Green smoothies can be a wonderful way to add antioxidants and nutrients into your daily diet that you would not be getting otherwise. We love green smoothies and have been enjoying them for years because we believe in the benefits of eating healthy and well balanced. Below you'll learn more about green smoothies, how they can benefit you, and how to make one.
What is a Green Smoothie?
Keep in mind...if you can own the first meal of your day, you can win the dry eye battle!
You often hear that breakfast is the most important meal of the day. But WHAT you eat for breakfast is actually the most important part. Before we get into what a green smoothie is, let’s discuss what NOT to eat for breakfast...
Bacon, Sausage, Ham
Toast, Pancakes, Waffles, Bagels, Muffins, or Other Processed Baked Goods
Juices - Orange, Apple, or Any other
Sugar Filled Coffee - Instead, opt for Organic Black Coffee or Organic Green or Black Tea
This is a list of foods that are very processed or heavy to eat. This means you don't get your body started in the right direction if you eat these. You will feel tired, cranky, and slow after eating these in the morning, and this is the opposite of what you want.
Instead, you want to fill your body with nutrients first thing in the morning. There is no easier way to do this than by having a green smoothie.
So, what is that? A green smoothie is simply a smoothie that also contains greens (think spinach, kale, chard, or any other leafy green vegetable). This may sound horrible to you, but we can promise that green smoothies can not only be healthy for you, but incredibly tasty as well. By the end of this article, you’ll know exactly how to make one and exactly why you should!
This resource is necessary and so helpful because it details all of the healthy, tasty things you can incorporate into your smoothie. If you are just starting your green smoothie journey, we are going to walk you through some simple recipes at the end. But before we get into that, let’s discuss what to expect when drinking green smoothies for breakfast.
What to Expect When Drinking Green Smoothies
This is what your green smoothie journey might look like as time goes on:
Days 1-10 are usually UNBEARABLE.
You are NOT enjoying yourself.
Your body is adjusting to something new and healthier.
You may have LESS energy.
You may poop more...
You will want to quit...but DON'T...
It’s important that you persevere through the hard so you can begin to detox your body and feel better (overall and for your eyes).
Days 11-20 are UNCOMFORTABLE.
Your body is adjusting to your new breakfast/lunch in smoothie form...
You are starting to feel better and lighter...
You are beginning to gain more energy...
You are thinking more clearly...
Day 21+ is the UNSTOPPABLE stage.
This is where you need and CRAVE the green smoothies.
Going a day without them will make you feel uncomfortable.
You may then want to replace your lunch as well as your breakfast with green smoothies.
Your energy is at a max.
You're losing weight.
You love your new routine.
After this is when your life and health can really change for the better. After one month of having a green smoothie every single morning, you will notice the benefits. So, let’s answer a few questions about green smoothies so that you can get an idea of how to make one yourself.
Are Green Smoothies Really That Good For You?
Yes! Green smoothies are a simple way to pack in tons of nutrients and antioxidants first thing in the morning. Before the sun even rises, you can consume much of your daily need for vegetables without feeling like you just ate the entire veggie drawer. Antioxidants help fight free radicals in your body, leading to less inflammation and chronic disease over time.
Should I Put Spinach in My Smoothie? Frozen or Raw Spinach?
We recommend using organic raw kale, raw spinach, or any other organic raw greens you’d like. The reason we recommend raw is mostly because the taste will be superior to using the frozen variety of greens. Frozen greens are much more concentrated and therefore leave a much more intense greens flavor.
If you purchase a large bag or box of greens and find you cannot consume them all before going bad, consider taking half of the bunch and freezing it in bags (simply place the greens in a Ziploc bag and pop it in the freezer). This will give you that fresh greens taste without having your greens go bad on you before the end of the week.
Is it OK to Drink Green Smoothies Everyday?
Absolutely! We have at least one green smoothie every single day and, for most people, this is perfectly healthy to do. Of course, if you have a bleeding disorder, are on a blood thinning medication, or are prone to kidney stones and other kidney issues make sure to discuss green smoothies with your doctor.
The key to having a green smoothie every day is mixing up the ingredients you’re using, especially the greens. Spinach, in particular, is known to contain moderate amounts of oxalates, which have the ability to bind calcium and also the ability to accumulate in joints, muscles, and the kidneys. Over time, this can lead to kidney stones and a lack of calcium in the system, so you do need to be careful to mix up your greens.
Does Blending Destroy Nutrients?
While there are conflicting arguments on this, blending fruits and vegetables will not destroy the nutrients and antioxidants in these foods. Quite the opposite, actually. Breaking food down changes the availability of nutrients and allows them to be absorbed by our bodies much more readily. This can happen due to cooking, blending, chewing, etc. The better you’re able to break up fiber, the more nutrients will be available for absorption by your body. Unlike juicing, blending does not remove the fiber from your fruits and veggies either, so you're still going to get that benefit as well.
What is a Green Smoothie Made Of?
Now that we’ve answered a few questions, let’s get into how you actually make one. Making a green smoothie is actually very simple. First of all, you’ll need a blender (we love our Vitamix, but we’ve also had success with the Ninja and Nutribullet). We recommend adding liquid first (such as unsweetened almond or coconut milk) and then adding your greens (kale, spinach, mixed greens, arugula, parsley). Blend this, then add in any fruits or vegetables, healthy fats, protein powder, and other mix-ins. Download and reference the smoothie chart above for ideas!
A green smoothie contains a few simple things. First of all, you want to use an unsweetened liquid base (such as almond or cashew milk) - we always avoid dairy. Choose greens like spinach or kale and any other veggies you want to throw in. Next, use berries to add fruity sweetness and healthy fats (like avocado, nut butters, and unsweetened coconut) to increase the staying power. Truthfully, that’s all you need for an antioxidant packed smoothie!
*NOTE: For this smoothie, make it thicker as a bowl or thinner for a drinkable smoothie
Diet For Dry Eyes: Embracing Foods That Heal
Food can be the ultimate source of healing or the ultimate destruction of your body. Once you clear away the junk that’s clogging your body from years of poor diet (by the way, it’s not your fault... it’s the government, big pharma, and factory farms), you will unclog your mind as well. You’ll be able to tap into your healthiest and happiest you. What's the number one thing you can change about your diet to be happier and healthier? EAT MORE PLANTS. Plants help balance your hormones, maintain a stable blood sugar and pressure, and generally fuel all of our systems in a cleaner, more efficient way. A plant-based alkaline diet is the key to reducing inflammation in your body...and therefore your eyes!
What Are the Effects of Inflammation on the Body?
Inflammation wreaks havoc on your body, including your eyes, and leaves you feeling awful. There are so many reasons to decrease inflammation in your body. Here's just a taste of the diseases inflammation can cause:
Type 2 Diabetes
High Blood Pressure
Psoriasis and Eczema
Digestive conditions such as colitis and diverticulitis
How Food Makes You Feel
I know you may not be ready to tackle your entire diet all at once, and the great news is that you don't have to! Make small changes at a time, and notice how much better you feel.
Try this out… For a full day make a green smoothie for breakfast and lunch (you can download a handy chart by clicking the link above). Write down the answers to the following questions:
Did I feel tired all day?
Did I feel like I needed an afternoon nap?
Was I unmotivated to do my most important work at my job?
Did I poop?
Was I bloated?
Did I feel like drinking more caffeine to stay awake?
Did I experience cramping?
How did I feel the day after I ate all this?
Now eat eggs, bacon, and toast for breakfast, a hamburger and fries for lunch, and a chicken breast with potatoes for dinner. Answer the same questions above. How do you think you'll feel?
The educational handout you can download includes a green smoothie chart. Utilize this to create a fun, healthy, great tasting smoothie!