Most of us have very busy lives and we are doing our best to take care of our physical health in the midst of all the busyness. One of the biggest downfalls of a healthy life is eating poorly and particularly when on the go. It’s tough for me to get a full meal between clients, they don’t like to sit down and watch me scarf a meal that will take 20 minutes to eat. To make up for this I have my green shake. Many clients have seen this shake, few have seen it and not been a little bit scared of it asking “what is in that?”
So here goes:
1 scoop of protein powder (I prefer chocolate)
2 tbsp ground flax seeds (or 1 tbsp chia seeds)
2 tbsp PB2 (dried peanut butter- optional, adds flavor)
1 tsp green energy food (alfalfa, kelp, barley, dried into fine powder-amazingly healthy, not amazingly tasty)
2 big handfuls of spinach and/or kale
8 oz water
1 cup ice or more depending on desired consistency
This recipe can be tweaked here and there, but this is the most common way I make it. I always pack my shake the night before in a shaker cup with all the dry ingredients on the bottom, then add the spinach to the top. Then the next day at work I just dump it in the blender and add the ice, lastly the water. The ice is a very important part of the shake. Without it you will get random chunks of unblended spinach or kale and probably gag like I do when we don’t have enough ice. I’ve learned my lesson. But with ice, you make an amazing, tasty, nutrition packed meal replacement. Make sure to blend it until you don’t see any green chunks and the ice stops grinding. I’m blessed to work at a place that has a blender, but the magic bullets or similar products would work just as well. I recommend taking one to work with you. Don’t mix your shake ahead of time then let it sit for hours, it will separate and not taste as good as mixing it fresh.
This shake is well balanced with the core being protein, then your healthy fat of either flax seed or chia seeds, and your healthy carbs with the huge servings of spinach or kale. I don’t always have the time to sit and eat salad and it’s tough for me to get enough vegetables throughout my day. This shake really makes getting a ton of nutrients from veges quick and easy.
Picking a protein powder: I’m not going to go into this completely because it’s a subject that needs it’s own 2-3 pages of info. I will tell you that I read the ingredients on any protein powder that I am going to get. I look for a short ingredient list and I watch for any artificial sweeteners. Some people don’t mind them, but they effect my body and will give me headaches if I use them too much. Stevia is the sweetener that I want it to have. I look for one that has at least 20 grams of protein per serving and less than 5 grams of sugar, preferable less. Also I get a whey protein and never a soy protein or a protein that has any mention of soy anywhere in the ingredients.
The green energy food is not a must, but I really like the one I get. I get it from my chiropractor in Nampa. It is locally made from organic ingredients. I feel my energy increase like crazy with this stuff and it’s really good at minimizing the effects of eating poorly… not that I would ever do that, but saying someone might eat too much sugar and then taking a tsp of this in water helps reduce that sick feeling you might get. Here are some images if you want more info on this product. Garden of Life and a few other companies put out good “greens” also. Get those in the organic supplement section at Fred Meyer or Whole Foods.
Give the green shake a try and see how it makes you feel. Don’t be afraid to experiment a little bit. Sometimes I’ll add little things here and there like 1/4 c. dry oatmeal, or 1/2 c. berries. You could also use almond milk or coconut milk instead of water to add some flavor. But be aware that everything that adds flavor potentially adds a lot of calories. The above recipe is just under 300 calories and everything in it is full of great health benefits! Remember everything we put in our body is fuel and effects the results we get and our long term health, let’s feed our bodies with quality stuff on a regular basis.