By: Dr. Jessica McCord, Guest Blogger
It’s been almost 2 years since I made my first green smoothie, and you can bet that I celebrate that anniversary! I would never have thought that such a simple thing could change my health, my eating habits, my awareness (of what goes in my body), and my overall mood and well-being.
I used to drag myself out of bed, rush around the house with no time to spare, except for grabbing the all-important large mug of coffee full of creamer and sugar. No breakfast, perhaps a sugary snack sometime in the morning, followed by my afternoon ritual of Coca-Cola or a super-sweet White Mocha from Starbucks. I needed my caffeine, I didn’t have time for breakfast, and I rarely ate lunch. When I did, it was usually something processed and microwaved with very little nutritional value.
I came home each day feeling tired, battled frequent headaches, caught every little cold that crossed my path, had terrible constipation and bloating (you ladies know what I’m talking about) and didn’t sleep very well. I ate out most evenings, had little motivation to work out, and felt lethargic a vast majority of the time.
One day, Lisa (owner of this blog and one of my oldest and dearest friends) pointed out a few questionable ingredients in my sacred coffee creamer. We talked about alternatives and sweeteners. She knew I needed to take baby steps away from my caffeine overload so she gave me advice she knew I could handle at the time.
It didn’t take long for me to start questioning other parts of my diet such as the amount of sugar in my routine, the lack of good healthy foods, and my continued exhaustion. Changing my coffee creamer and sweetener was a good first baby step, but I knew I needed to do more.
Lisa talked me through my first green smoothie, and although I’ve made little tweaks here and there, it’s remained mostly the same over these past few years. I found a way to get a healthier version of my caffeine in there that even has anti-carcinogenic properties (green tea powder, or Matcha).
I know I’m a nerd for getting excited to wake up in the morning to make my smoothies, BUT they have changed my life. First, it’s amazing that I am excited to get up in the mornings (ask my husband, he has often incurred my morning wrath). I now wake up 2 hours before I have to be anywhere so I have time to make my smoothie and enjoy it while I relax and do some reading to begin my day.
Not to mention, I now visit my bathroom like clockwork…every morning. Every morning! That’s right, no more regular constipation and bloating! I leave the house with a happy tummy, a good head-start on my fruits and veggies for the day, and a desire to keep my daily habits in line with my awesome beginning to the day.
I never drank water before I began my smoothie regimen. Now I drink it all the time. Somehow downing a Coke and a latte every afternoon lost its luster knowing how great I feel without them! My body loves me for listening to it.
It’s so empowering knowing where my food comes from, reading labels, and taking on healthy habits. My morning smoothies are the way I begin my day with health and it truly carries through the rest of my day.
I rarely get headaches or colds, my stomach is regulated, I have way more energy, and I sleep great. Eventually, I started running and doing yoga because I feel motivated to compliment my healthy eating habits with some exercise. My skin is glowing and I feel wonderful… all from a little smoothie. What an easy and satisfying way to get on the path to better health!
I encourage everyone to try it out, so here’s my recipe below. Try out different fruits and combinations to suit your style. That’s the great thing about smoothies – you can personalize them to your own needs and tastes.
Jess’s Green Smoothie
All ingredients are organic…it’s worth it!
Place the following in your blender:
- Handful of spinach (or your favorite greens)
- Handful of baby carrots
- 1 scoop of Amazing Grass GreenFoods (I use chocolate or the berry blend, but you can choose your favorite flavor)
- 1 cup or so of SoDelicious Original Coconut Milk (I’ve tried the unflavored, that’s good too)
- I scoop of Natural Factors Whey Protein (unflavored) Helps keep you full until lunch!
- A tablespoon of honey (I do this because I buy local honey and it helps with my allergies)
- I teaspoon of green tea power (Matcha)
- About a cup of frozen mixed berries
Then blend and enjoy! Cheers to your health.
Jessica just recently graduated (with honors) from UNM with her Doctorate in Special Education. When she’s not drinking green smoothies, she spends her time trying to figure out how to save the world one student at a time. You might also find her riding bikes with her police officer hubby, playing with her two adorable dogs Bella and Indigo, and sometimes you’ll find her rollerblading along the Rio Grande with me.