The weather in the Northeast has been super super hot and humid. I would say it feels more like I am living in Miami right now with high heat and short thunderstorms almost everyday. This climate is not my cup of tea. I'm a bit like Goldielocks and prefer it to be not too hot or not too cold.
There is however good reason for my preference. I'm sun and heat sensitive, both exacerbating my autoimmune symptoms. Basically, I wilt when I step outside so it has been indoors for me except early and late in the day when the temperatures are only in the 80s. But that doesn't mean I haven't been craving tropical drinks during this tropical like weather. The problem is that I'm allergic to mangoes and bananas so instead I thought a cool berry concotion might hit the spot.
Now, I didn't follow an exact recipe and just taste tested as I went along. I've always enjoyed making mixtures and improvising as I cook. This time I added fresh blackberries, strawberries, blueberries (I only had a few in the fridge), a cup of ice, and a splash of black cherry juice. I included about two tablespoons of milk about half way through blending for smoother texture. Almond or Coconut milk would be good substitutes.
I do sometimes feel deprived because my food allergies prevent me from eating and drinking many of my favorites. So I am always excited when I experiment and make something new and delicious. It was definitely cool and refreshing. Maybe a little tart for some, but I wasn't in the mood for anything too sweet.
The best part is that it's super healthy with anti-inflammatory properties, low in calories, and very filling. Filling is important for me since I get hungry pretty frequently. These fruit shakes can work for breakfast, a snack, or dessert. It's also an easy way to make sure you're getting enough fruits and vegetables each day. I tend to eat enough fruit, but sometimes I skimp in the vegetable category. I've recently started using the CDC's fruit and vegetable calculator which tells you based on age, gender, and level of daily physical activity how many cups to have in a day. Click here to try it.
I think that this is just the beginning of my blending experiments. I'd like to try adding vegetables and fruits together for my next round. I'm thinking apples, pears, spinach, and blueberries. The longer term question is whether my health-shake making might cause some improvement in how I feel. I'm not expecting a miracle, but changes in my diet, like eliminating gluten, have made a large impact before.
As Hippocrates said, “Let food be thy medicine and medicine be thy food”
I would love to hear from others who are smoothie chefs about their favorite recipes and whether eating these smoothies and shakes have made a difference in any aspects of their health.