We’ve all heard the saying that age is just a state of mind. Well, many of us believe that this isn’t completely true because, well, biology. Nevertheless, trite old sayings aren’t necessarily without merit, and it’s a fact that how we choose to live will, to a large degree, affect our perception of how old (or how young) we feel, as well how much we enjoy being alive. We’ve all met people who just seem a lot older than their chronological age. They look old, they act old, and they have a certain resignation about them that says they’ve given up without much of a fight. They’ve resigned themselves to the inevitability of their mortality and seem to just go through the motions of surviving day after dreary day. Just surviving is a struggle when you make things harder than they need to be.
We also know people who seem a lot younger than they really are. It’s usually not a secret why they look and feel so good: They live a healthy lifestyle. They know that their attitude matters. They take care of their bodies and their minds, and it shows. They make a plan for good health and they just do it. That’s what all of us must do if we want to feel younger and enjoy life, because no matter the plan, the morning comes, the day passes, and before we know it, our time is up. Every single day is an opportunity to live for the better or for the worse. We make a choice even when we don’t consciously choose.
One essential part of our life plan is how we nourish or choose not to nourish our bodies. We also develop attitudes and habits toward food that either help us or hurt us. If we start each day with a cup of coffee and a candy bar, we will more likely than not bear the horrible long-term consequences of that bad decision. If, because we are short on time for breakfast, we feed our bodies with fast-food drive-through junk, in the end we’ve lost more time to bad health than we’ve gained.
Our food choices often do come down to just simply making the time to eat right. Even though we know dark leafy greens and veggies are good fuel, we don’t always eat them because we feel we don’t have the time. The meal that most of us seem to have too little time to get right is breakfast. Breakfast, we know, is the most important meal of the day, but it’s also the one that we least associate with eating leafy greens and vegetables. Why is that? Why do so many people feel that bacon is a better choice than broccoli? The truth is that it’s not. Veggies taste great, and eating them makes us feel healthier, more energized and alert.
You can enjoy all the benefits of adding healthy things to your breakfast. Honestly, you can do it in much less time than it takes to grab something from the fast-food drive through. Preparing and drinking a green smoothie is not just an efficient way to get nutrients into your body, it’s also an efficient way to eat and digest food. Try starting your day with one of the three smoothie recipes we have listed below and watch what a difference this makes in your life!
Experiment with quantities and don’t be afraid to make adjustments for taste. You might be surprised how good health is addicting and how good it feels start each day by going green.
1. To ensure a smoother smoothie, start with a liquid base. Add small amounts of ice (if desired) and then the leafy greens. After blending, stop and add a small handful of fruit and blend some more. Stop and add more fruit and blend again.
2. Choose frozen fruit over ice and blending will be easier. You can do this by spreading smaller pieces of fruit, such as banana slices or strawberry slices, on a plate or tray and placing them into the freezer until solid. Small pieces of fruit don’t take long to freeze, so that you can put the individual chunks into a small freezer bag, lay it flat, and press out excess air and freeze.
3. The expensive reality is that food such as fresh spinach doesn’t have a long shelf life. To save money, you can freeze spinach before it goes bad when necessary to avoid waste. Store it in a freezer bag and freeze. There is no need to defrost it before you make your smoothie.
3. By adding naturally sweet and fully ripe fruits to your green smoothie, you’ll enjoy the health benefits of natural sweetness over artificial or processed sugars. If, however, you find your smoothie is too bitter or sour, you can dribble in a bit of honey or real maple syrup to taste.
Are you ready? Let’s get our green on!
1. Green Is Good Morning Smoothie!
1 cup of coconut water
1 cup of organic kale
1 cup of organic baby spinach
1/2 ripe avocado, sliced into small pieces
1 large frozen banana (frozen slices)
1/2 organic mango (chopped and frozen)
A few small ice cubes or small handful of crushed ice
Place liquid, ice, and green leafy ingredients into a high-speed blender. Blend on medium for a few seconds, then on high for 30 seconds. Add the avocado and banana slices, and then blend on medium. Add the mango and blend on medium for a few more seconds and then on high for 30 seconds. Make any necessary adjustments and enjoy!
2. The Green Goblin Smoothie
1 handful of organic kale
1 handful of organic baby spinach
1 small organic orange, peeled and sectioned (remove seeds)
1/2 cup of organic frozen strawberry slices
1 cup of unsweetened almond milk (adjust liquid for desired thickness)
A few small ice cubes
Place liquid, ice, and leafy veggies into a high-speed blender. Blend on medium for a few seconds, then on high until blended. Add orange sections and strawberry slices. Blend again on medium for a few seconds and then high. After blending, stop blender to stir and then taste. Make any necessary adjustments for sweetness or to achieve desired thickness. Continue blending until thick and creamy.
3. Smooth Sailing Green Smoothie
1 cup of coconut water
1 cup of organic chopped mango
2 cups of organic banana slices, frozen
2 cups of organic baby spinach
1 cup of organic kale
1 handful of ice
Place the coconut water, ice, kale and spinach into high-speed blender. Blend until all lumps disappear and stop blender. Add banana slices and blend. Stop blender and add mango slices. Stop blender, stir and taste, make adjustments for consistency. Enjoy!
Green smoothies are some of the best “fast food” you can imagine. Put one in a travel mug and drink it in the car on the way to work. You are going to feel energized and ready to face whatever the day has in store for you. To your health!