Oatmeal Strawberry Banana Smoothie

indexIngredients:

1/2 cup of oatmeal

1 tsp of wheat Germ

Sweetener of choice

1 banana

3/4 c of strawberries

1 c of ice

1 c of 2% milk

Directions:

Blend

Health Benefits of Bananas

indexCreamy, rich, and sweet, bananas are a favorite food for everyone from infants to elders. They could not be more convenient to enjoy, and they are a good source of both vitamins and minerals, as well as fiber.

Cardiovascular Health

A first type of cardiovascular benefit from bananas is related to their potassium content. Bananas are a good source of potassium, an essential mineral for maintaining normal blood pressure and heart function. Since one medium-sized banana contains a whopping 400-plus mg of potassium, the inclusion of bananas in your routine meal plan may help to prevent high blood pressure and protect against atherosclerosis.

The effectiveness of potassium-rich foods such as bananas in lowering blood pressure has been demonstrated by a number of studies. For example, researchers tracked over 40,000 American male health professionals over four years to determine the effects of diet on blood pressure. Men who ate diets higher in potassium-rich foods, as well as foods high in magnesium and cereal fiber, had a substantially reduced risk of stroke. We’ve also seen numerous prospective clinical research trials showing substantial reductions of blood pressure in individuals eating the potassium-rich DASH Diet.

A second type of cardiovascular benefit from bananas involves their sterol content. While bananas are a very low-fat food (less than 4% of their calories come from fat), one type of fat that they do contain in small amounts are sterols like sitosterol, campesterol, and stigmasterol. As these sterols look structurally similar to cholesterol, they can block the absorption of dietary cholesterol. By blocking absorption, they help us keep our blood cholesterol levels in check.

A third type of cardiovascular benefit from bananas involves their fiber content. At about 3 grams per medium banana, we rank bananas as a good source of fiber. Approximately one-third of the fiber in bananas is water-soluble fiber. For one medium-sized banana, this amount translates into 1 gram of soluble fiber per banana. Soluble fiber in food is a type of fiber especially associated with decreased risk of heart disease, making regular intake of bananas a potentially helpful approach to lowering your heart disease risk.

Digestive Benefits

Bananas are a fascinating fruit in terms of their carbohydrate and sugar content. Even though bananas are a fruit that tastes quite sweet when ripe—containing 14-15 grams of total sugar—bananas receive a rating of low in their glycemic index (GI) value. GI measures the impact of a food on our blood sugar. This low GI value for bananas is most likely related to two of their carbohydrate-related qualities.

First, as mentioned previously, a medium-size banana contains about 3 grams of total fiber. Fiber is a nutrient that helps regulate the speed of digestion, and by keeping digestion well-regulated, conversion of carbohydrates to simple sugars and release of simple sugars from digesting foods also stays well-regulated.

Within their total fiber content, bananas also contain pectins. Pectins are unique and complicated types of fiber. Some of the components in pectins are water-soluble, and others are not. As bananas ripen, their water-soluble pectins increase, and this increase is one of the key reasons why bananas become softer in texture as they ripen. As their water-soluble pectins increase, so does their relative concentration of fructose in comparison to other sugars. This increase in water-soluble pectins and higher proportional fructose content helps normalize the rate of carbohydrate digestion and moderates the impact of banana consumption on our blood sugar. The bottom line here are some surprisingly digestion-friendly consequences for a fruit that might be casually dismissed as being too high in sugar to be digestion-friendly.

Similar to the importance of their water-soluble pectins is the digestive importance of fructooligosaccharides (FOS) in bananas. FOS are unique fructose-containing carbohydrates that are typically not broken down by enzymes in our digestive tract. Instead, they move along through the digestive tract until they reach our lower intestine and get metabolized by bacteria. This process helps maintain the balance of “friendly” bacteria (for example, Bifidobacteria) in our lower intestine, and as a consequence, it also supports our overall digestive health.

In one study involving female participants, eating two bananas each day for two months led to significant increases in Bifidobacteria. Along with these increased levels of Bifidobacteria, participants also experienced fewer gastrointestinal problems and more regular bowel function when compared to other women in the study who drank a banana-flavored beverage that did not contain any actual banana.

Athletic performance

The unique mix of vitamins, minerals, and low glycemic carbohydrates in bananas has made them a favorite fruit among endurance athletes. Their easy portability, low expense, and great taste also help support their popularity in this exclusive group.

A 2012 study of distance cyclists found that eating the equivalent of about one half a banana every 15 minutes of a three-hour race was just as good at keeping energy levels steady as drinking an equivalent amount of carbohydrate and minerals from a processed sports beverage. Bananas have long been valued by athletes for prevention of muscle cramps. Since bananas are a good source of potassium, and since low potassium levels are known to contribute to risk of muscle cramps, it is logical to think about the potassium content of bananas as being the reason for fewer muscle cramps after consumption of bananas. There is actually some recent research in support of this reasoning. In a recent study, consumption of one or two bananas prior to an hour of exercise was shown to keep blood potassium levels higher after the training. But there are still some big unanswered questions here, since researchers are not convinced that low potassium levels are the most frequent cause of muscle cramps with training.

Bananas provide a variety of vitamins and minerals:

Vitamin B6 – .5 mg.
Manganese – .3 mg.
Vitamin C – 9 mg.
Potassium – 450 mg.
Dietary Fiber – 3g.
Protein – 1 g.
Magnesium – 34 mg.
Folate – 25.0 mcg.

Kiwi Smoothie Recipes

strawberry-kiwiKiwi-Strawberry Smoothie
2 kiwis
1 cup whole strawberries
2 cups fresh baby spinach (or other leafy green)
1/2 cup water

Calories: 148 | Fat: 1.2g (grams) | Protein: 4.8g | Carbs: 36.3g | Calcium: 16% | Vitamin A: 82% | Vitamin C: 415%

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Kiwi-Banana Smoothie
kiwicitrussmoothies2 kiwis
1 banana
2 cups fresh baby spinach (or other leafy green)
¼ avocado
1/2 cup water

Calories: 303 | Fat: 8.2g (grams) | Protein: 6.3g | Carbs: 60.5g | Calcium: 15% | Vitamin A: 85% | Vitamin C: 302%

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apple_spinach_mango_kiwi_smoothieKiwi-Apple Smoothie
2 kiwis
1 apple
2 cups fresh baby spinach (or other leafy green)
1 whole carrot
1/2 cup water

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Kiwis are a rich source of vitamin C. They are also a good source of vitamins A (as beta-carotene), B6, E and K as well as folate, magnesium, phosphorus, copper and dietary fiber. The edible seeds contain omega-3 fatty acids.

Antioxidants are especially present in the skin, which you can leave on the fruit as long as it is organic. Kiwifruit contains actinidin, which is an enzyme that breaks down protein.

Studies suggest that consuming 2-3 kiwifruit each day for 4 weeks helps thin and reduce fat in the blood which lowers the risk of clots and blockages.

Resource: http://www.incrediblesmoothies.com/

 

Oat Bran Smoothie

506b184adbd0cb3081001836._w.1500_s.fit_Ingredients

1 cup ice cube
1 cup skim milk
1 banana, sliced (or 1 cup any fruit fresh or frozen)
1/3 cup oat bran, uncooked
2 teaspoons sugar
dash of cinnamon

 

Directions
Place all ingredients in a blender. Blend. Should be smooth and thick. Sprinkle with cinnamon.

Strawberry-Banana Smoothie

McDonalds-Stawberry-Banana-Smoothie1Ingredients

4 large strawberries, fresh or frozen
1/2 c. milk
1 ripe banana
5 ice cubes
1 1/2 tsp. sugar (opt.)

Directions

Combine strawberries, milk, banana and ice. Blend until perfectly smooth. Add sugar. Blend for 1 minute.

Makes approximately 32 oz.

Servings: 4

Yield: 32 oz

Nutrition (per 8 oz. serving): 53 calories, less than 1g total fat, 2.4mg cholesterol, 13.1mg sodium, 179mg potassium, 11.1g carbohydrates, 1.1g fiber, 7.6g sugar, 1.5g protein, less than 1g saturated fat, less than 1mg iron, 11.8mcg folate, 39.5mg phosphorus, 78.7IU Vitamin A, less than 1mcg Vitamin B12, 13.2mg Vitamin C, 13.1IU Vitamin D.

Pure Banana Smoothie

peanut-butter-banana-smoothie-R117006-ssIngredients

1 banana
1 tablespoon honey, or sugar
1 cup milk
Ice (optional)

Directions

Add all ingredients to blender and blend till smooth

Chocolate Strawberry Smoothie

68-Chocolate-Strawberry-Banana-Smoothie-Shake-018-1280x852Ingredients
Original recipe makes 2 servings

2 bananas, frozen and chunked
1/2 cup frozen strawberries
2 tablespoons chocolate syrup
1 cup plain yogurt

Directions
In a blender combine bananas, strawberries, chocolate syrup and yogurt. Blend until smooth.

Banana Oatmeal Smoothie

ed104169_1108_smoothie_vertIngredients
· 1/4 cup old-fashioned rolled oats
· 1/2 cup plain low-fat yogurt
· 1 banana, cut into thirds
· 1/2 cup milk  (optional skimmed, 1%, 2%, or whole)
· 2 teaspoons honey
· 1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
Directions

In a blender, combine oats, yogurt, banana, fat-free milk, honey, and cinnamon; puree until smooth. Serve immediately.