10 Super foods to add to your smoothie
Smoothies are delicious, nutritious and, best of all, you can experiment and make up your own wonderful recipes out of all the ingredients that you love. Anything can go in a smoothie, so if you are looking to add a little extra nutritional punch to your favourite recipes, check out these ten super foods that can add a boost to your smoothies.
1. Aloe Vera
Aloe vera is usually thought of as an ingredient of skin care products, but did you know that you can eat raw aloe vera gel too? Aloe vera gel has been shown to be a true superfood that can lower cholesterol, stabilise blood sugar levels and improve the digestion. Add raw aloe vera gel to smoothies and you will get a whole load of amazing health benefits and it won’t change the taste of your smoothie at all.
2. Chia seeds
Chia seeds are great for adding extra fibre to your smoothies, and they also contain a good supply of omega-3 fatty acids. Add two or three tablespoons of chia seeds to any smoothie and you will get all that additional fibre, plus extra protein that will give a sustained boost to your energy levels for hours afterwards.
3. Acai Berries
Acai berries, which come from the acai palm tree, are high in the list of super foods, because of their extremely high antioxidant content, which can help fight cell damage caused by free radicals and delay the onset of the signs of ageing. Acai is also said to improve mental alertness and provide an energy kick that is as good as caffeine, but without all the side effects.
4. Camu powder
Camu powder is made from the dried fruit of the Camu-Camu berry, which is native to the Amazon rainforest. What makes camu powder so special is its extraordinarily high content of vitamin C, as well as other vitamins and minerals. Called by some people, nature’s own vitamin pill, camu powder provides you with an amazing boost to the immune system and can help ward off coughs and colds. As well as containing potassium, calcium, amino acids and beta-carotene, camu powder will also provide you with 60 times the amount of Vitamin C as an orange.
5. Coconut oil
Coconut oil is another ingredient that doubles as a super food as well as a beauty ingredient and it can be easily added to smoothies. Coconut oil is great for the heart, because it reduces the levels of bad cholesterol in the blood, and it also has anti-bacterial properties that will fight any infections in the intestinal system. Coconut also adds a creamy texture to green smoothies and thickens them up as well.
6. Bee pollen
Bee pollen is a rich source of B-complex vitamins, folic acid and amino acids, and it is also very good for helping people who suffer with allergies. Adding bee pollen to smoothies is great if you are on a vegetarian or if you follow vegan diet too, because it contains more amino acids than meat does.
Chlorella may not appear to be too appetising, after all it is an algae that grows in freshwater ponds, but chlorella is a super food that has taken the medical world by storm. Research in Japan has suggested that it could be used to fight many of today’s lifestyle diseases. It has been shown to stabilise blood sugar levels, reduce body fat and provide a boost to energy levels.
Spirulina is another algae that has gained a reputation as a super food that can be added to smoothies. Spirulina is brimming with nutrients, minerals, and lots of protein that will provide a boost to energy and brain power, and it’s good for the heart too. It’s also a good source of omega-3 fatty acids, calcium and iron.
9. Goji berries
Goji berries have been used in Chinese medicine for centuries and they are also said to be a favourite super food of Madonna and Mischa Barton. Add a couple of teaspoons of these to your smoothie and you will be getting a ton of minerals and vitamins that are believed to boost the brain activity, strengthen the eyes and boost the immune system. In China, Goji berries are also said to be the key to long life, so they’ve got to be worth a try!
10. Maca Powder
Maca powder is derived from a root of a plant that belongs to the radish family, which is grown in the mountains of Peru. This supplement for smoothies is said to be particularly good for providing energy and stamina and for helping the body deal with stress. It’s also said to be an aphrodisiac, so add a tablespoon of maca powder to your smoothies at the right time of day!