Extra Ingredients for Green Smoothies [Part 5 of 8]
Here are more ideas of additions to your smoothies–exotic stuff, more expensive, but adding variety and superfood qualities:
Organic chocolate bars and acai berries are often marketed together. (And no wonder–it’s a delicious, if expensive, combination.)
Dark chocolate has been touted in recent years for its very high ORAC score (high antioxidants and consequent ability to protect against free radicals that age us and cause disease). Some people are confused by this and think that chocolate products found in health food stores are, then, high-nutrition items. Most products, even those marketed to health nuts like you and me, have sweeteners added (sometimes even processed sweeteners) and are cooked to eliminate the benefits of enzymes. They also have additives like alkali that are not beneficial or even destructive. One network marketed candy claims to be a health food, and it costs $60/lb., is artificially sweetened, and isn’t even organic. You can spend $10/lb. for raw dark chocolate bars in the health food stores, and that’s still a pricy treat.
The one type of chocolate I would advocate you adding to your green smoothies is raw, organic cacao nibs or powdered cacao. You can find these products online (Amazon is probably the cheapest) or in a health food store. They make lovely treats and smoothies, when you add raw, organic and blend them with frozen berries in a smoothie (coconut milk or meat or almond mylk are also good additions, making fantastic dessert-like concoctions in your Total Blender). But raw chocolate products are extremely expensive.
Coconut oil or liquid or meat
Raw coconut is prized for its antibacterial, antimicrobial, antifungal, and antiviral properties. Dr. Bruce Fife’s The Coconut Oil Miracle effectively covers the research on this rather miraculous food, showing how a fat is not always a fat. Non-westernized Pacific Islanders have ideal height-weight ratios and virtually no heart disease; they are some of the most beautiful people on the planet. And their diet is so heavily coconut, that despite it being a “saturated” fat, the Pacific-Islander indigenous diet is sometimes as high as 60 percent calories from fat, with extremely low rates of overweight people. They don’t suffer from anxiety and depression, and they don’t get cancer.
The meat of coconut is a great raw dessert recipe ingredient that I use a lot in Ch. 11 of 12 Steps to Whole Foods (on GreenSmoothieGirl.com). If you buy the young Thai coconuts, found most inexpensively in Asian markets, you can drain the liquid and scrape the meat out–I have a YouTube video showing how to do this most easily.
You can certainly add coconut meat to your green smoothies, though it will thicken it considerably, so extra water (or coconut liquid) should be added.
Coconut liquid is low in fat, tastes delicious, and is so electrolyte rich that it is now sold in boxes with straws, in the refrigerated section in health food stores with the sports drinks. It’s a perfect drink for an athlete to balance electrolytes, so much better than the other commercial sports drinks that contain lots of chemicals plus artificial sweeteners and colors. It’s also high in minerals, and pre-eminent raw foodist David Wolfe calls it a “blood transfusion” because of the way is closely parallels human blood chemistry and how it nourishes us so exactly.
And coconut oil is a power food as well, harnessing the anti-viral and anti-bacterial properties and fat-burning power of the coconut. If you do add coconut oil to your green smoothies, blend it in well to the non-refrigerated and non-frozen items, first. It becomes solid at 76 degrees, so you may have tiny little solid particles of the oil in your smoothie. Dr. Fife recommends a couple of tablespoons daily for the average adult in the diet and/or absorbed into the bloodstream by using it on the skin and lips as a moisturizer.