Mango, Banana and Turmeric Smoothie
Baz Gale Author
It is summer and Mangoes are in season and cheap, and I will share with you a delicious smoothie I make each afternoon, my Mango, Banana and Turmeric smoothie. It is a drink I very much enjoy and is low on the calorie count. Any fresh fruit in season can be used, whatever you enjoy, the choice is yours. You could use pineapple, strawberries, blueberries, banana but I do include banana in this recipe. In the winter months you could use frozen berries, just make sure the pack only contains berries and nothing else added so please read the label.
Mango and Turmeric Recipe:
1 Fresh ripe Mango or any fruit of your choosing
1 fresh banana
1 cup of coconut water or half coconut water and half coconut cream for a more creamy drink
1/2 teaspoon of organic Turmeric to start, over time increase to 1 teaspoon
1/2 teaspoon of black pepper
1 teaspoon of organic coconut oil
1 teaspoon of fresh diced ginger
1 tablespoon of chia seeds, black or white seeds, does not matter
Process in a blender till smooth and creamy. You could also use half coconut water and half coconut cream for a more creamy drink but this will increase the calories.
Turmeric has been used in India for thousands of years and has powerful anti inflammatory and antioxidant properties due to the main active ingredient in turmeric called curcumin. Turmeric has been used for arthritis, heartburn, diarrhoea, stomach pain, headaches, jaundice and liver problems and studies have shown that turmeric is effective in treating and preventing a large range of diseases like heart disease and cancer. Turmeric is poorly absorbed in the body but studies have shown that adding some black pepper, about a quarter of a teaspoon, will boost the absorption rate by 2,000% and why I added black pepper to the smoothie. Turmeric also needs fat to increase absorption, and why I included coconut oil. I recommend organic turmeric powder because there is more chance that the turmeric will be pure, and about one teaspoon of Turmeric a day is the recommended dosage.
Caution: Turmeric thins the blood, this is good because it lowers the risk of heart attack and stroke, but if you are taking aspirin or warfarin for blood thinners please consult with your doctor first.
Coconut water is the clear liquid found in the centre of a young tender coconut, and is very different to coconut milk, the fattier pulped coconut meat. Coconut water is low fat, low calories and has less sugar than many sports drinks and much less sugar than soda's and many fruit drinks. It is highly nutritious and has lots of simple sugars, electrolytes and minerals that are good at rehydrating the body. In fact coconut water is a natural isotonic drink that provides many of the same benefits as formulated sports drinks, including the electrolytes calcium, magnesium, phosphorus, sodium and potassium, and with the added benefit that they are in their natural form.
It is a refreshing low fat drink on a hot day and is great when used instead of milk in a smoothie to keep the calories down. Just make sure it is pure coconut water and no added sugar.
Coconut oil is a fatty oil obtained from the flesh of the coconut and is used in cooking and cosmetics products. Coconut oil is a medium-chain saturated fatty acid, this allows it to be cooked at higher temperatures than most polyunsaturated or monounsaturated oils making it a more healthy choice in cooking. When you cook using say olive oil, a healthy oil when cold, the heat will make the oil oxidise creating free radicals. Although coconut oil is high in saturated fat, it is different to other saturated fats because it contains short term medium-chain fatty acids, a healthier form compared to trans fats that are long-chain fatty acids. In some parts of the world, coconut is a dietary stable food that populations have thrived on for generations, and there is no evidence of heart disease in these communities.
I use coconut oil in my cooking instead of vegetable oil whenever I use heat. For salad dressings I still use healthy olive oil.
Ginger is anti inflammatory and is a rich source of antioxidants and also has broad spectrum antibacterial, antiviral, and anti parasitic properties. Ginger is easy to prepare, once you peel it, you can slice it, grate it, or mince it to add to tea or cooked dishes. About a tablespoon full of diced ginger will give many health benefits, and I often use more than this each morning when I add ginger to my breakfast. And a nice hot ginger tea is great on a cold day. I would select fresh ginger over dried ginger because fresh has more flavour plus contains higher levels of its anti inflammatory compound.
Chia seeds contain 20% complete protein with all the essential amino acids. It is high in antioxidants containing a four times higher rating than blueberries. They are a good source of B vitamins and Chia contains seven times more vitamin C than an orange. Chia has over twice the iron content as liver and three times more iron than Spinach It also contains twice the potassium than a banana. The anti inflammatory properties have been found to be effective in reducing pain and inflammation, making chia beneficial for arthritic patients. Chia seeds are low in calories but rich in nutrients and very filling, so great for weight loss or maintaining a healthy weight.
One tablespoon twice a day will give you a great nutrition boost and also make sure you are drinking adequate water during the day due to the high fibre content. If you are not used to high fibre foods I would start with just one tea spoon a day. They can be sprinkled onto any food and I have also added chia seeds to a tossed salad. Chia can be used in cooking, added to breakfast cereal, bread, etc and I even add them to my smoothie.
Fruit is full of vitamins, minerals, fibre, antioxidants, low in calories, and tastes great. Fruit should be eaten fresh when in season as part of a healthy diet, and eating a range of different fruits, just as eating a range of different vegetables, will give you a yummy health kick.
Snacking on fresh fruit instead of snack food is a great way to reduce your calorie intake.
Mangoes in season make great delicious smoothies, as do bananas, strawberries, in fact any fruit that you enjoy will go well in a smoothie.