5 Affordable Superfoods to Add to Your Smoothie
I start off almost every single morning with a green smoothie. Smoothies are highly versatile and provide the perfect medium to experiment and just “throw stuff in”. Below you’ll find five superfoods that can supercharge your smoothie and provide you with huge nutritional benefits without sacrificing taste.
Aloe Vera is a wonderful plant full of nutritional benefits that go far beyond just relieving wounds and itches. Aloe vera is made up of water, 20 minerals, 12 vitamins, 18 amino acids, and 200 active plant compounds or phytonutrients. Aloe is also an adaptogen, which allows the body to adapt to external changes, resist illness and cope with stress (physical, emotional, environmental). Other additional benefits include
- Aids digestion and shown to alleviate both diarrhea and constipation and even cure acid reflux, ulcers, IBS, Crohn’s and Celiac disease
- Detoxifies the body
- Boosts immune system
- Reduces inflammation
- Anti-aging properties
- Great for the skin health
- Stabilizes blood sugar in diabetics
- Alleviates joint and muscle pain
- Accelerates recovery after exercise
Since aloe vera is a medicinal plan, you should only consume roughly once per week. You can use the gel from a 2 inch slice from an aloe stem in your smoothie. The video below provides direction on how to extract the gel from the plant. Aloe Vera plants are available online or at most greenhouses, home improvement stores and big box retailers such as WalMart and Kmart.
Black Seed Oil
According to hundreds research reports, black seed oil has been a proven remedy for almost everything. In fact, is believed that the Islamic prophet Mohammed called it "a remedy for all diseases except death." Below are just a few of the benefits of black seed oil:
- Cancer-fighting abilities
- Promotes liver health and helps prevents damage and disease
- Fights diabetes
- Promotes weight loss
- Restores hair loss
- Improves Skin
- Kills infections including MRSA
- Lowers blood pressure
To get the health benefits of black seed oil, aim to consume 2 teaspoons of black seed oil per day. Use one teaspoon in your smoothie twice a day, or include in other beverages including milk or concentrated lemon water.
Since broccoli stems are both less visually appealing and harder and denser than broccoli florets, they are usually thrown away when used in cooking or eaten raw. However, this makes them the perfect candidate to be blended and used in smoothies.
Broccoli stems contain the same nutritional value as the broccoli floret. 100 grams of broccoli stems contains 28 calories, 2.98 grams of protein, 48 milligrams of calcium, .88 milligrams of iron, 25 milligrams of magnesium, 325 milligrams of potassium, 27 milligrams of sodium and 400 IU of vitamin A. However, given that broccoli stems are denser than their floret counterpart, they provide higher nutrient value when using similar sizes. Additionally, don’t fofrget about the leaves of the broccoli plant which are also an excellent source of nutrients and have higher beta-carotene than the florets and contain phytonutrients that aren’t found in the stem or florets.
Next time you open up an avocado, think twice before you throw the pit away. Avocado seeds are rich in nutrients and have a long history of medicinal use in traditional cultures. They are full of antioxidants and, in fact, contain more antioxidants than the avocado flesh itself as well as most fruits, vegetables and healing teas. Further, the seeds have more soluble fiber than most any other food. In addition, avocado seeds are said to strengthen the immune system. Other benefits include:
- Improves digestion
- Reduces tumor growth
- Anti-aging properties
- Boosts heart health
- Promotes weight loss
- Provides large amounts of potassium (unripe avocados only)
- Strengthens immune system
Blend the pit in a very high powered blender (make sure the blender is highly durable because pits the pits are very hard and dense) and use 1/4th to 1/2th of the grated pit in your smoothie. You can also initially crush the pit in a plastic bag with a hammer and then put it into the blender since pits are too hard for most blenders.
High-quality eggshells contain 27 essential microelements. These are mostly comprised of calcium carbonate, a form and structure that’s very similar to our bones and teeth. In animal and human studies, eggshell calcium has been shown to increase bone density, lessen arthritic pain and even stimulate cartilage growth.
Make sure you thoroughly wash the eggshells before you throw in the blender (a vinegar and water solution will work) to ensure you kill any germs that might be living on the eggshell.