By Mark van Tol
(NC) – Smoothies and summer go hand in hand and are a refreshing relief from the long, hot days that mark the season. Making a smoothie is simple, and they are a great way to improve your diet by ensuring you get your daily intake of fruit.
To get started, the first thing you need is a blender. With so many models to choose from an important feature to look for is a number of watts a blender has. The more watts, the stronger the motor and easier it is to blend thicker substances or crush ice, which is great for smoothies.
A common complaint among blender users is that thicker blends tend to stick to the sides of the jar. ‘When we designed the Cyclone Blender we focused on this issue,’ said Barry Squire, Product Manager at Black & Decker Home Products. ‘The jar’s unique shape draws food into the blades, creating a vortex that prevents thicker beverages from sticking to the sides, saving you time and effort.’
Now that you have a blender… get fruit and lots of it! The reason smoothies are so popular isn’t just because of their great taste, they are also very healthy (high in fibre and vitamins). Here are a few recipes that will get you started. Feel free to experiment with fruit pairings and discover your own blender-sensations.
The Breakfast Smoothie:
Trying to eat a good breakfast and get out the door in the morning is tough, so finding a delicious smoothie combination can help. Start with a healthy cereal, perhaps low-fat granola or muesli, mix in yogurt, bananas, blueberries or whatever fruit you like, add some juice, blend and start the day with energy.
- 1/2 cup cereal (low-fat granola, muesli, etc.)
- 1/2 cup vanilla yogurt (low-fat)
- 1 cup ice
- 1 banana
- 2 cups juice (orange, apple or whatever you like)
The 5pm Stress Reliever:
After a long day at work, this smoothie will relax and recharge you. Strawberries are a great source of vitamins and nutritional value, which stress at work can deprive us of. Drinking fruit smoothies containing strawberries helps replenish these vitamins, keeping us healthy.
- 2 1/2 cups strawberries
- 1/2 cup strawberry nectar
- 1 pitted peach
- 1 cup low-fat plain yogurt (or strawberry yogurt if you don’t have the nectar)
- 2 cups ice
These recipes can be found online at smoothieweb.com