Immunity Boost Smoothie
Smoothies are a great way to up your fruit and veg intake and at the same time, make up a delicious, nutritious meal-drink. I prefer to eat my food, but sometimes it’s just easier to blend everything together! It’s simple to make and great for a healthy breakfast on-the-go. Moreover, if you’re trying to include more plant-based foods in your diet, a smoothie is the perfect way to incorporate raw ingredients. I love to snack between breakfast and lunch and so a brunch smoothie is a fab idea and you can make it as wholesome as you like.
Today, I’ve opted for an antioxidant-rich smoothie containing a combination of tropical fruits and plant-based milks for additional protein and good fats. It’s an entirely vegan recipe, which can be amended to suit your dietary needs. This recipe is a great immunity booster and is perfect to have before or after a workout to keep you energised.
Here’s how to make a healthy smoothie…
Smoothie Ingredients & Recipe
2 cups of Pineapple chunks
Flesh of 1 Orange
Handful of Blueberries
1 cup of Milk – I use a splash of coconut milk and a splash of cashew milk
Ice cubes (optional)
Place all ingredients in a blender and include some ice-cubes if you like. Blend until smooth and pour. If you wish to prep your smoothie ahead of time, try to consume within 24 hours.
Nutritional Value & Health Benefits
Pineapple is an excellent source of vitamin C and manganese – antioxidants which help boost the immune system. What’s more, vitamin C aids collagen synthesis, while manganese strengthens bone health. Pineapple provides dietary fibre for a healthy gut. It contains bromelain, an enzyme which breaks down protein and aids digestion, and has anti-inflammatory properties which may help reduce swelling and bruising.
Oranges are also a great source of vitamin C (vital for collagen production and healthy skin). They also contain thiamin (vitamin B1), folate and potassium. Despite their sugar content, they have a low glycemic index. Additionally, oranges are a good source of fibre, which helps digestive function.
Bananas provide fibre, potassium, vitamin B6, vitamin C and various antioxidants. They’re a rich source of carbohydrates, including high quantities of soluble fibre which is soothing to the gastrointestinal tract and as a result, normalises bowel function.
Bananas are usually the go-to pre-exercise snack to fuel a workout, which is probably based on their serotonin and dopamine content (which can help with oxidative stress) and electrolyte potassium (which helps conduct nerve and muscle contractions and regulates the flow of nutrients in and out of body cells).
Blueberries are loaded with antioxidants, fibre, manganese, vitamin K and vitamin C (which helps protect against cell damage and aids iron absorption). Moreover, anthocyanin (the antioxidant which gives blueberries their colour) has inflammation-fighting and cell-protecting properties.
Coconut flesh is rich in fibre, vitamin C, B vitamins and minerals including iron, calcium, magnesium and phosphorous. It also contains significant amounts of fat, mainly medium chain fatty acids (MCFAs) and in particular lauric acid, which has antibacterial and antiviral properties. MCFAs go directly from the digestive tract to the liver where they’re metabolised, providing you with an energy boost.
Cashew milk is cholesterol and saturated fat free. It’s also high in protein – depending on milk consistency. Furthermore, cashew milk contains vitamins E and K.
I always use plant-based milks. Below are some options I personally recommend:
Rude Health Coconut Drink – Ingredients: spring water, organic rice, organic coconut milk, sea salt
Plenish Cashew Milk – Ingredients: filtered water, cashews, sea salt