Saturday, September 5, 2009

Flu fighter smoothie and some thoughts

A while back I discovered collard greens in smoothies, and have been tossing them in frequently ever since. The taste is great, does not overwhelm the smoothie even in large quantities. Just like most dark leafy greens, collards are loaded with vitamin C and essential minerals. They are also reputed to contain anti-cancer properties (scientists suggest diinfolylmethane and sulforaphane). According to this source:

"Some of these compounds [found in collards and kale] enhance antioxidant and detoxification effects in the body. Others inhibit tumor growth; some block cancer causing compounds, and some prevent the formation of carcinogens. The American Cancer Society recommends that Americans increase their intake of kale, cabbage, and other brassicas. It has also been reported that compounds in brassicas can protect the eyes against macular degeneration."

Diindolylmethane has also been attributed anti-viral and anti-bacterial.
Another ingredient in this power smoothie is grapefruit, widely recognized for its high fiber, vitamin C and potassium content. The ruby one, which I always buy, has the important phytochemical lycopene along with plenty of antioxidants. Here are some potential health effects of consuming grapefruit:

"In humans, drinking three 6-ounce glasses of grapefruit juice a day was shown to reduce the activity of an enzyme that activates cancer-causing chemicals found in tobacco smoke. In rats whose colons were injected with carcinogens, grapefruit and its isolated active compounds (apigenin, hesperidin, limonin, naringin, naringenin, nobiletin) not only increased the suicide (apoptosis) of cancer cells, but also the production of normal colon cells."

Even if that isn't true in humans, it is still yummy and packed with nutrients. But remember to ask your doctor first if you are on some medication and suddenly start consuming plenty of grapefruit.

More and more health nuts are raving about parsley and it's immense array of health benefits - and for a good reason. Parsley is packed with vitamin C & A, iron and necessary minerals. For women especially, the folate and calcium are very imporant. Do your own research and start by reading this.

Flu fighter smoothie (~3 large glasses):
1 large ruby red grapefruit (only take the outer peel off, don't separate the "meat" because you'll lose fiber, remove all seeds)
2 apples (we had fresh, green and nicely tart Finnish apples)
1 banana
2 tsp maca-powder
sesame seeds
collard greens
raw, organic honey

I find that although I am accustomed to green smoothies, I can still cram way more greens into this smoothie (both parsley and collards), when I add just a little honey and a banana. Go crazy with the green, add as much as your taste allows. The green smoothie is meant to be enjoyed, not chugged down quickly while holding your nose and trying not to vomit. :)

Green smoothies really are the perfect starter to the day. I used to have oatmeal every morning, but though it did keep the hunger away as long as the smoothie does, it did not have the same "pick-me-up" factor. It must be all those vitamins.

I've just started this blog and it is impossible to know yet what this will lead to. It seems like my diet is different every week, often times I find something new and amazing but sometimes I come to realize that something I have been eating quite a bit is not actually right for me. And that's the thing really, you need to be tuned to your own body and listen to it. What's good for someone else, may not be good for you.

Here are some products I make a point to avoid in my diet:

1. All dairy - When I found out I was severely lactose-intolerant, I took it as a sign that milk is just not for me. The casein is also harmful in so many ways that I wouldn't give my daughter any dairy even if she could tolerate the lactose.
2. All soy - I used to consume quite a bit of soy, as I figured just as long as it is organic and preferably fermented, it is ok (tofu, wheat-free soy sauce, soyoghurt). Now I'm not even using nama shouy, because I'm worried about how it may affect my hormone levels.
3. Oat, barley, kamut, spelt, wheat and rye - Wheat or barley grass I am growing, but am not sure if it agrees with me yet (gluten sensitivity).
4. All refined oils & sugars - I think you all know why.
5. Peanuts - not only are they bad for the acid-base balance in your body, but they also contain toxins. I believe more people are having adverse reactions to them than they may realize.
6. Any food additives - easily avoided when you purchase organic and stay clear from processed food.
7. All unnecessary medication - antibiotics, hormonal birth control, acetaminophen or ibuprofen for any minor ache or just out of habit

Don't worry, I won't be flooding the server with constant posts all the time. Courses reassume next Monday and I begin working on my master's thesis soon. Some people may consider me strange, but science is such a source of gradification for me and lacking a better term.. just makes me happy. It is thrilling to actual feel like you are making a difference when you reach important conclusions in your research. Not only that, but I get to study young children, which naturally is so much fun. I'm fortunate to be able to say that I truly am passionate about my work and studies. Not everyone is lucky enough to say that they love what they do for a living.


Yaelian said...

Nuo collard greensit (en nyt muista nimeä suomeksi) ovatkin loistava perusta smoothieille. Itse käytän paljon pinaattia ja mangoldia. Ja verigreipit ovat ihania !Kohta täälläkin ne tulevat taas kauppoihin!
Olet onnekas, kun tunnet tuollaista intoa työtäsi ja opintojasi kohtaan:-)

Aletheia said...

Collard greensit taitaa olla lehtikaalia, namia :) Pinaatti ja mangoldi ovatkin hyviä ideoita. En varmasti jaksaisi opiskellakaan, ellei se olisi intohimoni!

Anonymous said...

Thanks very healthy, but how about the taste hehe, i'll made some there's any problem if my husband use it to drink he's generic viagra?
Thanks for sharing.