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Drink your veg!

By | September 07, 2014

Drink-your-veg!

Looking for new ways to hit your daily target? Follow our advice and try these smoothies - just blend and drink!

Our smoothies are an update on traditional juices – combining leafy greens, veggies and fruit, and packing all the natural fibre and nutrients into the glass. They’re also lower in sugar.This means you get many of the benefits of consuming the whole fruit and veg, unlike a juice – which strips out valuable fibre, exposes the natural sugars and is high in acidity that can cause dental erosion.New research suggests we should be aiming higher than 5-a-day for optimum health, and most of that total should be made up of vegetables. Smoothies are an easy way to help reach your target, and a good way to include strong tasting varieties, such as bitter leafy greens, as you can combine them with fruit and sweeter veg like carrot and beetroot.

Blending the whole fruit and veg means they’re easy to digest and makes the nutrients more accessible, so they’re particularly beneficial if you’re unwell. Plus, making your own means you know exactly what’s in your drink – no preservatives, colours or flavourings.Despite the benefits, the best way to consume fruit and veg is in its whole form. So enjoy a smoothie but don’t neglect to bite into a crisp apple or crunch a carrot – it’s better for your health, your teeth, and also gives your jaw a great workout!

What’s in a colour?

Green smoothies are a great source of minerals, especially the bone-builders calcium, magnesium and phosphorus.

Orange smoothies are vital for the immune system, packing in vitamin C and beta-carotene.

Red/purple ones are packed with heart-friendly plant compounds and likely to be rich in folate and potassium.

HOW MANY PORTIONS?

Smoothies count as a maximum of 2 of your daily target (regardless of how much you drink), as long as you include:

  • At least 80g of one type of whole fruit or vegetable and at least 150ml of a different variety of 100% fruit or veg juice.
  • Or at least of 80g each of two different whole fruits or vegetables.
  • Boost the benefits
  • Drink your smoothie within two hours of blending it, so that the nutrients are at their peak.
  • Morning is the best time, as your body absorbs liquid more easily after sleep.
  • Use fresh fruit and veg (or frozen out of season). Simply scrub clean – the peel and rind are rich in vitamins and fibre (citrus rind and pips should be removed as they can be bitter).
  • Add extra oomph
    - Fill up on fibre. Add 1 tbsp of ground linseeds or oatmeal.
    -For more omega-3 fatty acids, add chia seeds, hemp seeds or an omega-rich oil.
    - Max the minerals. Add spirulina powder for iron, pumpkin seeds
    - For zinc - pack in protein. Add whey powder, hemp protein powder, tofu or ground nuts. Or blend in some yoghurt, milk or cottage cheese.
    - Add vitamins. Avocado is rich in vitamin E – a great cell protector.


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