Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Green Monster – RRRROOOOARR!

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I’ve been making green smoothies for breakfast for almost a week now – and I don’t know how I lived without them!

BUT – in honor of my son, whose birthday is this week, and who LOVES to ROAR like a monster – I’ve been calling them green monsters (which this person does too, and she seems to have coined that phrase, so props to her).

I love me some spinach. Really, it’s my favorite vegetable. A little story for you – my dad hates spinach. But he had to eat it when I was a kid so I would eat it. When I was 16 I went for seconds on spinach and his jaw almost hit the table. Then the following conversation took place (or an approximation thereof):

Dad: “Wait a second, you like spinach?”
Me: “Uh, yeah.”
Dad: “WOOO-HOOO!” <reaches across table and scrapes the spinach off his plate onto mine> “I don’t have to eat it anymore!”

I’ve been hearing about these green smoothies, so I thought – why not? Spinach was on sale, and even if the smoothie does taste of spinach, I’m ok with that.

But, it doesn’t. It tastes like a smoothie. Strawberry-banana, in my case. Hubby even drank one, and declared it delicious.

So, besides the tastiness factor, it’s healthy too. I’m already feeling the results of that many vitamins and minerals hitting me first thing in the AM. (I’m taking the sinus infection out of the equation, that seems to be a coincidence.) Nothing else being different about my routine other than replacing breakfast with a green monster, in a little less than a week I feel a little more alert in the mornings, I’m drinking a little less coffee (baby steps), and I’ve lost two pounds. My skin is clearer.* It also inspires me to eat healthier through the day.

*Fair warning, this paragraph is going to be TMI for some of you. Concerning zits. Last warning, skip to the next paragraph if you don't want to know. So, as with any diet detox or increase of antioxidants, you may break out. I did. Not on my face, which looks great, but I got four monster zits elsewhere that are finally starting to calm down - two in my bra band areas (yes, my bras are clean), one on my stomach?!?, and one on the back of my neck (which went away quickly). This is unusual for me, so I'm guessing it has to do with the detox. Now that they're going away, my skin overall is looking better.

The only other downside of the green monster smoothies (besides the above paragraph): I just read the new Dirty Dozen of the fruit/veg world. Ugh, spinach, kale, and lettuce are all on there. I really hope my garden produces so I can get some pesticide-free greens this summer, and freeze some for this winter. Organic is so cost-prohibitive… but maybe there’ll be someone at the farmer’s market with a good price.

My current recipe:

1 handful spinach
1 banana
6 strawberries
¼ cup vanilla yogurt
1 Tbsp orange/pineapple juice concentrate

Combine everything in the blender and top off with water to make 2 cups. Blend well.

Have you had a green monster/smoothie? What’d you think?

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