Today I want to share with you a scrumptious smoothie recipe that’s perfect for September and the start of fall.
Every fall I think about how much I love this time of year. It feels like a time for starting new things, turning inward just a bit, and putting a little more emphasis on self-care.
With that in mind, this month my husband and I have agreed to support each other in eating extra well. And for me, that means having lots of green smoothies.
I recently wrote a little booklet about green smoothies (more about that shortly), and I’m so into them right now, that I hereby declare September Green Smoothie Month.
I know… fall is the season when green goes away and is replaced by brilliant reds, yellows and browns.
But even though there aren’t a lot of green leaves outside, your body doesn’t stop needing leafy greens.
In fact, it’s best to get lots of greens every day. But there are a few things you need to know about them first. So let’s…
Get to Know Greens
Eating many leafy greens regularly is great for you, but you need to rotate them. Why? For two main reasons:
1. Greens have differing nutritional profiles, and you’ll get the most beneficial phytonutrients, minerals, and so on if you eat a variety of them.
2. Raw leafy greens contain small amounts of a toxin that nature included to protect the plants from animal predators. For certain susceptible individuals, consuming huge amounts of the same green every day, such as kale, for example, can interfere with thyroid function and/or iron absorption. Most people can eat very large amounts of the same green for long periods of time without having any problems. But rotating your greens will alleviate this risk and provide the greatest benefits.
The easiest way to rotate greens is to buy two types of greens one week, two completely different greens the following week, and two entirely different types the week after that. Then you can either keep trying different greens or come back to some of the original ones.
I like to divide greens into two broad categories: milder and stronger. The stronger greens are some of the most nutritious. But you might enjoy the taste of your smoothies more if you use half milder greens and half stronger greens in them.
Here are the greens I include in each category:
- Beet greens
- Bok Choy
- Butter lettuce
- Leaf lettuce
- Sprouts (sunflower, alfalfa, clover)
- Mustard Greens
- Turnip greens
Herbs, the Forgotten Green
We don’t usually think of herbs as greens. But they’re actually the most nutritious greens of all. So I recommend including these in some of your smoothies:
Okay, so now I want to give you a recipe that combines some of the best fall flavors in one glass.
Cran-Apple Grape Green Smoothie
Yield: 3 1/2 cups, 2 servings
Crisp apple, cranberries, and grapes make this smoothie the ideal autumn elixir. You can use fresh or frozen cranberries. (Don’t worry about bitterness—the cranberries are naturally sweetened by the apple and grape.)
- 1 cup water, or 1 cup ice plus 1/2 cup water
- 1 apple, unpeeled and chopped
- 1/2 cup seedless red grapes
- 1/2 cup fresh or frozen cranberries
- 4 cups stemmed and chopped greens, lightly packed
Put all the ingredients in a blender and process on high speed until smooth.
If you’d like to have my entire collection of tasty, healthy, and energizing smoothie recipes, check out my new booklet Green Smoothies: The Easy Way to Get Your Greens.