I am excited to share my latest meal solution with you! It is a naturally detoxifying, nutrient-dense, and low-calorie meal which ensures you get roughly one-third of your daily protein requirements, plus three servings of vegetables and three servings of fruits! You are well on your way to feeling energized with this super-food powerhouse. Because of the berries and tomato it’s full of antioxidants, and the greens make it high in phytonutrients—those cleansing and detoxifying little miracle workers—while the lemon further boosts it alkalinity. It’s also organic if you stick with said produce, and almost entirely raw, so it retains all the nutrients that may typically lost through processing or cooking.
If you are hungry for more detailed nutrition information, you’ll be thrilled to know this smoothie provides all the Vitamin K you need in a day, plus 50% of the calcium, 60% of the iron, 40% of the potassium, 50% of the fiber, B12 and B6 for an average person. Plus, an immune system enhancing 340% of your RDA of Vitamin C!
I should forewarn you that the color may not be aesthetically appealing for anyone who is new to blending fruits and veggies. For you color enthusiasts, what hue do you get when you mix green and red? Brown, and in this case a kind of brownish-violet concoction from combining so many highly nutritious fruits and vegetables! So I will encourage you to get over your potential visual aversion and your body will be thankful for it. And if you still can’t get past the color then just close your eyes and drink it up, because it is truly satisfying and quite delicious.
Substitution Options: I use Almond Milk because it has a healthy fat content—which combined with complex carbohydrates and protein—is digested more slowly and allows you to feel satiated for longer, and is a good non-dairy option as well. You can always substitute with low or non-fat milk or a rice drink beverage if you prefer, and especially in the case of nut allergies, but keep it organic. You can also use this recipe as a template and use what you already have in your refrigerator; for example use spinach instead of kale, or strawberries instead of blueberries, or toss in a bit of left over fresh zucchini.
These are a great way to enhance an already powerful meal solution. I typically add about one tablespoon of a plant-based “green” powder that is full of Spirulina, dandelion greens, sea kelp, wheat grasses and other greens that I would not likely have fresh on hand or easily accessible. There are many brands on the market, so be sure to read the labels to ensure it is 100% organic, pure dried plants without fillers.
The protein powder is very clean and based on whey protein concentrate and isolate, and absent of sucralose, or other artificial sweeteners. Vanilla is a neutral flavor that goes well with this recipe.
If you take a multivitamin, you can simply add it in before you blend your drink. It will ensure you get your trace minerals and if you’re like me, you won’t have to try to choke it down with water later!
Makes 1 Large Serving
NUTRITION PROFILE CAL-290/PRO-29/CARB-50/FAT-3/SAT-0/CHO-20/SOD-224/FIB-12
PERCENT CALORIES FROM PRO-31%/CARB-46%/FAT-23%
What to Buy: Organic Produce and Support Local Growers Whenever Possible
1 cup unsweetened Almond Milk
1 small Lemon, ( juiced or puree with the rind in your juicer)
2 large Kale Leafs (any variety)
½ cup Berries (raspberries, blueberries, marionberries)
1 small Tomato
1 small Apple (cored)
1 Scoop each Vanilla Whey Protein Powder and Green SuperFood, such as Vitamineral Green — included in nutrient profile
2 Ice Cubes, for desired consistency
Sweetener: Stevia or Truvia packet to taste
What to do:
It’s best to use a Vitamix or Nutri-Bullet blender. If you have a standard kitchen blender you can still enjoy this smoothie, however you will want to strip the stem out of the kale as it’s very fibrous. Add almond milk first. Wash your fruits and vegetables then cut your produce into manageable portions to blend. Add the remaining ingredients at once and blend thoroughly. If you prefer your beverage colder or to have more of a shake consistency, you may add a few ice cubes. If you are using a Vitamix, you may use the tamper which helps force the ingredients to the bottom of the mixer for blending. Otherwise, you will need to cut your produce into smaller sizes to mix and may need to add a small amount of water to help blend. You will not likely need to add water if using a more powerful blender.
BE SURE TO VIST TONI AT WWW.TONIJULIAN.COM
This morning the San Jose Mercury News featured a story on the latest political debate in our community; a proposal to ban sugary drinks at city properties and events, pitched by our local City Councilman Ash Kalra.
“Are you freakin’ kidding me?” is the disappointing response by Councilman Pete Constant. He further went on to call the proposal “crazy” and “stupid”. (In my experience people typically stoop to name calling when they don’t have sound evidence for a fair argument or the educational background to make one—however, I digress.) Councilman Constant believes we need to fix our city and not to tell residents how to live their lives. Herein lies the disconnect; I believe the health of the city is dependent upon the health of its residents and the health of the residents is dependent in part of the quality of food we feed ourselves, and our children.
Over 90% of how we look and feel (and therefore behave and perform) is based on the quality of our food, I would argue the foods—and beverages– made available have a tremendous impact on the lifestyle and consequently the health of our communities.
Many of the burdens placed on our society is due to what I call “The American De-condition”1, a gradual decline in the state of our health based on poor lifestyle habits, lack of fitness and nutritional education. It is a well-documented fact that nearly 70% of all Americans are either overweight or obese, one of the leading contributors to a proliferation of medical issues. This may in fact be the first generation when parents outlive their children due to our deteriorating health condition as a nation. Inexcusably, we have passed down our sedentary lifestyles and poor eating habits to our children. We allow our children to eat the most convenient and lowest quality foods possible, and they have no idea how negatively their growing bodies are impacted by sugar consumption, displacing needed nutrients they would have received by having healthier options more readily available.
Our personal passivity and demand for convenience are our own worst enemies. Certainly we need to be accountable and make our own decisions as to what we put in our mouths, but why create a temptation in the first place? We as adults know how difficult it is to resist temptation, especially one that is genetically engraved in our DNA to survive, by craving sugar, salt and fat. Imagine how difficult it is for children and teens, who are a bit more impulsive, to make a healthier choice. Consider this: You have a bowl of M&M’s and peanuts on your kitchen counter or at your desk at work. If you have to pass by it wouldn’t you be tempted and even likely to graze on it all day? You could realistically consume an additional 1000 calories each day of unnecessary sugar and fat. But if it wasn’t so convenient, wouldn’t you likely be less impulsive to mindlessly reach for it, and further, would it even cross your mind at all?
By Councilman Kalra’s proposal, we are not dictating the decisions of how people should eat or drink, merely eliminating a few out of a multitude of opportunities for making a poor nutritional choice with the added benefit of providing options to make it simpler for us all to make healthier decisions. The proposal is also being criticized for inconsistencies, for example, why offer healthy whole juice choices when corn dogs are still served? Take a step back, a deep breath and look at the big picture. Why are high-fat, overly processed foods being served in the first place?
It’s simple, it’s called social responsibility. The proposal is a solid first step in effecting change. We have an unprecedented opportunity here to change our lives, our family’s lives, the lives within our community, and beyond. Simple measures to help guide our communities to make healthier lifestyle choices seem common sense to me.
Councilman Ash Kalra has my full support as a health advocate, nutritionist, 50-something mom of four and San Jose native. If it’s a food fight you’re looking for, count me in.
1Julian, Toni (2011). BITE ME! Change Your Life One Bite at a Time—An Inspirational Journey of Reinvention to a Healthy, Sustainable Lifestyle. (1st ed). San Jose, CA: AABS Nutrition & Fitness
San Jose Mercury News, Ban on Sugary Drinks Pitched August 24, 2013