Recently I’ve been on the hunt for creative ways to get nutritious boosts into my food and one of my favorites is to add spinach to my smoothies – lots of it! I must admit this idea came from something I saw on Pinterest which is the other new favorite in my life. Spinach in your smoothies may sound odd, but you actually can’t even taste the spinach AND you’re adding a lot of good stuff into your diet without many calories.
Why Spinach? Turns out Popeye was right!
- Eating these dark green leaves (really all dark green leaves), protects you from cognitive decline. Given that I’m already pretty forgetful, I’m going to keep adding spinach to my smoothies!
- Protects against cancer. There are more than a dozen individual flavonoid compounds in spinach (Livestrong) that act as antioxidants and neutralize free radicals in the body, aka, fights cancer. In fact, boys, there is a carotenoid in spinach that actually causes prostate cancer cells to kill themselves and then prevents them from coming back! (The Journal of Nutrition) And, ladies, don’t you fret because spinach is good for you too. Women who eat a lot of foods containing the antioxidant kaempferol (spinach has a lot of this) show a significantly reduced incidence of ovarian cancer. (Livestrong) Other foods that contain kaempferol are blueberries, grapes, red wine, citrus, apples, leeks, onions, curly kale, broccoli, St. Johns’ Wort, and non-herbal tea.
- Improve cardiovascular healtlh. Stressed? A salad-size serving of spinach will lower your blood pressure level in hours. Spinach also has 65% of your daily intake in folate which “converts harmful, stroke-inducing chemicals into harmless compounds. (Livestrong)”
- Lots of nutrients! Seriously low in calories and packed with nutrients, this is a rockstar food to include in your diet on a regular basis! One cup of these leaves has only 40 calories yet also has almost 40% of your daily magnesium requirement, nearly all your manganese and folate, and more than your vitamin K and vitamin A requirements! It is also considered to be an excellent source of dietary fiber, protein, and calcium. Pass the green stuff, please!
1 c. unsweetened rice milk
1/4 c. frozen organic mango
1/4 c. frozen organic raspberries
1/2 c. frozen organic wild blueberries
1 Tbsp. chia seeds
Fill the rest of the blender up with spinach and blend!
How else do you eat your spinach? Please share your recipes!