Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Killer Combonations: Fruit Drink

Sometime in the '90, anything that came out of the blender became a smoothie. Juice bars went mainstream, ie. Jamba Juice. Smoothies were added to the menu at places like Orange Julius and Sonic. The entire time I'm wondering what in the heck is new about fruit in a blender, besides it's new infantile name? Smoothie?I don't even like to say the word . . . I don't like the way it feels coming out of my mouth in reference to a food.

At my house, we blend up Fruit Drinks. Not super creative or descriptive. Still, it's been a breakfast winner for me since 1983.

Simple and pure is the best way to blend them. I'm resistant to the "add in's" craze that's so en vogue right now - protein powder, vitamin powder, vitamin water, powdered fiber, etc. If I need protein, I eat real protein (peanut butter, quinoa, eggs). If I need some fiber, no problem. Almost all whole foods, the way God made them, carry a butt load of fiber (pun intended, gross I know).

When it comes to breakfast, the body is in cleansing mode. Easy to digest fruit is a perfect way to wake up the body and the digestive system. Therefore, a fruit only Fruit Drink is perfect.

"But I get so hungry mid-morning if I don't have any protein," you say? So Eat! There is nothing wrong with being hungry!

When we try to combine fruits with grains with proteins our digestive process comes to a screeching halt. Fruits digest quickly in the stomach. Starches a little slower. Proteins digest slower in the colon rather than in the stomach. When all dietary components mix in one meal, none of them digest properly. Instead, they ferment in the stomach, making you feel full yes, but also gassy, bloated, and constipated. Hello colon cancer!

With this in mind, it is best to eat in-common digestive combinations. Eat fruits, Starches (grains, potatoes, carrots, etc), and proteins (meat, dairy, eggs) separately. Vegetables and legumes can be mixed with grains and proteins liberally.

Easy to Follow plan . . .

Breakfast - fruit (especially after an evening of heavy foods)
Lunch - protein and vegetables
Dinner - carbohydrate and vegetable

You will learn how to be hungry again.
You will naturally eat healthy, appropriate portions.
You will be energized rather than weighed down after a meal.
You will poop properly (floaters at least once a day).
You will probably lose weight while actually eating!
You will all but eliminate unhealthy cravings (not healthy hunger) since your body will absorb more nutrients from your food. Many cravings are symptoms of a nutrient deficiency.

So have a Fruit Drink, pack a piece of fruit for a mid-morning snack, and save your protein for lunch or dinner.

My favorite fruit drink growing up was, and still is, Pineapple-Strawberry-Banana. My grandma always did banana thinned with water (ugh). If we were lucky, she'd use apple juice. My point . . . you can add any fruit you want but you must start with bananas. The banana is what creates the thick, whipped, smooth texture.

2 bananas
1 cup frozen strawberries (or other frozen fruit, blueberries are fantastic too)
3 cups pineapple juice (any juice will do but pineapple or orange is best)

Combine all ingredients a blender and blend on high. Add more liquid as need to get the mixture swirling. Serve immediately. If you save it, the drink tends to melt and separate. Simple shake it up and serve.

Serves 2

Super Fruit Drink - Pomegranate juice, bananas, and frozen blueberries
Tropicana - Orange juice, bananas, mango
Green Goodness - Kiwi, banana, white grape juice
Ruby Tart - Frozen Raspberries, banana, cran-apple juice

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