8 Superfood Smoothie Ingredients You Can't Live Without!

Posted on May 22, 2015 by Not Your Sugar Mamas | 0 Comments

In the Not Your Sugar Mama kitchen, smoothies are spun and sipped on the daily. We’re always experimenting with the season’s ingredients and creating new combinations. In the winter, we love pomegranate, pear, and orange, and in the summer we like watermelon, berries, and cucumbers. Despite the changing seasons, there are a few key ingredients that we always have on hand to make any creation a power-packed, energizing super smoothie.

Here’s a list of our must-have Super Smoothie makin’ ingredients:

1. MACA // As one of the key ingredients in our Rose Maca bar, we are big fans of this one. Maca is a root vegetable grown high in the Peruvian Andes that has been used for thousands of years by Incas as medicine and food. This root is an adaptogen, which means it brings balance by helping the body to regulate stressors in its environment.  Maca provides calcium, phosphorus, vitamin B12 and B1 & B2, vitamin C, over 20 different fatty acids, as well as many minerals, essential amino acids, and enzymes. These nutrients support the nervous, digestive, and reproductive systems and help reduce adrenal stress to bring our bodies into balance. Read more about why we love maca on our ingredients page. Add 2-3 teaspoons of Maca to a 12 oz smoothie. 

2. MATCHA // To create Matcha, special shade-grown green tea leaves are dried and ground into a very fine powder. The benefits of Matcha are consistent with green tea but amplified due to the high concentration of matcha. Matcha contains L-Theanine, a unique amino acid believed to reduce stress and improve mental clarity. It also contains caffeine, making it a good substitute for coffee, and loads of antioxidants! Add ½ a teaspoon of matcha powder to a 12 oz smoothie.

3. SPIRULINA // This is one of the most nutrient-dense foods on the planet. It serves as a complete, balanced protein providing all 8 essential amino acids. It has very high levels of antioxidants. It also contains blood purification properties and is one of the only sources of the anti-inflammatory, joint-strengthening omega-6 fatty acid, GLA (gamma linolenic acid). Add 1 teaspoon of spirulina to a 12 oz smoothie.

4. TURMERIC // A plant native to India, Turmeric has been used for centuries as a key ingredient in Asian cuisine and for medicinal purposes. The key compound that makes Turmeric so powerful is curcumin. Curcumin is a powerful antioxidant and has strong anti-inflammatory effects helping to prevent chronic inflammation which leads to cancer, obesity, Alzheimer’s and other diseases. In some studies, curcumin has proven as or more effective than anti-inflammatory pharmaceutical drugs, without the side effects. Add ½ tsp of ground turmeric powder of ½ inch of fresh root to a smoothie per 8 oz smoothie.

5. CHIA SEEDS // “Chia” is the ancient Mayan world for “strength”. The Mayans used it for as a source of sustainable energy. One ounce (about 2 tablespoons) of chia seeds contains 11 grams of fiber (reduces inflammation and helps with digestion) , 4 grams of protein (helps you feel full and satisfied), 5 grams of Omega-3 fat (reduce cholesterol and improve cognitive function). Chia seeds also to help regulate blood sugar, so adding to a smoothie is a perfect way to  make sure your smoothie doesn’t give you a sugar high! Chia seeds can be digested whole, are super versatile, and will significantly boost the nutritional value of any recipe! Add 1 tablespoon of chia seeds to a 12 oz smoothie

6. ALMOND MILK // Vegan or not, almond milk is a great alternative to milk in almost any recipe. Per serving, it has half as many calories as 2% milk, and has no saturated fat or cholesterol. It’s high in vitamin E (gorgeous hair and skin!) and vitamin B (strong muscles). Almond milk is easy drinkin’ and suitable for those with a lactose intolerance. Replace milk or water with almond milk in whatever recipe you are using.

7. HEMP PROTEIN // Hemp protein is a vegan-friendly option to upping protein intake. It’s high in fiber and therefore easily digested which means it will be better utilized and absorbed in the body. It has a complete spectrum of organic proteins including all 20 amino acids that are USED in the human body. The important thing about proteins found in hemp is that they are similar to those found in the human body because hemp uses the right quantities to help our bodies make the protein it needs. Hemp contains the Essential Fatty Acids (EFAs) omega-3 and omega 6 in a healthy 3:1 ratio. It contains the hard to get gamma linolenic acid GLA. Essential fats found in hemp help reduce food cravings and inflammation and improve circulation throughout the body.  That there are no known allergies to hemp foods! Hemp does not contain sugar, saturated fatty acids, trans fats, no cholesterol, and does not contain any THC. Follow the label of your hemp protein packaging to determine serving size.

8. RAW CACAO POWDER // Last but not least. We’ve said it (a million times) before, we’ll say it (at least a million times) again, the benefits of raw cacao powder are unbeatable! Cacao is the highest antioxidant food on the planet according to the Oxygen Radical Absorption Capacity chart with 10 grams of flavenol antioxidants per 100 grams. Antioxidants help free the body of free radicals which cause damage to our cells. And cacao makes you feel good with it’s 4 wonderful neurotransmitters: serotonin, dopamine, anandamide (the "bliss chemical") and phenylethylamine (PEA). Add 1-2 tablespoons per 12 oz smoothie.


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