I’m not a big eater, so getting in the right nutrients to keep my body going can be difficult at times. Diagnosed with Fibromyalgia and Endometriosis, it’s even more important to make sure I get everything I need.
My power smoothie/protein shake is my go-to five days a week for breakfast/snack throughout the day. The great thing about this shake is that I have about half of it in the morning, and the other half after my afternoon workout.
The ingredients keep the hunger pangs at bay, energy levels balanced, and prevents spiking in my blood sugar levels – especially important if you are diabetic.
Just a side-note, I am not promoting any particular brands to buy, they are just the brands I tend to use.
Put 1 cup of milk in a blender cup.
Milk is a better starting point than just having water. Not only is it a good source of calcium, protein, Vitamin D and Vitamin B12 for maintaining healthy red blood cells and nerve tissue; some experts say that having milk after a workout could help with more body fat being lost, and gaining more muscle mass.
Next, put half to a whole fresh or frozen banana. I use frozen bananas because it makes the shake colder and thicker.
Bananas give a great energy boost, loaded with both soluble and insoluble fibre, helping to keep you fuller for longer. Containing a range of essential nutrients, especially high in potassium; an important nutrient for heart and brain health.
What may be surprising is that bananas are a good source of iron, so those prone to anaemia or experience heavy periods could benefit with having a banana a day.
One large banana is actually 2 serves of fruit, so you only need half a banana or one small banana to reap the benefits.
I then put half a scoop of protein powder in. I only do half the recommended serving as the body cannot digest and adequately absorb more than 30 grams of protein in one meal. So it is more beneficial to have small serves of protein throughout the day.
You don’t have to put protein powder in, you can flavour the shake with cacao powder. Cacao is the purest form of chocolate, believed to contain some of the highest levels of antioxidants and magnesium. Magnesium is vital for absorbing calcium, bone health, diabetes, heart health, muscles recovery and repair, and PMS symptoms.
I usually put in cacao powder and protein powder, as protein powder is great to get all your essential amino acids, it has other added nutrients, and an easily digestible form of protein – perfect for those that are quite active or vegetarians, as a full scoop gives you 24 grams of protein.
Just make sure you get one that is low in sugar, carbohydrates and fats.
Next, I put in 1 teaspoon of pumpkin seeds, 1 brazil nut and 1/4 teaspoon of Turmeric.
Pumpkin seeds are a particularly good source of tryptophan – an amino acid that is converted to serotonin – the ‘feel-good’ chemical in the brain responsible for a whole range of functions. They are a nutritional powerhouse high in magnesium, zinc and healthy fats.
Brazil nut’s most important nutrient is Selenium, only needing 1 brazil nut to get your recommended daily intake of selenium. Selenium helps to reduce inflammation, improves skin, regulates thyroid function and decreases anxiety.
Turmeric gives a mild spice flavour, similar to mix spice. Anti-inflammatory, antioxidant, and considered by some to have such a positive effect on health beyond average nutrition.
Tumeric may be useful with slowing blood clots, and reducing depression by the way it impacts on neurotransmitter function.
Lastly, put in 5 teaspoons of chia seeds, 10 Almonds, and 3 walnuts.
- Chia seeds contains a balance of Omega-3s, 6s and 9, high in magnesium, and 4 grams of protein in just 2 tablespoons of chia seeds.
The ancient Mayan word for strength, Chia delivers a lot of strength with the large quantities of nutrients. Considered to be a whole grain food, loaded with antioxidants and high in fibre. The seeds swell up in the stomach to keep you fuller for longer and blood sugar levels stable, aiding in weight loss.
- Almonds – considered to be the healthiest nut; rich in Vitamin E, potassium, magnesium and calcium. Helping in heart health, maintaining a healthy weight, promoting good bowel health, and helping with stabilising blood sugar levels in diabetics.
Because of their high fibre content, which gives prebiotic properties, aiding in a healthy gastrointestinal system.
- Walnuts – well-known as the ‘brain nut’ or ‘brain food’, it’s high levels of good fats make it a great nut for brain health.
Not only that, check out the shape of 2 halves of the walnut when you press them together, what do they look like..?
I’ve heard their shape is similar to that of a brain…
Another nut that helps in controlling diabetes, has anti-inflammatory properties, improves brain health and is a mood booster.
As you see, this shake packs a huge nutritional punch, the ingredients last for ages, and you get all your nuts and seeds, 1 serving of fruit, and protein. Perfect breakfast or snack. You can prepare the night before so no hassle before work.