Having been brought a lovely large bag of spinach by my grandmother and being inspired by some of the smoothie recipes I’ve been looking at recently…I decided to give it a go. Now I’ve made smoothies in the past but they’ve always been fruit ones. I’d never tried the vegetables option…until now.
Smoothies can be great for helping you get more fruit and vegetables in your diet and also good to help introduce different fruits and veggies into your day. The one I made is a good source of iron, folate, zinc, magnesium and potassium.
I don’t have a proper smoothie maker, and to be honest I’m not a fan of having multiple kitchen gadgets that clutter up the worktops (my hubby may beg to differ on that), so I just have a food processor, and it did a great job.
So first thing in the morning I felt inspired, here’s the recipe I tried out:
1 large handful of baby spinach
1 medium banana
1 kiwi fruit
Blend up with a splash of water. Here’s how mine looked….I know it looks very green but it was surprisingly tasty. Be inspired, get creative and let me know how your smoothies turn out!
If you often wake up feeling tired or hit that mid afternoon slump then this post is for you…. if you’ve been up most of the night with a little one, you’ve been working long hours or just need a pick me up, read on!
If you want to have more energy you need to give your body regular energy, through food – so eating 3 meals a day at the very least and actually snacking can help keep you going. It’s just important to make sure your overall calorie intake is not too high and that those snacks are healthy.
Breakfast is Key:
Skipping breakfast has been shown to increase fatigue, which makes a lot of sense. Overnight you fast, which means our blood sugar levels come down, as sugar is the body’s energy source when levels are low you can feel tired, moody and out of sorts. Breakfast kickstarts your metabolism so not only will it boost your energy but it can also help you lose weight. Good choices include wholegrain breakfast cereals with fruit and yoghurt, poached egg and tomatoes on wholemeal toast or porridge with fruit and nuts. The B vitamins in bread and cereals help you release and use energy.
Many people I meet have cut the carbohydrates out of their diet. Carbohydrates are the bodies preferred energy source, much like the petrol in a car they fuel you. Yes if you overeat them you will gain weight but sensible portions of them at your meals will help boost your energy. Choose wholegrain versions as research shows these are the healthier options and links them to increased energy.
Get your Fruit on:
Fruit and Vegetables are the true superfoods. They provide vitamin C, magnesium and other micronutrients that help your body release energy from food. Vitamin C deficiency is linked to fatigue….so eat more to energise yourself. Aim for over 5 portions a day, do this my having at least 1 portion per meal and then snack on them too. Add fruit to cereals, vegetables to omelettes, salad with meals, fruit and custard as dessert, dried fruit and nuts as a snack.
Steer clear of sweet treats:
It can seem like the best thing to do is to eat more sugar to get more energy, but in fact the opposite is true. Eating sugary snacks raises the sugar levels too fast causing a temporary energy boost followed by a sugar slump. Instead stick to regular meals and healthy snacks….sounds a bit boring but it really does work!
Eat Low GI:
Eating foods that keep your blood sugars lower for longer can keep your full up for longer. Try wholemeal foods, oats, yoghurt, lentils beans and pulses.
Give it a try…it may just surprise you 🙂
Freelance Dietitian specialising in helping those with Eating Disorders and a Media Spokesperson for the profession.