Smoothies to beat the winter blues

Juicing isn’t just a bikini-body thing. Here are five health-boosting recipes to try right now.

 

Immune boosting smoothie

Credit: Neals Yard Remedies
Credit: Neals Yard Remedies

Packed with antioxidants, vitamin C and immune-boosting herbs.

Cover a handful each of goji berries and mulberries with water to soak and rehydrate while you prepare the other ingredients.

Into a blender, add:

A handful of Blackberries
A handful of Blueberries
Juice of a quarter of a lemon
500 mls almond or rice milk
100 mls coconut water
2 tsp honey (Manuka if you can)

Add the soaked goji and mulberries including the water. Add a pinch of cinnamon powder. Blend well and serve.

This makes two large servings and is best drunk fresh to preserve its vitamin content.

Benefits
Blackberries, blueberries, goji berries, mulberries and lemon are all rich in antioxidants and have high levels of vitamin C, minerals, proteins and trace elements to strengthen the body’s natural defenses. Goji berries were used in the Himalayas as a medicinal food for 3,000 years.

Almond milk, rice milk or hemp milk are healthier alternatives to dairy.

Coconut water is high in electrolytes to increases hydration.

Traditionally used to defend against bacteria, honey’s health benefits have been noted in texts more than 4,000 years old

Cinnamon is an antiviral and traditionally used to warm and boost circulation.

 

Cold & flu relief

Credit: Neals Yard Remedies
Credit: Neals Yard Remedies

A tasty juice combined with well-researched antiviral and immunity herbs to combat the symptoms of colds and flu.

Begin by infusing in a cup of hot water the following antiviral immunity dried herbs: 1 tsp olive leaf, 1 tsp sage, 1 tsp echinacea and grated 1-3 cm of fresh ginger. Leave to infuse for 15 minutes while you prepare the other ingredients.

Juice four large oranges and one lemon, a handful of crushed fresh mint and three tsp of honey (manuka if you can).

Using a strainer, add the cooled herbal infusion.

 

Benefits

Olive leaf is high in oleuropein which exhibits antibacterial, antiviral and antifungal activity, and is useful for fighting various types of internal infections.

Native Americans may have used echinacea for more than 400 years to treat infections and wounds and as a general “cure-all” due to its high amounts of polysaccharides.

Sage was traditionally used to induce sweating to eliminate toxins and to relieve bronchial congestion.

Ginger’s warming properties help the body to throw off a cold whilst decongesting the nasal passages plus it’s known to have anti-nausea benefits.

Orange and lemon boost vitamin C levels.

 

Circulation tonic

Credit: Neals Yard Remedies
Credit: Neals Yard Remedies

Joint conditions and even cellulite benefit from warming and circulation-boosting herbs, which have nature’s supply of vitamins, calcium and glucosomine.

Begin by infusing 1 tsp of dried rosemary in a cup of hot water or 2 tsp of fresh herbs.

Juice the following:
2 beets
1 large handful of watercress
1 medium cucumber
2 sticks of celery
½ a lemon including the peel
2-3 cm of fresh ginger root

Add¼ tsp of cayenne powder and ½ tsp of turmeric powder.

Using a strainer, add the cooled herbal infusion once chilled

Benefits
Beets are high in nitrates for healthy blood flow.

Watercress is rich in calcium and vitamin K for healthy bones.

Cucumber is a rich source of triterpene phytonutrients called cucurbitacins.

Celery maintains hydration and is rich in amino acids.

Lemon has high levels of Vitamin C and energy-boosting.

Ginger has warming properties ideal for increasing circulation and may help with joint stiffness.

Cayenne regulates the blood flow and strengthens the arteries and capillaries.

Used traditionally in ayurvedic preparations to improve circulation, turmeric increases lymphatic drainage and acts as an anti-inflammatory.

 

Gym buddy

Credit: Neals Yard Remedies
Credit: Neals Yard Remedies

Great to drink during or before exercise to increase metabolism, hydrate and boost eloctrolytes and B vitamins.

Begin by infusing 1 heaped tsp of green tea leaves in a cup of hot water.

Juice the following:
2 grapefruit
1 lemon
2 cm ginger

Add the strained and chilled green tea infusion.

Benefits
Green tea boosts metabolism and burns fat.

Grapefruit and lemon detoxify and give energy.

Ginger increases circulation and may help with joint stiffness.

 

Ultimate skin radiance

With enzymes and herbs to cleanse, anti-inflammatory herbs for clear skin and high-antioxidant vitamins to protect, this tonic works for all skin types, hair and nails.

Juice the following:
1/2 of a papaya
1/4 of a pineapple
2 handfuls of spinach
1 apple
4 small florets of broccoli

Whisk in:
½ tsp turmeric powder

For a truly super version, add one avocado.

Combine the juice and blended ingredients and add filtered water to reach desired consistency.

Benefits
Papaya contains papain and chymopapain enzymes help prevent inflammation. High in betacarotene to protect the skin cells from UV damage.

Pineapple aids with digestion by helping the body break down proteins and prevents inflammation, which in turn is anti-aging.

Spinach is rich in lutein to keep your eyes healthy and sparkling. Spinach is also a good source of vitamins A, B, C, and E, potassium, calcium, iron, magnesium and omega-3 fatty acids — it aids collagen formation and protects against free radicals.

Broccoli contains glucoraphanin, which gets converted into sulforaphane, resulting in healthy skin and reparation of skin damage. Also contains vitamins C and E for healthy collagen.

The alkalinity in apples assists in cleansing the destructive toxins and waste by-products from the liver in addition to maintaining the pH levels of body. Pectin, present in apple’s skin, promotes the digestive system.

Turmeric increases lymphatic drainage and brightens the skin.

Recipes courtesy of Suzanne Colston-Lynch, head of training at Neal’s Yard Remedies, a British retailer of organic natural health and beauty products. us.nyrorganic.com



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