes', I mean I ate a LOT of mangoes. For the better part of last year I gave the Raw Till 4 lifestyle a go. For those unfamiliar with it, just google 'Freelee the Banana Girl' or watch a few of her youtube videos and you'll get the idea. Basically the goal is to eat vegan, mostly fruit and vegetables, grains and root vegetables. The vegan diet is very low fat and high carb, and you're encouraged to eat large portions of raw fruit daily before 4 pm, followed by a large cooked meal of grains or starches at night. You're also advised to eat a lot of calories in your first two meals of the day to ensure you aren't undereating. As much as in some ways I really enjoyed eating that way, I ultimately stopped following the diet a few months ago. Eating large volumes of fruit every day doesn't sit well with me to the extent that I've asked my doctor for a fructose intolerance test. Since reducing my fruit intake and eating a more starch based diet, I have found that I feel and look much better, so that's what I plan to stick to. If you haven't heard of the starch solution, google it too. Basically on that diet you also follow a low fat high carb diet, but with a greater focus on vegetables, grains and starches than on fruit. This seems to work much better for me so I am sticking with it. I still eat fruit every day but not nearly as much, and I now place greater emphasis on vegetables. 


What I will note is that the high fruit diet, especially eating lots of mangoes, seemed to greatly improve my digestion over time. I can say that I now have very consistent, good digestion. To some this may sound like no big deal but for me it is fantastic. I have suffered from lots of digestive issues since I started highschool 17 years ago. They only got worse when I became anorexic as a university student. Now that I am a healthy weight and eat a plant based diet consistently I can finally say I feel great most of the time. This is huge for me as I used to always feel terrible (stomach cramps, bloating etc.). 



Though I love fruit-only smoothies, I find that I feel about 10X better when I add greens to them. I make green smoothies all the time and usually load them with fresh and frozen fruit so that the green flavour isn't overpowering. My favourite greens for smoothies are baby spinach and baby kale. Both of these greens blend seamlessly into smoothies -- unlike mature kale which I find does not blend very well unless you have a pro-blender like a vitamix (which I do not). So, if you have an ordinary blender I highly recommend buying baby greens for your smoothies to ensure that the texture is smooth as silk. My other rule for smoothies is to ensure that you add a creamy fruit. My favourite fruits to add are fresh and frozen mangoes, frozen bananas, fresh ripe pears, and frozen berries. I love to use frozen fruit as it keeps the smoothie cold, gives the smoothie great ice-cream-like texture and masks the green flavour well. I also like to add strong accent flavours like ginger to my smoothies. Ginger is incredibly good for your digestion. I try to eat some daily to enhance mine. My favourite way to add it to a smoothie is to blend it thoroughly with the smoothie water and then strain it.


After a little effort you're left with this glowing yellow ginger extract. 


I then add that liquid to my smoothie so that the essence of ginger is infused without ginger's coarse texture which can be really unpleasant in a smoothie if its just added as is. 



So back to today's green smoothies. I have two recipes for you which involve mostly the same digestion-enhancing ingredients but are very distinct from eachother in flavour. Both feature mangoes and ginger (which are great for the skin and the stomach), and both are sweetened with frozen bananas which I adore in smoothies for optimal texture. One smoothie is vibrant green, the other bright purple. 


The green smoothie is my Spicy Mango Smoothie, the purple is my Wild Blueberry Zinger. Both feature a lovely spicy kick from the ginger. Both are super creamy and delicious. The only difference between the two is measurements of ingredients and blueberries. 


I love adding a new fruit to my go-to favourite smoothies to change up the flavour. If you're not into blueberries, raspberries or pineapple are also great in this. I hope you enjoy these! 

MANGO GINGER SMOOTHIE 
(vegan, gluten-free, grain-free)
  • 1 cup water
  • 1-2 inches fresh ginger, peeled
  • 1 cup baby greens (I use baby kale or baby spinach), packed
  • 1-2 fresh ripe mangoes, peeled, pit removed
  • 1 cup frozen bananas
  • 1 cup water or coconut water   

Add 1 cup water and the peeled ginger to a blender. Puree until smooth. Strain liquid into a glass through a fine mesh sieve. Clean blender to remove debris. Add the ginger extract back to blender along with remaining ingredients and puree until smooth. Enjoy

WILD BLUEBERRY ZINGER SMOOTHIE
(vegan, gluten-free, grain-free)
  • 1 cup water
  • 1-2 inches fresh ginger, peeled
  • 1 cup baby greens (I use baby kale or baby spinach), packed
  • 1-2 fresh ripe mangoes, peeled, pit removed
  • 1.5-2 cups frozen bananas (the more you add, the creamier it will be)
  • 1 cup water or coconut water   
  • 1 cup frozen wild blueberries 
Add 1 cup water and the peeled ginger to a blender. Puree until smooth. Strain liquid into a glass through a fine mesh sieve. Clean blender to remove debris. Add the ginger extract back to blender along with remaining ingredients and puree until smooth. Enjoy. 

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