Autumn comes with some things we love the most: the warm and inviting aroma that sparks up memories of enjoying delicacies made with pumpkins and apples, the earthy fragrance as you go for a walk and the sound of stepping on crisp, colorful fall foliage. That is why we “fall” for this beautiful season. Making healthy food choices can be difficult when temptations of delicious fall desserts linger everywhere we go. However, there is good news! You can have a healthy diet and still enjoy that delicious fall food you crave.
Smoothies have become such a popular health trend because they offer the opportunity to enjoy healthy foods in an easy, delicious way. You can incorporate your daily dose of fall fruits and vegetables in your morning smoothies without sacrificing flavor or your health. Here are three healthy and delicious fall smoothie recipes:
- 1 sweet potato (small, about 1/2–2/3 cup)
- 1 banana
- 5–6 dates, pitted & chopped
- 1 cup almond milk
- 1/4 tsp. pumpkin pie Spice
- Optional: 1/2 scoop vanilla protein powder
- Prior to making the smoothie you will need to bake, steam or microwave the sweet potato and let cool completely — put in refrigerator for a few hours or overnight. I also find it's best to let the chopped and pitted dates soak in water (about 1/4 cup or so) for about 15–20 minutes to soften so they blend really well.
- Add all ingredients to blender, along with ice. Blend, pour into a glass and top with another sprinkle of pumpkin pie spice.
This vegan smoothie with a hint of Thanksgiving flavors is great for your heart as well. The sweet potato is packed with B6 vitamins, which aid in breaking down homocysteine, a substance that contributes to the hardening of blood vessels and arteries.
- 1 peach halved and pit removed
- 1 cup blueberries
- 1 banana
- 2 tablespoons fresh ginger, about 1 in. piece
- 2 scoops vanilla protein powder
- 2 tablespoons flax seed meal
- 1 cup water
Pulse all ingredients in a blender until smooth.
This heart-healthy smoothie contains ingredients that could potentially help your blood circulation and veins. Although these ingredients have not yet been medically proven to directly improve health, blueberries are often labeled a “super fruit”. According to Heal With Food, blueberries contain high levels of anthocyanin, which can promote healthy veins by repairing damaged protein structure in the blood vessels. The second power ingredient in this smoothie is ginger. Many believe ginger can dissolve fibrin in blood vessels and help to improve circulation.
- 1 beet root and greens
- 1 banana optionally frozen
- 3 tbsp. raw cacao powder or cocoa powder
- 2 tbsp. almond butter
- 1/2 cup fresh or frozen berries of your choice
- 1 cup unflavored soy or almond milk
- agave or maple syrup to taste
- Separate the beet greens from the root. Wash greens well (they tend to be a bit gritty) and coarsely chop. Peel the root portion and cut into one-inch chunks.
- Place beet roots and greens into blender, along with banana, cacao powder, almond butter and berries. Blend until smooth, stopping to scrape down sides of pitcher as needed. Add milk and sweetener to taste. Blend again until smooth.
Beets contain betacyanin, which is known to significantly reduce levels of homocysteine, a naturally occurring amino acid that can damage blood vessels. According to Healthline, “beets contain a high concentration of nitrates, which have a blood pressure-lowering effect. This may lead to a reduced risk of heart attacks, heart failure and stroke.”
There you have it! Indulge in some in-season fruit and vegetables that are both healthy and delicious!
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