strawberry banana smoothie fresh blended on wood table top view

Strawberry Banana Smoothie

strawberry banana smoothie fresh blended on wood table top view

 

Whether you’re a strawberry smoothie, banana smoothie or a mixed strawberry banana smoothie kinda person, this one’s got a little extra something to boost your long term health. Smoothies are one of my favourite ways to get a ton of nutrition in an easy to consume format.

 

Despite fears of sugar and carbs, a well-planned smoothie that has lots of protein, fat and fiber will be digested nice and slowly. This does a couple of things; 1] helps to keep you feeling full longer and 2], balances blood sugar because fat, protein and fiber are what I call “the golden trio”. Together they work to increase satiety which may help you to eat less by keeping hunger at bay.

 

As I said, smoothies are a very convenient way to pack in the nutrition; easy to prepare, smoothies make a great meal for all ages. Smoothies don’t have to be all about fruit. You can sneak if veggies too. Cooled cooked, fresh or frozen spinach, canned or cooled cooked carrots, sweet potatoes, or some ground seeds like flax and chia. Have you ever considered a mild-tasting legume like chickpeas, white kidney beans or even lentils? Give it a try! 🙂

Brazil nuts nutrition

Brazil nuts for selenium for the win. This extra something in this smoothie is one of, if not they best, source of dietary selenium. Your body uses this mineral to make a molecule called glutathioneGlutathione (GSH) is often referred to as the master antioxidant or the master detoxifier. GSH is a potent antioxidant that is used to protect your body against oxidation; think of it as a way to help rust-proof your body.

 

GSH helps to lower inflammation, supports the immune system, and plays a crucial role in protecting your thyroid gland; helping to reduce thyroid disease. GSH is used by the liver when it does its job of detoxification. Quite literally, a molecule of GSH is attached to toxins so that they can be excreted by your body. In fact, low levels of GSH can lead to impaired detoxification, a common occurrence with Tylenol misuse and abuse, as well as, other substances.

 

Brazil nuts on a wooden table top

 

Bananas and prebiotic fiber

Perhaps not known for their fiber content like wheat bran or rolled oats are, bananas are a great source of prebiotic fiber, also called resistant starch. Prebiotic fibers are a food source for the trillions of microorganisms that live in your gut. What’s different about prebiotic fiber versus other dietary fibers is that prebiotics selectively increase the amount of beneficial bacteria in your digestive tract. It’s not just all about potassium when it comes to bananas!

Nutrition boosters

Other boosters to elevate the nutritional bang of this smoothie includes

  • a source of omega-3 (EPA & DHA) such as fish, calamari (squid) or algae oil
  • ground flax seeds or chia seeds for lignans (flax), fiber, minerals and plant-based omega3 (not the same as EPA & DHA)
  • wheat germ for vitamin E
  • cinnamon – phytonutrients

 

Strawberry Banana Smoothie

Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 12 minutes
Total Time 17 minutes

Ingredients

  • 1.5 cups fortified soy, almond, rice beverage, milk
  • 1.5 cups strawberries (fresh or frozen)
  • 2 medium bananas
  • 2 tbsp chopped Brazil nuts
  • 2 tbsp ground flax of chia seeds
  • 2 tbsp wheat germ
  • 2 tsp lemon fish, calamari or algae oil
  • 1/4 tsp cinnamon

Instructions

  1. 1. In a blender, or bullet style blender, combine all ingredients.

  2. 2. Secure the lid or, if using a bullet style blender, screw on the base with the blade securely. Blend until smoothie. Thin with water as needed.

Recipe Notes

TIP: 

1. If you want to add another source of prebiotic fiber, consider a potato starch such as MS Prebiotic brand. 

2. You can also try adding some fresh or frozen spinach, leafy greens  are a source of a unique prebiotic that boost healthy gut bacteria. 

Doug Cook RDN is a Toronto based integrative and functional nutritionist and dietitian with a focus on digestive, gut, and mental health.  Follow me on FacebookInstagram and Twitter.

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