International Green Smoothie Day

Alright, so you’ve read my 13 Witchy Ways Green Smoothies will rock your socks post. You’ve learned about the difference between smoothies and juicing. You’ve probably heard me talk about green smoothies on Twitter (follow me, I’m @hyperlinked) and Facebook.

But are you ready for International Green Smoothie Day – August 15th?

Green Smoothie Day

It’s time for the second annual green smoothie celebration. I’m one of the sponsors of International Green Smoothie day, so if you’ve been itching to work with me one on one, you could win a session as part of the celebration! Sign up and you’ll also get a chance to win a brand new blender. To make more delicious green magickal “goop” of course. :)

Enjoy it!
Love, Nathalie

Blender or Juicer: Is it better to juice or to drink smoothies?

Are you overwhelmed by the number of accessories and machines “Raw Food Gurus” tell you are needed to make eating a raw food diet successful? With the help of this guide you’ll be able to decide whether you should invest in a blender or a juicer, and figure out which one is more likely to give you the biggest nutritional bang for your buck.

Juicing vs. Blending

The Benefits of Blenders and Smoothies

1. Smoothies keep longer in the refrigerator than juice does.

Smoothies contain all of the fiber that the fruits and vegetables initially came with, albeit in a blended form. Because everything is still in the drink itself, you can actually store smoothies longer without losing too much nutritional value.

To preserve a smoothie you simply need to put it in a glass container like a mason jar filled to the brim. This keeps the air out, so that the smoothie will not oxidize. Seal the jar and drink it within 24 to 32 hours. You might need to shake it if the water separates.

2. The fiber of a green smoothie acts like chimney sweepers.

Smoothies have a cleansing effect on the bowel. Since smoothies still contain all of the fiber from the fruits and vegetables, you get a chimney sweeping effect. One of the reasons I’m so fond of smoothies is that they keep me regular, and cleanse my body on their way out.

3. Sugar is absorbed slower because of the built-in fiber.

Green smoothies allow you to have fruit without experiencing the aftermath of a sugar spike and crash. The fiber will keep the flow of sugar regular as your body digests it and it enters the bloodstream. Fruit smoothies will have the effect as eating whole fruits, so you may experience a bit of an up and down, but nothing compared to fruit juice. (By the way, store bought fruit juices are the worst, and I don’t recommend them at all.)

4. Commercial smoothies are “tainted”.

Most store-bought or juice-bar smoothies are less than ideal. These smoothies are made with frozen fruit, with store-bought sugary juices and liquors for added taste. Most store-bought smoothies are packed with sugar so that they taste extra yummy. These smoothies also tend to include dairy of a questionable quality and source.

Though commercial smoothies are tainted, commercial juices are even worse. Bottled juices are almost pure sugar with very little nutrition at all. They are also high in calories, and just plain bad for the health.

5. Blenders are easy to clean.

A blender is easily cleaned by running it under the tap. Or adding a bit of water and soap to the blender and pushing the clean cycle button for a few seconds. Because blenders are so easy to assemble and clean a lot of people gravitate towards blending instead of juicing.

6. Fruit smoothies are great tasting for the whole family.

Smoothies are great for making fruit-based drinks because it contains the whole fruit. They are also great for green smoothies because you can mix and match to please the taste buds of anyone in your household. A little extra fruit, or maybe a spoonful of cacao for an added twist.

7. With a blender you can make sauces, salsas, and dips.

Blenders are great for making sauces and dips. With a blender you can make all kinds of different things aside from smoothies, like salsas, guacamole, sauces, and soups. Though you can most certainly make soups with a juicer, blended soups tend to be thicker and creamier.

Get the Vitamix Blender

8. You can easily add supplements and superfoods into smoothies.

When you’re making a smoothie you can add a spoonful of hemp protein powder, spirulina, maca root powder, and so on. You wouldn’t necessarily add these supplements to a glass of juice, either because of the taste or the texture. That makes smoothies ideal for superfoods and giving yourself a nutritional edge.

My Recommended Blender of Choice

If you’ve got the means then I definitely recommend you go with a Vitamix blender. Otherwise, Amazon has a nice selection of mid-range blenders like the Oster Professional Series Blender.

The Benefits of Juicing and Freshly Squeezed Juice

Many long time raw foodists (ugh there we go with labels again!) state that their success is in part due to juicing.

1. Fresh juices are the shortcut to pure nutrition.

Freshly made juice gives you all the nutrients without any of the associated digestion. A freshly made juice bypasses your need to digest through the fibers before you get all the nutrients of the fruits and vegetables. This is ideal for people who have digestion problems and who need to heal themselves before they can absorb nutrients from whole foods. This ability to bypass your digestion and go straight into your nutritional system is important for giving your body a break and allowing it to heal itself fully.

2. Juice is ideal for cleansing and healing.

Many people have healed themselves and undergone complete transformations by following a supervised juice fast or juice feast. The idea is to drink only freshly made juicer for an extended period of time to allow your body to take a break and work on deeper issues that require healing. Remember to consider the benefits of organic produce when you’re juicing, especially if you aren’t peeling your produce.

3. Juice vegetables, but eat fruits.

Jay Kordich (The Juice Daddy) believes that you should juice vegetables and eat fruits. Vegetables are better juiced whereas fruits are better eaten whole. Fruits need all of the fiber in order to slow down the absorption of sugar in your blood stream. The exception is that of mixing apple juice with vegetables. Vegetables contain less sugar and therefore don’t need as much fiber to slow down the absorption. This goes back to the idea that store bought fruit juices are not a healthy drink.

4. Juice gives you an instant energy boost.

When you’re drinking freshly made juice, you’re getting all of the energy right away without waiting for your body to digest through it. Whenever I drink freshly squeezed vegetable juice I always feel energized and more alert.

5. Even without fiber juice is a great way to flush your system out.

Even without all of the fiber of smoothies, juices are a great way to give your body a chance to expel things via bowel movements. If you “chew your juice” as recommended, you give your body a signal that begins peristalsis and gets your bowels moving. That leads to a bowel movement and you are cleansing your body even without eating the fiber.

6. Cleaning a juicer can be quite a task.

I think it’s a tossup between making juice and making a smoothie in terms of time. For a smoothie you need to cut the fruits that you’re going blend, and for a juice you might need to cut apples or carrots if they don’t fit in the juicer.

A juicer definitely requires a little bit more time for cleanup. Although I’ve been able to time myself and make an entire batch of juice in less than 15 minutes, I think all of these things come with practice.

7. Juices don’t make you feel full.

After drinking juice you might be satisfied for 30 minutes to an hour. After drinking a smoothie, you might be satisfied for two to three hours. So I see juice more as a way to add nutrition into your day, and not as much as a meal like a smoothie might be.

8. Juice allows you to juice almost any produce.

You might never put a beet or a carrot in one of your smoothies, but you can definitely make juice out of these ingredients. Interestingly enough, you can disguise bad tasting vegetables with other better tasting vegetables and apples to make juices that contain a larger variety of ingredients. Not necessarily so with smoothies.

9. The debate over unlocked nutrition in juice and smoothies.

It’s still up for debate whether juice or smoothies unlock all the nutritional value in fruits and vegetables. Some juicer and blender manufacturers say that all of the nutrition is unlocked and is therefore superior to eating the fruits and vegetables themselves. This would potentially lead to increased absorption of nutrition. This is certainly the case for the elderly, or people who have a hard time chewing through foods properly.

While I cannot quote any scientific studies, I can definitely vouch with my experience that it is very easy to digest smoothies and juices.

My Recommended Juicer of Choice

Earlier this year I bought an Omega Masticating Juicer, and I’m so pleased with it! There are also some great mid-range juicers available like the Breville Juice Fountain.

Watch the Cliff Notes Version via Video


(Watch the video here if it’s not viewable.)

Is Juicing Better for you than Smoothies? Or vice versa?

I think it really comes down to what you’re more likely to use on a daily basis. The blender might work better if you’re in a rush and you need a very filling meal. In this case I definitely recommend making lots of blended green smoothies.

If you have a lot of produce from your garden or from a weekly produce delivery service and you don’t know what to do with all of it, I definitely recommend a juicer. Remember not to mix fruits and vegetables in the same juice except for apples and to some extent lemons. Though it is preferable to make vegetable juices over fruit juices.

When I first went raw I bought a blender and a juicer. If I had to do it all over again I would have just bought a blender. Now I have both a blender and a juicer and I’m definitely making good use of my juicer because of all the produce in my garden.

If money is an issue then I definitely think a blender is a better investment because you’re not wasting the fiber of the fruits and vegetables that you’re blending.

I do think that juice have an advantage in terms of nutrition because it simply gives your digestion system a break.

Have your say…

So if you were starting over with raw foods, or if you’re in that place now… which one would you recommend to others in this situation? A blender or a juicer? Let us know in the comments!
Love, Nathalie

13 Witchy Ways Green Smoothies Help You Feel Great All In Less Than 13 Minutes

green-smoothie-recipes

What if you could drink a magick potion that would revitalize you, clear your system of unwanted toxins, and take less than 13 minutes to make? Green Smoothies can do just that, and much more.

1. All you need is a blender and an open mind.

The great thing about green smoothies is that it doesn’t require much to get started. (You could invest in a Vitamix for silky-smooth shakes, but that’s totally optional.) My biggest suggestion is to give green smoothies a try before you get a better blender. That way you’ll be convinced of their effectiveness.

2. Green Smoothies are quick to make.

If you’re in a rush you can get a green smoothie ready and blended in less than 13 minutes. You can just blend and go while you drink the green smoothie on the run. You could even make a green smoothie ahead of time. Then store half of it in the refrigerator using a glass mason jar and it will still taste great one day later.

3. You get a steady stream of energy. (No crashing!)

You won’t experience the up-and-down spikes that you might from an all fruit smoothie when you make it a green one. That’s because the fiber rich greens slow down the absorption of fruit sugars, providing you with just the right amount of energy and nutrition at a pace that your body really loves.

4. Green smoothies can be enjoyed year round.

When your garden is overflowing with greens, just whip up a couple of batches of green smoothies and enjoy these inexpensive nutritional drinks. You can also benefit from green smoothies in the winter, by using frozen fruits and greens that you might have preserved from the summer. Green smoothies provide you with a lot of options all year round.

5. Green smoothies are ideal for weight loss.

Whenever you feel a craving coming on, make yourself a green smoothie instead of indulging your craving. (If you’re having a lot of trouble with cravings, consider hiring me to do a Magick Power Session and we’ll eliminate them together.) Green smoothies help cut cravings because they are satisfying and provide your body with tons of nutrition.

6. Greens are the most Under-appreciated Superfoods.

We all know green tea is great as an antioxidant. What is green tea made of, if it’s not greens? Skip the middleman and just increase your intake of greens. Green leafy veggies are great because they have tons of cancer fighting properties, immune system boosting vitamins and minerals. Upping green leaf intake has been shown to reduce heart disease and prevent other degenerative diseases. That’s what I call super. To find out more about greens, get my free special report.

7. Satisfy every taste bud.

If you have a sweet tooth you’ll enjoy making green smoothies with lots of fruit. If you want something a little edgier, you can add some Raw Chocolate powder and make it a nutritiously devious dessert. If you want to replace a meal, you can make savory green smoothies using ingredients like tomatoes, cucumbers, celery, and even spices to make it a satisfying hearty meal.

Green Witch's Goop
Fancy a bowl of a witch’s green magick goop?

8. You Get to be a Modern Witch

Modern witches use blenders to make their magick potions, because cauldrons are so 13th century. Making green smoothies is a lot like casting a spell or making a magick potion. It brings out the childlike qualities in all of us, and it even sets the magick of healing in motion. I like to eat my green smoothies in a bowl with a spoon, because it’s even more like a witch’s mysterious bubbly concoction.

9. Get your daily portion of fruit and vegetables.

One green smoothie probably contains more fruits and vegetables than most average Americans eat in a day. It’s one of the easiest ways of increasing your fruit and veggie intake. Plus you don’t need to carry an easily bruised banana around.

10. Chock full of amino acids.

If you’re worried that you’re not getting enough protein, increase your green smoothie intake. The more greens you eat, the more amino acids that you provide your body with. Your body uses these amino acids to produce protein.

11. Indulge your creativity and experiment.

You can throw almost any fruits or veggies into your blender and it will turn out tasting pretty good. (It helps if you follow some basic guidelines, of course.) Green smoothies give you the flexibility to create your own recipes, but they’re also a great way to use up leftovers.

Green Smoothies Yum!

12. Green smoothies are chimney sweepers for your body.

Over time, food that doesn’t get digested properly can get stuck in your system and become a burden on your elimination organs. Green smoothies act as a chimney sweeping brush to flush out all that toxic waste. The more green smoothies you drink, the cleaner your bowels will become, and the better your elimination. If you want to feel great, make it easy for your body to take the trash out. Oh, and that helps with releasing weight too!

13. Green smoothies are a great addition to any eating plan.

What I like about green smoothies is that they can act as a “gateway drug” to raw foods. It’s so easy to just add a green smoothie to your current diet. There’s no reason not to give it a try. If after a couple of months you’re feeling great, you might choose to increase your raw food intake a little. That, my friend, is the power of green smoothies.

The Basic Green Smoothie Recipe

Feel free to use this basic green smoothie base and experiment. (Remember #11!)

  • 2 Bananas
  • 1 Peach
  • 5 Strawberries
  • Handful Spinach (increase greens gradually over time, and you’ll find you crave more of them!)
  • 1 cup water

After you make your first green smoothie, you’ll want to learn about trying new recipes and rotating your greens here.

What Are YOUR Favorite Green Smoothies Recipes?

I’d love to hear what your favorite green smoothie recipes are! I know there are tons of variations out there, but which one is YOUR favorite?

Raw Food Transition Carnival #2: Smoothie Edition

rainbow-raw-food-carnival
Photo by Jeff McCann

Welcome to the April 25, 2009 edition of raw food transition carnival. This edition was all about Smoothies! I’ve kept a few of the submissions that didn’t directly relate to smoothies, because they have merit and can help other raw foodies. Enjoy!

Smoothies And More

Jack Russel presents The Amazing Benefits of the Acai Berry posted at Pure Acai – Acai Berry Info Blog, saying, “The Acai berry has been heavily promoted by the media in recent times.”

Ralph Jean-Paul presents Building Self-Discipline posted at Potential 2 Success, saying, “Having trouble sticking to your diet or exercise program? Take charge of your health by adding more discipline to your life. Learn some steps needed for you to build discipline in every aspect of your life.”

Debbie Took presents Blending posted at RawforLife Blog.

mangoz presents RAW VEGAN NORI SUSHI ROLL DEMONSTRATION posted at Vegetarian Culinary, saying, “Easy guide on how to make vegan sushi rolls!”

Sarah Scrafford presents 50 Foods That Give You the Most Nutrition Bang for Your Buck posted at Masters in Health Care.

Green Smoothies

Raphael Araujo presents Super Energizing Green Smoothie posted at Kick Ass Living, saying, “Love your carnival!”

Charis presents Green Smoothie Salads posted at Raw Royalty.

Pamela Reilly, Naturopath & Living Food Life Coach, CNHP, CPH presents Reaping a Harvest from Fruitless Smoothies posted at Rawvolutionary Healing.

Smoothie Recipes

Raw Vegan Foodie presents Raspberry Banana Smoothie posted at Raw Food Crafting.

Superfood Smoothies

Lenette Nakauchi presents Cacao Cherry Smoothie Recipe | Go Raw Have Fun posted at Go Raw Have Fun!.

Join Us Next Time…

That concludes this edition. Submit your blog article to the next edition of raw food transition carnival using our carnival submission form. Past posts and future hosts can be found on our blog carnival index page.

The edition will be all about Raw Food Healing: What did you heal with raw foods, what are you trying to heal, and how do you feel now that you’ve come along in your raw food journey?