HEART SMART BERRY SMOOTHIE

In honor of February, National Heart Health month, I wanted to feature a heart healthy smoothie for my blog. Plan to serve the love of your life this smoothie on Valentines Day this Saturday as well!

Heart Smart Berry Smoothie

This heart smart smoothie features a favorite red valentine fruit, raspberries. Raspberries are so delicious and juicy, yet low in calorie content and very high in dietary fiber.Raspberries and other berries such as strawberries, blackberries and blueberries contain antioxidants which help to protect our bodies by neutralizing free radicals.Free radicals can cause cell damage and contribute to disease. Several scientific studies have shown that the antioxidant compounds in berries may help to prevent disease such as cancer, reduce inflammation and delay aging. Raspberries are an excellent source of the antioxidant vitamins A and C. They also are provide quercetin in the diet, which works both as an anti-carcinogen and an antioxidant, protecting against cancer and heart disease.

 

Happy Valentine’s Day. Celebrate with a Heart Smart Berry Smoothie and some dark chocolate!

 

 

 

This smoothie recipe also calls for fresh spinach and you may substitute kale if you would prefer this. The dark green color of spinach and kale leaves indicates that they contain ligh levels of chlorophyll, and health promoting carotenoids (beta carotene, lutein and zeaxanthin). These phyto (plant) chemicals fight both inflammation and cancer and are very beneficial for eyesight, since they help prevent macular degeneration and cataracts. If you are around my age, you may remember Popeye, the cartoon character ate lots of spinach to keep him strong. It must have been the iron in his spinach that kept him so strong. Spinach is also an excellent source of Vitamins A, C, K and folic acid.

Yogurt and milk are both excellent sources of protein, calcium and Vitamin D. Calcium and Vitamin D are beneficial for bone health and calcium has also been shown to be helpful for controlling blood pressure levels as well. If you prefer to use almond or soy milk in the recipe, check the label well and purchase a brand that if fortified with calcium and Vitamin D.

Our heart healthy smoothie also contains ground flaxseed. Choose ground flaxseed, rather than whole flaxseed because the ground form is easier for your body to digest.Whole flaxseed may pass through your intestines undigested and you will not be able to reap the benefit of the flaxseed that way. Flaxseed is also a good source of  fiber and omega 3 fatty acids.  One tablespoon of ground flaxseed contains only 30 calories and provides 2 grams of dietary fiber as well as 3 grams of protein. It has a very filling effect is beneficial for preventing and relieving constipation.  Flaxseed may also help lower LDL or “bad” cholesterol levels, which can help prevent coronary artery disease. Flaxseed also contains lignins which bind with circulating substances that might promote unchecked cell growth. According to Dr. Andrew Weils’s Lowering Breast Cancer Risk website, lignins contained in flax may have a protective effect against breast cancer. Flaxseed have a nutty taste and can be added to cereals, smoothies, yogurt and baked goods such as quick breads.

Have a Happy Valentine’s Day and be good to your heart!

 

 

 

HEART SMART BERRY SMOOTHIE
Author: 
Prep time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 2 servings
 
Ingredients
  • 8 ounces non-fat yogurt (substitute Greek yogurt if desired)
  • 4 ounces skim milk
  • 1 cup frozen raspberries
  • 1 TB ground flaxseed
  • ¼ cup chopped fresh spinach or kale
  • 2 packets Stevia
Instructions
  1. Combine all ingredients in a blender, nutri-bullet or food processor. and process until well blender.
  2. Garnish with fresh berries and serve immediately.
Notes
The information in this food blog is not intended to provide medical advice. Please contact your personal health care provider for medical advice regarding your health.

Nutritional information was calculated using Spark People Recipe Calculator.
Nutrition Information
Serving size: ½ recipe Calories: 137 Fat: 1 gram Saturated fat: 0 grams Unsaturated fat: 0 grmas Trans fat: 0 grams Carbohydrates: 20 grams Sodium: 132 mg Fiber: 4 grams Protein: 8 grams Cholesterol: 7 mg

MERRY MOCKTAILS TO BRING IN THE NEW YEAR!

POM POM SPRITZER
Author: 
Recipe type: Beverage
Prep time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 12 servings
 
Delicious easy to prepare mocktails for the New Year!
Ingredients
  • 24 oz white grape juice
  • 24 oz 100% pomegranate juice
  • 24 oz black cherry or similar flavor of sparkling water
Instructions
  1. Combine all ingredients in a large pitcher or punch bowl. Chill until serving time. Garnish with sliced fresh fruit or mint leaves. Makes 12 six oz servings. You may substitute cranberry juice cocktail in place of pomegranate juice if desired.
Notes
This information is not intended for medical advice. Please contact your personal health care practitioner for individual medical advice.

Recipes are calculated using Spark People Recipe Calculator.
Nutrition Information
Serving size: 6 oz Calories: 75 Fat: 0 grams Trans fat: 0 grams Carbohydrates: 19 grams Sodium: 17 mg Protein: 0 grams Cholesterol: 0 mg

Bring in the New Year with some Merry Mocktails! These delicious alcohol free beverages are guaranteed to please you and  your guests and there won’t be a nasty hangover tomorrow. Serve your mocktails in your prettiest wine goblets, an antique looking old Ball canning jar or your coolest mug! Garnish your mocktails with fresh mint, sliced oranges or lemon wedges or a big fat fresh strawberry!

Pom Pom Spritzer

BERRY BRIGHT FIZZ

Combine 2 cups fresh berries, 3 TB honey or 3 packets stevia sweetener and 2 cups raspberry or similar flavor sparkling water in your blender or food processor. Process until smooth. Chill and serve in individual glasses or a punch bowl. Garnish with fresh mint and fresh berries. Makes 4 cups of beverage. Serving size 1 cup. One serving is equal to 75 calories, 19 grams carbohydrate, 0 grams fat, 0 grams trans fat, 2 mg sodium, 0 grams protein using honey. If you use stevia, one serving is equal to 30 calories 7 grams carbohydrate, 0 grams fat, 0 grams trans fat, 0 mg cholesterol and 2 mg sodium.

Ingredients for the Pom Pom Spritzer-so easy!