There's no question about it. It can be such a challenge to eat vegetables. Their taste leaves much to be desired and it takes an experienced cook to make vegetable dishes palatable. Fruits, on the other hand, are easier to eat. Their naturally sweet, luscious taste is appealing to most taste buds. Plus, they can be picked straight from the tree or from the grocery shelf and can be munched on anytime.
For optimum health, the Harvard School of Public Health recommends at least "nine servings (at least 4 1/2 cups) of fruits and vegetables a day." Unfortunately, most individuals do not even come close to the minimum requirement of 2 1/2 cups!
One of the best and most popular ways to address this deficiency is to combine fruits and vegetables, most commonly leafy greens, in one delicious drink called the green smoothie. This health drink is basically just like a fruit smoothie, but with veggies like kale, broccoli, spinach or lettuce thrown in. It's a tried-and-tested method of meeting an individual's fruit and vegetable requirement.
There is actually no one method of making that perfect green smoothie. The variations of fruit and vegetables that can be thrown in to suit one's discriminating tastes are as many as the number of leafy greens and succulent fruits available at a particular season.
Here are some tips and best practices to help you make that delicious and healthy green smoothie:
Invest in a good blender. If you want to make green smoothies a healthy part of your daily diet, you are going to need a powerful blender since the frequent grinding is going to be hard work. However, you don't have to make this a major requirement. Make do with what you have for now. You'll eventually have to shop for a new one anyway once your current one gives out.
Prepare your smoothie by first adding about 1-2 cups of water, lettuce (about 1/2 to 1 head will do) or other leafy greens. Put in about 4-5 pieces of fruit. Bananas, apples, oranges, mangoes, papayas, strawberries or any other fresh fruit in season are perfect. If you can't find them fresh, frozen alternatives are good, too.
Blend these together for a couple of minutes or until they are of the right consistency.
If this is your first time to try this beverage, add more fruits than vegetables so that it becomes sweeter and thus easier to drink. As you get used to guzzling down these smoothies, you can even out the ratio to fruits and vegetables. For green smoothie veterans, going for an all-veggie green smoothie is a great way of maximizing the power of those leafy greens against cardiovascular and gastrointestinal diseases, lowering hypertension and protecting or fighting cancer.
You can drink from one to four quarts of green smoothie a day. However, like any regular consumption of fruits and vegetables, the general guideline can be summed up in this line: The more, the better.
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