Anti-inflammatory Smoothie: pineapple green smoothie
I love green smoothies! It’s an easy way to get in an extra serving of greens without having to eat ton of salad. Because really, are you ever going to eat salad for breakfast? No, probably not, especially because there’s no fast way to eat a salad. And if you’re like me, your mornings are probably filled with getting kids ready or rushing to get out the door for work. So green smoothies allow me to get that extra serving of vegetables even on the go.
One thing I dislike about most green smoothie recipes is that they usually include a TON of fruit. For example, they might have 2-3 servings of fruit to hide the flavor of the (very little) greens. Fruits and vegetables contain a ton of vitamins and minerals, but these smoothies end up being huge sugar bombs. And with very little protein or fat to prevent a huge insulin spike, they’re not a very balanced meal.
Yes, it’s natural sugar from fruits, so it’s way better than artificial sugars. But these smoothies still rack up a lot of carbs from sugar in the fruit. And I don’t know about you, but I much prefer to eat my carbs rather than drink them all blended up.
A More Balanced Green Smoothie
Instead, I like to keep my green smoothies balanced with some protein (especially for pre- or post- workout nutrition) and even add some avocado for a healthy dose of healthy fats and a velvety smooth texture.
Ingredients in the Anti-inflammatory smoothie
For my greens, I usually prefer spinach because it packs a lot of nutrients with a very mild flavor. Which means you can add 1 cup of packed spinach (or more!) and need very little fruit to hide any vegetable flavor.
Pineapple is one of my favorite fruits to add to green smoothies because it’s a powerful flavor even in small amounts. But besides flavor, it also has numerous health benefits. And its anti-inflammatory compounds and enzymes that can fight inflammation and disease.
Health Benefits of Pineapples
- They’re rich in flavonoids and phenolic acids, which are antioxidants that fight oxidative stress.
- Pineapples contain bromelain, a digestive enzyme that can reduce inflammation, swelling, pain, and bruising after surgery and even speed up recovery after strenuous exercise.
- Boosts immunity and lower the risk of bacterial and viral infections.
- Minimizes joint pain by reducing inflammation
And the best part about pineapple is that it’s readily available (fresh, frozen, or canned), affordable, and easy to add to smoothies.
Avocado and Spinach
Avocado is a good substitute for a banana in a smoothie. It provides a creamy texture and healthy fats without the extra carbs. And once the avocado and spinach are blended up with a powerful high-speed blender, you can’t even taste them! I love the Nutribullet Pro to fully pulverize the spinach to avoid gross chunks of spinach.
Of course, avocados and spinach both have numerous benefits too. Both are rich in folate, a nutrient that protects again DNA mutations during cell division and prevents the build up of homocysteine. Those sound like a lot of science-y words, but it really comes down to protecting against cancer, lowering the risk of depression, and supporting a healthy pregnancy by reducing the risk of miscarriage or neural tube defects.
MTHFR and Folate
Did you know that somewhere around 35% of women have a defect known as MTHFR? Basically, it means the body has a reduced ability to process and convert synthetic folic acid to methylfolate. Folic acid is what’s in most vitamins and added to foods. Methylfolate is the biologically active form of folate that can be used by the body. And it’s most common in Caucasion and Hispanic women.
I found out I had this defect after multiple miscarriages. So now I try to get most of my daily folate requirements from whole foods like spinach, avocado, and broccoli. I also supplement with a multivitamin containing methylated folate (the active, usable form).
Vanilla Protein Powder
If you’re looking for a dairy-free, gluten-free, soy-free, additive-free, vegan option that still tastes great, I recommend Dale’s Raw Protein. It’s high in protein, low in fat and carbs, and the plant-based protein is gentle on sensitive stomachs. And because dairy can be inflammatory, a plant-based protein is the perfect addition to this anti-inflammatory smoothie.
Legion Athletics Whey+ French Vanilla is another good option. It contains dairy, but it’s still a high-quality product with no junk fillers.
Energy-Boosting and Health-Promoting
And that’s why this anti-inflammatory smoothie is an energy-boosting, health-promoting powerhouse! It’s great for pregnant women wanting to feel energized and provide their baby with lots of nutrients. It’s great for anyone recovering from surgery needing the extra protein boost to speed up wound healing and recovery. And it’s good for anyone just wanting a healthy, delicious, and nutritious meal or snack without excess sugar!
Do you like avocado in your smoothie? Give it a try and let me know!
If you make this recipe, snap a pic and tag me @fit.and.fulfilled! I’d love to see your creations!