Immune-boosting Smoothie Add-ons
It’s no secret that the team at So Good So You are huge advocates for smoothies. Whether it’s to jumpstart your morning or an afternoon pick-me-up, smoothies are a great way to get your fruit and veggie fix in just one drink. Looking to amp up your smoothie even further? You’re in luck. We tapped Dr. Terry Shirvani, a Naturopathic Physician, to offer his insights on which ingredients to include in your next smoothie.
Dr. Terry specializes in natural and preventative medicine, including Naturopathic modalities like Clinical Nutrition, Ayurveda, and Classical Chinese Medicine, and supports SGSY as a product developer and scientific and technical advisor. Here’s Dr. Terry’s list of five ingredients to experiment adding to boost the benefits of your next smoothie:
1) Ginger root (fresh/raw or dry powder) – contains potent active ingredients such as gingerols and shogaols; scientifically shown to have powerful anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties; excellent for support of GI and immune health.
At So Good So You, we’re major advocates for working with fresh, raw ginger root. We use organic ginger root in our Ginger Immunity shot, an ingredient we’ve worked hard to source for the best flavor and nutrients (believe it or not, not all ginger is created equal and we’ve tried them all!). When we’re incorporating fresh ginger in our smoothies, we like to add a few slices (to taste) of root prior to blending. Yum!
2) Chlorella – considered a superfood, chlorella is rich in nutrients and phytonutrients such as chlorophyll, carotenoids, B vitamins, protein, minerals, and nucleic acids. It also contains a unique substance called Chlorella Growth Factor which may help to support immune health, cardiovascular health, and overall detoxification.
Looking to purchase chlorella yourself? Visit your local natural grocer, such as Whole Foods!
3) Mushroom powder blend (maitake, reishi, shiitake, and/or lion’s mane) – contains polysaccharides, such as beta-glucan, and other phytonutrients that modulate and strengthen the immune system and support cognitive, nervous system, and cardiovascular health. Add a teaspoon (about 3 grams) or so to a smoothie mix. Can be consumed daily.
When working mushroom powder blends into our smoothies, we like to add a teaspoon (about 3 grams) or so to smoothie mix. It is also safe to be consumed daily.
4) Pomegranate juice – contains vitamin C, B vitamins, and phytonutrients such as punicalagins and ellagic acid that provide potent antioxidant activity and support cardiovascular, metabolic, and immune health.
When adding pomegranate juice to your smoothies, we recommend playing around with various amounts to find the flavor you’re looking for.
5) Flax seeds (ground) – provide fiber as well as omega-3 fatty acids that are important for many aspects of overall health; flax seeds also contain lignans, a type of polyphenol that research suggests may support immune health. Take 1 tablespoon (about 10 grams) ground flax seeds daily.
When shopping for flax seeds, buy organic whole flax seeds (emphasis on whole). Wait to grind them until time of consumption, as they oxidize (go rancid) relatively quickly. Alternatively, store ground flax seeds in the freezer. We like to add a tablespoon (about 10 grams) ground flax seeds to our daily smoothies!
We are huge smoothie fans at So Good So You as they remind us of milkshakes but are a million times better for you, especially when they’re made with nutrient-dense ingredients like the ones Dr. Terry mentions above. More often than not, we start our day with a smoothie or a shot (or both!), giving us the fuel we need to jumpstart our day. If you’re looking for your probiotic fix either in your smoothie or on it’s own, try one of our probiotic shots. To find a store near you, visit our store finder here.
Keep an eye out for more insights and information from Dr. Terry, and be sure to check out his Myths Debunked series where he discusses common theories to be wary of such as his take on natural versus man-made nutrients. His response may surprise you!
So Good So You and its blog materials are not intended to treat, diagnose, cure or prevent any disease. All material on The So Good So You blog is provided for educational purposes only. Always seek the advice of your physician or another qualified healthcare provider for any questions you have regarding a medical condition, and before undertaking any diet, exercise or other health-related programs.