Let’s talk for a second about your health. One of the most critical aspects in moving your health forward is to continually align it with a realistic and simple life approach. I’ve spoken in length on the value of wholesome foods as a priority when endeavouring to improve your overall health (read more here and here). So given the large impact diet has within the scope of better health, why not use food as a vehicle to deliver potent and therapeutic medicine? Noting the wonderful tastes and conveniences of smoothie bowls, let’s talk about how you can incorporate such a simple tool in order to continually propel your health forward.
What is a smoothie bowl?
Essentially, a smoothie bowl is a shake or smoothie that is prepared to a thick enough consistency that you can eat it out of a bowl with a spoon. Given the use of a blender to mix up and blend all ingredients together, a smoothie bowl is a simple yet effective way to add a plethora of healthy medicinal foods or natural medicines into one, by creating an extremely tasty and satisfying all in one meal.
How can you use smoothie bowls as a health promoting medicine?
Because most smoothie bowls are made from a base of berries and moderation of other fruit, being agreeable to consume such a tasty meal daily doesn’t take much twisting or convincing. Given the density of nutritious ingredients in most smoothie bowls to begin with, it is a powerful health promoting addition to your lifestyle on its own. The golden ticket when it comes to smoothie bowls however, is that as a blender prepared meal, the smooth consistency and flavours are unparalleled. Given the endless opportunity to pulverize whole foods into liquid form, smoothie bowls eloquently serve as a perfect vehicle to hide other healthy foods or medicines that otherwise would rarely be consumed. Take for example a vegetable such as collard greens (have you ever heard of this powerful superfood?!). This particular leafy green veggie is typically difficult to cook, prepare and eat in any sizeable manner, so would normally go unconsumed for most. But add it to your blender amidst the flavourful fruits and other ingredients in your smoothie bowl base, and you’d be hard pressed to even realize that it is even there. Similarly, think about natural medicines such as herbs, vitamins or minerals; sometimes people just can’t hack the taste, or have a difficult time trying to figure out how and where to add them to their daily routine. Incorporate them into your smoothie bowl, and once again, I bet you’d never know (or even taste) that they’ve been added. I often have patients open capsules of vitamins or nutrients to add them straight into their smoothie bowl prep. In this way, the medicine gets in and helps patients both avoid having to swallow too many pills and makes them simple to consume.
How do I make a smoothie bowl?
Given the flexibility of smoothie bowls, recipe approaches are endless. That being said, here is a sample of where to start:
Liquid: 1/2 to 1 cup water and plant based milk (coconut, almond, oat) mix in a 1:1 ratio (add more or less liquid as needed to ensure the consistency is thick).
Fruit: an abundance of frozen berries (such as blueberry, blackberry, cherry or strawberry), fruits (mango, banana etc.), and avocado, in order to thicken your smoothie bowl up.
Vegetables: green leafy vegetables are key, such as spinach, kale, sprouts, arugula, or spring mix just to name a few.
Fat: Nut butters, such as peanut, almond or cashew, raw oils such as olive or fish (oil). In addition to avocado above (as an option), fats possess many healthy attributes and help balance blood sugars.
Protein: Vegan or whey protein powder.
Other worthy ingredients to add: fresh ginger, turmeric powder, greens powder, mushroom powder, cinnamon, dried herbs and spices of your choice.
Toppings once the smoothie has been blended and prepared: seeds (sunflower, pumpkin, chia), nuts (walnut, almond), hemp hearts, coconut, granola, and fresh berries just to name a few!
Natural medicines, herbs, vitamins: speak to your naturopathic or integrative medical professional.
The health benefits and options for your smoothie bowls are endless. So if you just can’t figure out where to begin, or are unsure about your next steps toward a healthy lifestyle defined by simplicity, take time and let’s connect, and you’ll quickly realize how a simple approach can be exactly just that.
Dr Jeremy Hayman, ND helps patients at Cornerstone Naturopathic Inc. feel better, live better, and achieve optimal wellness and health. Years of patient care coupled with dedication to personal life balance has helped Dr Jeremy employ the adage that “your approach to health should be simple”.