Seven Ingredient Chunky Monkey Superfood Cookies

Craving a cookie after all of the sweet treat teasing we’ve been through this week?

In the name of guilt free and bakery’s, these cookies can be whipped up in minutes, are soft, chewy and naturally sweet.

  • With cookies, chocolate chip in particular, being one of the all time most popular desserts, these Chunky Monkey Cookies forego all of the classic wheat, sugars, corn starch and dairy so that I can give you full, nutritionist approved permission to go right ahead and even eat the batter!

In  conclusion to a week of sweet talking, these are your bite sized, guilt free indulgences to treat yourself to today.

 chunky monkey

3 Reasons To Go Banana’s

1. Flour free & refined sugar-free
  • Completely free of refined flours and sugars which are devoid of nutrients and spike our blood sugar with a subsequent crash. Ever felt the sudden rise of energy directly after eating sweets, only to be caught snoozing with you head on the table the next? That’s your blood sugar talking!
  • Instead of refined sugars, we owe this cookies sweetness to the whole food; bananas. Where 12 grams of of sugar are in just one tablespoon of table sugar, a quarter cup of mashed banana contains less than 7 grams!
  • Quick tip: making sure they are brown and spotted is to ensure that they are more alkaline to the body and make a sweeter cookie.
2) Makes just 4 a batch
  • Portion control at its finest! Most cookie recipes make around 2-3 dozen cookies, a lot of temptation to have hanging around in reuseable food containers on the countertops. 4 cookies makes just enough for you to enjoy without going overboard.
3) 7 Wholefood ingredients
  • All of which you are more than likely to have as staples in your holistic cabinet. With just seven, wholesome ingredients and minimal time to make, these are easy to whip up whenever you have a craving for a sweet treat.

Chunky Monkey Superfood Cookies

Adventure level: 2/5

Yields 4 cookies per batch

Ingredients:

  • 1 mashed banana
    • Making sure its ripe and spotted brown to ensure sweetness!
  • 1/4 C gluten-free rolled oats (I like Bob Redmills)
  • 2 TBSP unsweetened coconut flakes
    • Also look for sulphite free
  • 1 tsp coconut oil
  • 1/4 tsp pure vanilla extract
  • 1/8-1/4 tsp cinnamon
  • Sprinkling of sea salt
  • Handful of gogi berries, dark chocolate chips or crushed pecans (I used a combo of all three!)

Directions:

  • Preheat oven to 350
  • Combine all ingredients together, mixing well
  • Spoon onto a baking sheet forming cookie shapes and gently flatten the top
  • Bake 15-20 minutes, let cool 10 minutes

Cookies that aren’t monkeying around on taste or nutrition, enjoy!

Suzanne Eden

Shark Weeks 6 Ways to Make Waves In Our Health And The Health Of Sharks

Whoever considered that soup could be a deadly concoction to both human beings of land and majestic creatures of the ocean? Or that liver oils and aphrodisiacs could heighten your mood but deflate a 4,000 pound predator of the deep?

~*~

With thoughts of shark week, holistic health may very well not be the first thing to swim into your mind (or even the last thing for that matter), but our everyday lifestyle choices affect the health of sharks just as much as they affect ours. These impressive creatures have been swimming the oceans for over 400 million years (100 million years before the first dinosaurs appeared on land) and have been contributing to the delicate interplay of our oceanic ecosystems ever since.

They are integral to our oceans and though recent news has surfaced with shark attacks on the rise, the shark population is on the decline, with Green Peace reporting that some species have declined over 95% in the last decade. The empowering news is that we DO have the power to protect these predators and much of it takes place on our plates!

jelly

Random FACTS of kindness:
Most shark species are docile and couldn’t give a shark’s fin about humans. What they DO care about is feeding their enormous bodies with seals which we so conveniently resemble as we’re floating in the water. Most shark attacks are not fatal because, just as you would a mushy apple, a shark takes one bite, realises we’re not what it thought we were and spits us out.  The unfortunate thing is that on the  jaws of a standard shark, this “test bite” is pretty substantial. But all things considered, sharks are really wonderful creatures and an important part of the sea. Turns out we don’t need to be as afraid of sharks as we should be afraid for them.

In honour of shark week, let me take you on a dive into the 6 ways that we can make waves in our health and the health of our sharks!

1) From bait to plate: Do not eat shark. EVER.

  • Have you ever tried shark? If not, you are missing out on one of the greatest sources of mercury you could eat from the sea! Sound appetizing? I have never been one to turn down a strange food experience but this would be one of them. With extremely high levels of mercury contamination and inhumane killing practises, we’re swimming in over our heads with each bite.
  • Mercury is a neurotoxin to both humans and animals and found in extremely high amounts in sharks. Pollution has dramatically increased the amount of mercury found in our water with The Whole Life Nutrition book stating that the top 100 meters of the ocean now has twice as much mercury as it did in the previous century. The larger and fattier the animal, the more this accumulates in the tissues with up to 9 million times the amount that’s found in the water, according to Mercola.
  • Predatorial fish (such as sharks) now contain 12 times the mercury they did during pre-industrial times. Why such large amounts? Sharks, being top-of-the-food-chain creatures, are eating other fish that are already contaminated, which causes the mercury to accumulate within their bodies. When we eat them, that mercury will accumulate in us.

Beware that shark can be disguised under other names such as flake, rock salmon, dog-fish, rigg or rock eel.

  • In Asia, shark fin soup is a delicacy but an indelicacy to sharks, who are cruelly killed for their fins (utilizing only 1-5% of the shark’s body weight) with the rest of their bodies being discarded back into the ocean (often with the shark still alive and left to bleed to death). The fresh fins can fish prices of up to $400 / kilogram according to wildaid.org.

RFOK (random facts of kindness):

Even with those tell-tale razor sharp teeth, sharks don’t actually chew their food but rather swallow them. As for us, we need to chew our food around 30-40 times for optimal digestion!

shark tank
2. Some-things a little fishy: Eat sustainably caught fish

  • So you’re not eating shark, but what about your everyday seafood choices such as fish? Turns out over half the amount of sharks caught each year are done through by-catch while attempting to catch other fish such as squid, tuna, and other commercial species.
  • This way of farming or fishing doesn’t jeopardize the health of our oceans and is an easy and effective way to make a change each and every time you purchase seafood. To find sustainably caught sea food, follow this link which will give you access to consumer guides, downloadable apps and even lets you compare you favourite sushi! http://www.seafoodwatch.org/

RFOK: We aren’t the only ones who like variety in our seafood! In captivity sharks will refuse to eat if they have eaten the same thing too many times.

3. Hooked on health: Choose shark-healthy health products

  • There are unfortunately a few health care products utilizing components of shark. Some of these include aphrodisiacs, shark liver oil, arthritis and cancer prevention products that use shark cartilage. The effectiveness of these supplements is backed up by very little, if any, scientific facts. Stay away from the use of any of these products, especially with the potential risks of contamination that appears in sharks.

RFOK: Speaking of aphrodisiacs, female sharks have thicker skin, as males have to bite the females while mating. Due to the fact that they heal rapidly, bite marks on a female shark is a telltale sign that you’ve found their mating grounds.

deep blue

4. Give them a High Fin!

  • Flying can impact our deep-sea diving friends! This is one tip I “flew” with after reading it on the Discovery shark week website. Many shark fins are transported via airplane and choosing airlines that refuse these practises is a simple way to hop on board and take a stand as you take your seat.

RFOK;
Sharks move like airplanes by creating forward movements with their tails (like propellers) so that water moves over their fins like wings.

5. Adopt a shark!

  • Now, I am certainly not encouraging you to strap on your scuba gear and dive into a swarm of hungry sharks with your adoption agency papers looking for the right one to bring home to your living room aquarium. On the other hand, or fin, there are many organizations such as WWF, that allow you to “adopt” an animal, thereby donating to the protection of that species. This makes a great gift too! 😀

RFOK:
There’s a species called the cookie-cutter shark (presumably gluten and refined-sugar free!) that takes cookie-cutter shaped bites of its food.

jellyfish

6. Share Socially!

  • Share this and other articles! Tweet it, Facebook it, email it. Social media has become one of the biggest ways to make a splash in our world. It allows us to instantly share information and bring awareness to important issues that we care about. Whether it be this article, a Greenpeace article, the shark week website, or any other modality, create waves by creating awareness.

As we sit down with our lemon waters and humus to take a bite of shark week, consider that with our everyday choices, we have the power to influence these magnificent creatures of the deep! And it is easy, so easy, to make waves in their health, right now! It starts with knowledge and changes with action. And your first line of action? Share this article and get the message out there!

For loads more information check out: http://wildaid.org/sites/default/files/resources/EndOfTheLine2007US.pdf

Wishing you all a Holistic Chomp of Shark Week!

La fin,
Suzanne Eden

Mothers Day Gatherings With The Mediterranean Lentil Summer Salad

This was a smashing hit this weekend at our Mother’s Day gathering (as evidenced by the lack of salad that made its way home to me) and it’s about time for another recipe!
  • Have you tried lentils before? They are one of my favourite plant-based ways to pack protein and fibre into my diet. When prepared properly they are easily digested, simple to make and we always have organic bags of them stocked in our cold cellar ready to cook up in a pinch. So whether you are looking for a way to dip a spoon into these legumes or are on the hunt for the ultimate entertaining salad for summer BBQ’s, this dish is your holistic fix!
   But first, a little taste of Mother’s Day…
oh she glows
 
We spent a “heartfelt” Mother’s Day bonding for bunch with these golden chia bagels from the “Oh She Glows” cookbook with dollops of homemade strawberry jam.
  • I made the jam using frozen organic strawberries which are more cost-effective and last longer than the fresh ones. When flash frozen, they maintain the same nutrient value they had fresh, though warming them as you do with this recipe, will unfortunately destroy most of its nutrients anyways.
  • In the bagels, I recommend using maple syrup as opposed to honey as it is more heat-resistant. These bagels are cooked at a very low temperature which is optimal and my mother, and a fellow coworker I shared them with, loved them! It was a good thing for extra ingredients as I maaay have spent Saturday night whipping up another batch after eating the first one straight out of the oven… oops!
 Though I wasn’t able to attend our Mother’s Day gathering this year, we packed up this Mediterranean salad for everyone to enjoy. We are so spoiled as our families get togethers are ripe with fresh veggie platters (much of which is supplied via my grandparent’s garden) with homemade dips & hummus and feature healthy dinners always tailored to our dairy-free, gluten-free needs! But this salad offers the perfect holistic life hack if you find yourself in a situation where it is the only healthy dish on the menu as the high protein content, fibre and healthy fats make this a light but hearty salad so that you can fill up with lentils and take smaller samplings of the rest of the food and/or desserts.
entertaining
The Mediterranean Lentil Summer Salad
Light, effortless and wholesome, this is the perfect entertaining salad for all of your summer gatherings!

Ingredients:

  • 4 cups cooked red or green lentils (soaked overnight)
  • 1-1/2 cups quartered grape tomatoes
  • 1-1/2 cups peeled and quartered cucumber
  • 1 cup diced red bell pepper (organic as it is part of the dirty dozen)
  • 1/2 cup chopped green onion
  • ½ cup pitted olives (black or green. I go based on which organic ones I can find and pit them myself)
  • 1/3 cup chopped fresh parsley
  • 1/3 cup chopped fresh mint leaves or cilantro
  • Optional but reccommended; 1-2 Avocados!

Ingredients for dressing:

  • 3 tbsp olive oil
  • 3 tbsp fresh squeezed lemon juice
  • 1 tbsp apple cider vinegar
  • 2 tsp honey (raw, unpasteurized, unprocessed)
  • 1 tsp Dijon mustard
  • 1 tsp minced garlic
  • ½ tsp dried oregano
  • ½ tsp salt
  • Freshly ground black pepper to taste

Directions:

  • Rinse and cook the soaked lentils as instructed on the package and allow to cool (This can be done ahead of time and stored in the fridge).
  • Combine all salad ingredients (except avos) in a large bowl and mix well.
  • Whisk together dressing ingredients in a small bowl and gently mix into the salad. Add the avocado, cover and refrigerate for at least 2 hours before serving to allow the flavours to come together. We prepared this dish the night before for an easy morning.
The Switch Ups:
To take you through the remaining few days of our seven days of salads challenge, there are lots of tasty things you can do to revamp this dish!
  • Make wraps with lettuce wraps, raw wraps or rice wraps and include avocado, sprouts, a little mustard or hummus or whatever other wholesome toppings you might enjoy.
  • Use it as a topping for a big, green salad
  • Stuff roasted red peppers, Portobello mushroom caps or squash
  • create a rustic “salsa” type of dip for brown rice or nut and seed crackers
Whether entertaining your family or an entire crowd, this simple, wholesome and yummy salad is your new quick fix go-to and  the perfect way to conclude our final days of the seven days of salads challenge!
To a deliciously plant powered weekend,
Suzanne Eden

The Rocky Road & This Weeks Seven Days Of Salads Challenge!

I’ve got a challenge for you this week!

It is so simple and a brilliant reboot for our health. I did it quietly for myself this past week (minus a pit stop… or two, for some dairy free gelato) and then a funny thing happened…

gelato

The ACTIVEist

Friday found my friend and I biking down to the beach for the first bike of the season which, in itself, should have been a warning sign for trouble and what an adventure it was! It started with the realization that we were biking on enTIREly flat tires for half of the journey… On the plus side, it turns out we’re not quite as out of shape as we had been thinking! But allow me to clarify that when I say flat, my back wheels looked something like a burnt pancake being steamed rolled against the tarmac.

Now loving a challenge and being slightly stubborn at times, I was determined to ride that flattened pancake all the way back up the two gigantic hills to the gas station to pump them up.  I carried nothing except my debit card but luckily knew the gas attendant who graciously offered up 50 cents to my disgruntled appearance and consequently chuckled when I relayed my story to him and a fellow customer. Now whether he was handing me the money out of the kindness of his heart or to get me out of there as quick as possible, is to be determined, but he hadn’t gotten rid of me yet! As we pumped the tires the air nozzle  slipped its way into the depths of the wheel and I was back in to grab a wrench and fish it back out again.

With a wrench in hand and grease stained limbs, my friend and I were bound to go a little (coco)nutty and rehydrated and replenished our electrolytes with some refreshing Thirsty Buddha coconut water 🙂

thirsty buddha

 But it was here at the gas station as we regained our breath and gulped down our waters, that we happened upon the conversation that elicited this week’s challenge. As it turns out, this friend, who happens to live 5 houses down and has a birthday six days apart from mine, was on the same wavelength and ate what I ate this week and was telling me all about how fantastic she felt. She said all of her bloating went away, her digestion was great, her cravings disappeared, she felt light and was running on an abundance of energy! I was thrilled and had personally experienced this as well and had to share with you all! The challenge? To eat nothing but salads for seven days! That’s it, that’s all.

The Seven Days Of Salads Challenge

The contender: YOU

The Challenge: to eat nothing but wholesome salads for 1 week!

The details:

  • Before you classify nacho salads and chocolate (chocolate comes from cocoa, which is a tree, that makes it a plant; chocolate is salad.) not so fast! The more wholesome, the more benefits you will feel, and that’s the whole point! So commit yourself to the healthiest salads you can possibly construct! Here are some tips:

beet salad

Variety: mix it up!

  • Experiment with different greens and salad mixes. Try lentil salads, add chicken and avocado and try that weird-looking veggie you’ve passed for weeks in the supermarket. Keep it bright and colourful for a full spectrum of nutrients and get playful!

Dress it up

  • Would you like some salad with that dressing? Don’t go heavy-handed on the dressings, keep them light and make your own. Store bought dressings are less than ideal and often contain dairy and soy and sugar galore. My super simple go-tos?
    • Olive oil, sea salt and garlic powder (optional)
    • Apple cider vinegar, stone ground mustard and a tiny sprinkle of avocado oil
    • Balsamic? I am asked about this one all the time. My quick answer; when it comes to vinegar I prefer to stick with alkalinizing apple cider but I do use balsamic here and there.

Salad for breakfast?

  • YES! Greens with some strawberries and blueberries make great breakfast salads but green smoothies constitute a salad too. Spinach, cucumber, crisp celery and romaine are all my favourites to add to smoothies to hide the green taste (unless, like myself, you love that taste!) while getting lots of nutrition packed in your blender.

Organic

  • Go organic as much as possible for increased detoxification and the most optimal nutrition! At the very least, purchase the dirty bakers dozen organic or peel your vegetables.

Here is one of my favourite salads (as pictured above) that is already in a post for you: https://lifeofeden.com/2013/10/01/liver-detox-salad/  With grapefruit juice and fresh apple, I love this one for breakfast after allowing it to soak in the fridge overnight and the apple cider vinegar helps to boost digestion for the remainder of the day!

Kick starting our seven days of salads!

Suzanne Eden

Earth Day & Birthdays // 5 Small Steps To Small Ecological Footprints

Happy (belated) Earth Day readers!

It was a busy week from reunions to yesterday’s CN tower climb and  Wednesday was consumed by  a flurry of chocolate and coconut flour and strawberries to make this cake for a very special birthday, but I still can’t resist an Earth Day inspired post!

 

cake

A holistic lifestyle is all encompassing and stretches well beyond our plates. It is both wonderful and terrifying to comprehend the profound impact we make on our ecosystems through the simple act of eating, which we do everyday, three times a day and I am adamant about not only eating for our own health but for the health of the planet.  Afterall, it is our responsibility to be green both on and off our plates and the wonderful thing is that it can be easy with small steps to small ecological footprints!
beach bends
Just imagine what would happen if we flipped our perspective to see every meal, three times a day, 365 days a year as the ripe opportunity to stand up for what we stand on. These are a few “piece of gluten-free, dairy-free cake” ways to start making a profound difference immediately, towards a more sustainable way of eating that benefits our bodies and planet alike and with that;

Here are a few of my favourite holistic life hacks for a healthy diet and healthy planet!

1. Eat Whole – Plan(e)t Powered

  • Americans discard an estimated 570 million pounds of food packaging every single day! And let’s face it, much of that packaging  is entirely unnecessary.  This excessive packaging of processed foods is typically comprised of unsustainable materials and energy intensive processes.
  • Whole food requires no packaging or processing. It’s simply real food as nature intended and the only “waste” is the scraps that are fed to your guinea pig or decompose to provide nutrients to our soil.

wholefood salad

2. Utilize reusable bags (or oversized purses)

  • The second option here is one of the many perks of having a purse the size of a shopping bag, especially when you’ve forgotten the reusable one at home or are attempting to sneak healthy snacks (or entire steak dinners if you were so inclined) into the movie theater. But men, you can stick to the reusable bags if you’d like.
  • Plastic bags take anywhere from 15-1000 years to decompose! What’s more, they are estimated to cost us around 12 million barrels of oil a year to produce and only about 15% of these bags are recycled world-wide. What happens to them? If not recycled they end up in landfills and oceans.

3. BPA plastic free (non pavement proof) mason jars

  • Ah, mason jars, my favourite! I use them for just about everything; water, kefir water, culturing sauerkraut, or portable salads, you name it! With glass, you don’t have to worry about toxic compounds such as BPA that leach from plastics. They also last much longer, provided you don’t test their resiliency on your car dealership’s parking lot pavement.
  • Tossable, plastic water bottles use a considerable amount of fossil fuel from both production and transportation and wind up filling our landfills. Bonus: by using reusable water bottles you save money too!

mason jars

The above is true “vitamin water” with blueberries | Lemon | Garden mint leaves

4. Pass on the plastic

  • It is easy to bring a reusable bag (or purse) but what about the sneaky plastics that find their way home with you? Simple! When shopping, take a pass on the little plastic produce bags. You will have to wash your fruits and vegetables regardless, save the plastic and throw the goodies right into your cart!

5. Eat local and in season

  • According to David Suzuki, the average meal currently travels 1200 km from the farm to plate.  One of the best ways to reduce the costly pollution from transportation and give you the most bang for your buck for health is to eat local and in season as much as possible. As Micheal Pollan once said:

“Skake the hand that feeds you”

  • When food is picked to travel distances, it is picked before its prime to avoid spoiling on the long trip over. This, however, is against nature’s design and will show up in the nutrient value (or lack thereof). When you buy local and in season you are eating foods that you were designed to eat at that time and they are picked in their prime! Perk: this typically offers greater taste as well!

storm

Eating should be at one with our environment and feed not only our own health and vitality but also the sustainability of our Earth and it’s a piece of holistic cake! These are just 5 ways you can make to have a big impact with a few small changes. Afterall, Earth Day truly is everyday 🙂

Stepping towards a smaller footprint,

Suzanne Eden

On The Glow // 7 Plant Driven Snacks To Fuel Your Engines

Snacks can be a tricky one.

They need to be fast food without being “fast food” and they need to satiate while boosting our energy levels. On long work days or yesterday’s road trip to an Auto show in Vaughan, snacking is a must for me when I don’t have time for a meal and I am always on the hunt for more ideas!

These are some of my top 7 plant driven favourites to fuel your engines!

lambo

 Smart Snacking Rules to Glow By:

Eat when hungry

  • A snack is meant for times when you have long gaps between meals, not as a means to satisfy boredom or ease emotions. Pay attention to your hunger cues and snack as needed to stabilize blood sugar and keep energy levels stable.

 Fill with a premium

  • Fuel yourself with only the best! Think quality, wholefoods over snack bars and packaged trail mixes etc. that are often high in sugar. Luckily it is just as easy to grab a juicy apple off of the counter as it is to grab a pre-packaged snack out of the cupboard.

Plan and prep

  • Plan ahead and have snacks handy. Take them with you on the road as it will be tricky to find them elsewhere. Utilize reusable containers (preferably glass for the environment) whenever possible and keep them with you wherever you go.

humua

 7 Premium Snacks To Rev Your Engine:

1. Veggies and hummus

  • The hummus provides both blood sugar stabilizing protein and healthy fats for satiation and energy! Making your own hummus is the best option but keeping some store-bought ones handy will keep you on track when in a pinch.
  • What to look for: dairy free, soy free and organic with as little preservatives as possible. General rule of thumb: the less ingredients on the label, the better and if you don’t recognize an ingredient as a food, your body likely won’t either.

2. Organic apples and bananas

  • Apples MUST be bought organic. They are part of the dirty dozen of the most highly contaminated fruits and vegetables. Bananas, though organic usually offers higher nutrition, do not have to be organic as they can be peeled.
  • Both provide fibre to fill you, while being a light and easily digestible snack and can be paired with cinnamon or almond butter.

 coco

3. Fresh coconut

  • For this weekends auto show in Toronto, this was my snack of choice along with bananas and carrot sticks. Fresh coconut offers a fantastic dose of healthy fats that satiated myself (my friend is not a big fan of coconut) and is utilized as energy in the body, especially when actively scouting out exotic cars for the day.

4. Quinoa

  • Quinoa is a complete protein, as it contains all essential amino acids and is an excellent source of fibre. Prepared ahead of time and kept in the fridge, this  is a great grab and go with a little lemon juice or extra virgin olive oil and Himalayan salt.

kale chips

5. Kale chips

  • Better and more cost-effective when homemade but alternatively available in many health food stores. There are many, many recipes out there for kale chips and they are simple to make, light, crunchy, and a little bit salty for a perfect snack.

6. Avocado

  • Simply cut it in half (a plastic knife will do the trick), twist the halves apart and enjoy with a spoon. The fats in avocados are incredibly nutritious and beautifying but will also help you to feel full longer without feeling over-stuffed.
  • Though fats are essential, if trying to lose weight I recommend sticking to the portion size of just half an avo a day. Otherwise, a full avocado as a snack on the go is a great option! I love pairing mine with garlic powder (when not at a public event of course!), Himalayan salt and red pepper flakes or salsa.

7. Smoothies

  • This is a super simple way to eat on the go. You can blend anything you would like into your smoothies which provide compact nutrition, hydration when using coconut water, and fibre. Smoothies are filling and can utilize some of those greens that you haven’t had a chance to sit down and eat, with a fuss free cleanup.

No matter where you go, stay fueled with holistic snacks to glow.

Fueling on premium,

Suzanne Eden

Ask Eden // The Quickie Guide To Blending Vs. Juicing

Hopping from Easter to a post-chocolate cleanse?
 
I hope you all had a holistically healthy holiday yesterday but if chocolate and sweets jumped their way onto the menu, you may be feeling in need of a little reboot today! A great place to start is to increase the amount of vegetables and leafy greens you consume to alkalinize the body and provide valuable fibre to push out the toxins. But what if you already feel pressed to incorporate enough into your diet on any given day? One of my favourite holistic life hacks to increasing your intake of greens is through green smoothies and juices, which leafs us with this week’s Ask Eden and one of the questions I’m quite frequently asked from clients;
“Which is better; juicing or blending?” 
 
The answer? I love them both! Both are beneficial when applied properly.
Saturday morning, for instance, I blended a large smoothie for a quick breakfast on the go as my best friend and I set off for a mini road trip.
A blend of; banana | coconut water | chaga | cinnamon | spirulina | acai | cacao (I love chocolate as an energy boost!)
Smoothie on the go
Last night, on the other hand, I was spoiled with a buffet of delicious food and veggie trays at my grandparents’ house in the country and woke this morning not feeling the need for a big meal. Instead of reaching for my regular green smoothie, I dusted off my juicer and pressed my favourite sunrise juice of orange, carrot and ginger and added romaine lettuce and lemon. The orange being graciously supplied by the Holistic Easter basket left for me with equal parts Giddy Yoyo dark chocolate and fresh fruit!
Holistic easter
So what is the difference? Is one more beneficial than the other? And how do you eat them to reap the most benefit from them?
It’s not the first time I’ve had this question asked and it’s a great one so without further ado, this is
your quickie guide to smoothies vs juices:
The WHOLE story
  • When you eat a smoothie, you are consuming the whole food and keeping the fibre intact to reap its full spectrum of benefits.
  • When you juice, you extract the water and nutrients and discard of the fibre. This allows you to make the nutrients more readily available to your body in much larger quantities. For instance, you could easily use an entire head of lettuce in a juice as opposed to a few leaves you might pack in your smoothie. However, you lose the beneficial properties of the fibre.

Smoothies are full of it

  • The fibre in smoothies will help to fill you faster and keep you satiated for longer as it provides bulk. This makes smoothies filling and suitable as a light meal. It is also the fibre that will bind to toxins to excrete them from the body when cleansing.
  • Without the fibre content in juices, you are likely feeling hungry faster. However, this makes a juice an ideal snack or addition to a meal when consumed 20 minutes beforehand (drinking too close to your meals will dilute your natural digestive juices).

Digest This

  • Smoothies are fantastic for digestion as they do much of the “breakdown” for your body. Blending your smoothie with a powerful blender (I use a Vitamix), breaks down the cell walls and pulverizes the food, taking a load off of your system which means more energy for you to go about your day. The high fibre content of a good smoothie will also help to regulate your bowels that may be compromised from poor diegstion.
  • With the fibre removed from juicing, it’s that extra step to make it even easier on your body  to digest and absorb the nutrients making it an ideal, energizing option when digestion is sluggish (after a delicious Easter dinner perhaps?).

 

The Nutrient Zap

  • The fibre in smoothies assists in slowing the digestive process to steady the flow of nutrients that hit your blood stream.
  • Without fibre, juicing creates a rapid surge of nutrients straight to the bloodstream so that you get the instant nutrient zap. The warning: this means that without the fibre, fruit will rapidly spike blood sugar and must be balanced with greens to avoid the potential jitters, mood swings, energy slumps and so forth that may result from imbalanced blood sugar.
Pressed for time 
  • With smoothies you simply blend and go with only the need to quickly wash out your blender.
  • Juices take more time to cut veggies and funnel through the nozzle into the blade. Then comes the washing of all of the separate parts, including the mesh cylinder.

 

Sunrise Juice

The above is this morning’s sunrise juice and the official sign that spring has sprung in our flower garden!

To Juice or to Blend, That is the Question!

My main beverage of choice? A smoothie! Quick, filling, and a whole food, smoothies are a staple of my diet and my number one go to through busy days. However, if I need a big dose of greens or my digestion is feeling a little sluggish, I will pull out my quality juicer and give it a go.

The key to blending or juicing? It is all about the right time, for the right person, in the right amounts.

A few keys:

  • Juices must, I repeat MUST be organic! Without the fibre to steady and bind to the toxic pesticides, you are absorbing those straight into your bloodstream. Be very careful of this when going to juice bars.
  • Because of the ability to jam pack juices with nutrients, it can be easy to overdo it on a given nutrient and aggravate certain conditions of the body. Be aware of this and practise moderation and variety.
  • Juices should be consumed ideally within the first 15 minutes of being made as light and air will destroy the vulnerable and valuable nutrients.
  • Smoothies MUST be chewed as drinking makes the body think that there is nothing to digest. The act of chewing stimulates the entire digestive system to prepare to digest food.

So, to juice or to blend, hopefully this post answers that question and whichever you choose for today, I wish you all an Easter Monday packed with green leaves and green hikes full of spring’s budding blooms!

 

Hopping into a juicy post Easter cleanse,

Suzanne Eden