Florida summers are really hot. Some days we’re in the triple digits! It’s no wonder we like to have smoothies in my house this time of year to stay hydrated and boost our nutrition.
I like to choose ingredients that pack a great punch to put in our morning smoothies. The best way to start the day is with nutrients that satisfy our taste buds and provide energy.
Health Benefits of Arugula
Arugula is a cruciferous vegetable we should try to enjoy regularly. It’s a good source of beta carotene, vitamin C and K, calcium and it also provides some iron. It has a high water content so is great for staying hydrated in the summer months. It also has anti-inflammatory and detoxifying effects on the body, which is one of the reasons it increases energy. Recent studies have shown that the erucin found abundantly in arugula inhibits proliferation of cancer. The isothiocyanates found in arugula and other cruciferous vegetables work in a way similar to chemotherapy, and may stop the progression and/or migration of cancer without the toxicity. (Source)
Sweet, Sweet Pineapple
Pineapple is one of my favorite choices for naturally sweetening smoothies because of the digestive benefits it confers. Just one cup of pineapple provides all the vitamin C required for a day. It also provides potent antioxidants, and over 75% of the trace mineral manganese we need for healthy bones, teeth, skin, blood sugar levels and more! Studies show that those who consume at least 3 servings of fruit per day are 36% less likely to develop age-related macular degeneration, the leading cause of vision loss, than those who eat 1.5 servings or less. (Source)
Avocados & Its Healthy Fat
If there’s no fat with your vegetables, you are greatly reducing the amount of nutrients you are able to absorb (source). Choose the right type of fats to pair with your vegetables, such as avocado, coconut, olive, tallow, lard, etc. For smoothies, I like to use wholesome avocado and coconut as they impart the best flavors. The highest concentration of phytonutrients in avocados are closest to the peel. We tend to cut it in two lengthwise, then peel it with our hands. The nutrients found in avocado help with cardiovascular health, blood sugar control, insulin regulation, and fighting inflammation. Based on animal studies, it may also help prevent against arthritis! (Source)
Creamy Avocado Pineapple Arugula Summer Smoothie Recipe (Serves 1-2)
1 Cup Frozen Pineapple
1/2 Large Avocado
2 Cups Arugula
1 Cup Liquid (We like to use water or water kefir)
1. Add ingredients to blender so heaviest ingredients are on the top. Since I use a NutriBullet, that’s frozen pineapple, avocado, arugula, then the liquid.
2. Blend, put in serving cups and enjoy!
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