After reading Julie Daniluk’s new book Hot Detox, which is freakin’ fantastic and super informative by the way, I now understand why I am drawn to spicing up my smoothies in the winter months. It also helped me not feel crazy when I had no desire to do a lengthy raw detox in a month when we are “supposed” to be doing one. It’s because we are meant to be warm in the winter! Gasp? No, really?
While I absolutely adore my smoothies, they can easily bring on the shivers in the chillier months. But that doesn’t mean you have to give them up if you are in a good routine of blending them, feel really good on them or just love them as much as I do.
My favourite way to warm up my smoothies is with the trifecta of spices: cinnamon, ginger and nutmeg. This spice blend is deliciousy cozy with nostalgic notes of all your favourite baked goods AND 2 sneaky servings of spinach!
Bananas are excellent for masking greens and you know how passionate I am about not missing an easy opportunity to start your day with greens. This is one of those easy opportunities.
Cinnamon is well known for improving blood sugar levels but did you also know that it has been shown to reduce the severity of painful periods?1 While painful periods and PMS are a clear sign of hormone imbalance, cinnamon can step in to relieve some of that pain in the meantime.
In addition to improving blood sugar levels2 and pre-menstrual pain3, ginger is a BFF to your digestive system. It acts as a carminative, which promotes the elimination of gas and an intestinal spasmolytic, which relaxes and soothes the intestinal tract. Ginger is a warming spice that promotes healthy sweating so it is a good detoxifier.
To round out this powerful trifecta, nutmeg has been shown to have antibacterial4, anticancer5 and antidepressant6 among some of its properties. Take a moment to remind yourself this is a spice not a prescription. Food really is medicine.
Sometimes I just can’t keep in my inner nerd with all the scientific proof and my passion for food. It’s exciting stuff in my world! I only hope that one iota of this passion diffuses into your world and you recognize the importance of eating primarily real food. And more importantly, eating a variety of real food.
Spicing up your smoothies is a great example of seasonal eating and I am a huge advocate of eating this way because it encourages you to eat a variety of real food without it being a diet or a label.
1. Comparative Effect of Cinnamon and Ibuprofen for Treatment of Primary Dysmenorrhea: A Randomized Double-Blind Clinical Trial. J Clin Diagn Res. 2015 Apr; 9(4): QC04–QC07. doi: 10.7860/JCDR/2015/12084.5783
2. Effects of ginger (Zingiber officinale) on plasma glucose level, HbA1c and insulin sensitivity in type 2 diabetic patients. Int J Food Sci Nutr. 2013 Sep;64(6):682-6. doi: 10.3109/09637486.2013.775223
3. Effect of treatment with ginger on the severity of premenstrual syndrome symptoms. ISRN Obstet Gynecol. 2014 May 4;2014:792708. doi: 10.1155/2014/792708
4. Antibacterial principles from Myristica fragrans seeds. J Med Food. 2006 Fall;9(3):395-9.
5. Inhibition of fos-jun-DNA complex formation by dihydroguaiaretic acid and in vitro cytotoxic effects on cancer cells. Cancer Lett. 1998 May 15;127(1-2):23-8.
6. Antidepressant-like activity of n-hexane extract of nutmeg (Myristica fragrans) seeds in mice. J Med Food. 2006 Spring;9(1):84-9.
Simple Spiced Smoothie
- 1 cup water or unsweetened nut milk
- 3 tbsp hemp hearts
- 1 tbsp unrefined coconut oil
- 1 tsp cinnamon
- ½ tsp ginger
- ⅛ tsp nutmeg
- 2 handfuls spinach
- 1 banana
Jessica Stopard http://jessicastopard.com/