In my post called 5 Foods To Supercharge Your Morning Smoothie, I explained just how important it is to start your day off with a healthy breakfast smoothie consisting of fruit, greens and your choice of nutrient-dense superfoods.
Well, I have five more foods for you that I've chosen due to their unique nutritional profiles and their ability to improve your health in significant ways. Whether you suffer from hypertension, unstable blood sugar levels, lowered immunity or just low energy, there is a nutrient-dense food here just for you!
Maybe you don’t suffer from any of these health conditions; maybe you just want to reach a new level of vitality and well-being. If so, eating more of these superfoods is a great way to ensure that you're functioning at your peak.
So, let’s begin!
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This humble spice that most of us have in our cupboards is indeed a powerhouse of micronutrients. As an antioxidant it helps to protect the body from oxidative damage caused by pollution and toxins. It's also gaining worldwide recognition as an excellent food to help stabilize blood sugar levels, so if you find you are prone to a midafternoon energy slump and fierce sugar cravings, adding half a teaspoon of cinnamon to your smoothie will get you through your day sans coffee and chocolate.
Also known as “Inca Inchi” and “Mountain Peanut,” this Peruvian food has been used by indigenous tribes in the Amazon for thousands of years. Packed full of protein, high in calcium and with omega-3 levels that rival flaxseeds, sacha inchi is a great source of nutrients for vegans in particular. It can be purchased as a powder or oil, and it has a delicious peanut-buttery flavor.
Instead of the usual almond or rice milk, why not use coconut water as a refreshing base for your smoothie? Sweet, delicious and very high in potassium and other electrolytes, coconut water is ideal for fast hydration, which makes it a great choice in a post-exercise smoothie. The high potassium levels also promote heart and kidney health by helping to lower blood pressure.
Japanese Mushroom Extract
I know, it sounds like a weird thing to add to a smoothie. But the powdered or liquid forms of Japanese mushrooms such as shiitake, maitake and reishi can be added to smoothies in small enough doses that can’t be tasted. Though the dose is small, the benefits are very big when it comes to these powerful ‘shrooms. Anti-carcinogenic, antioxidant and adaptogenic, meaning they are able to help balance the body’s endocrine system, they're also very potent immune boosters with antiviral activity, so are ideal for anyone suffering from post-viral fatigue or recurrent infections.
Often thought of as a grain related to wheat, buckwheat is actually the seed of a plant related to rhubarb, and is therefore gluten free. Buckwheat can help stabilize blood-sugar levels and lower cholesterol, but its unique claim to fame is its high content of a bioflavonoid called rutin. Rutin has a wide range of antioxidant properties, and the best way to add it to smoothies is either to sprout it or simply soak the groats overnight and blend a handful with your other smoothie ingredients.