Day 24 Tips and Tricks for Sofa Heroes: Juicing & Shaking

The Nutrition/Functional Medicine Department of The Optimum Health Clinic helped me learn so much about a healthy diet, taught me all about protein shakes and juicing to boost my veggie intake!  Click on the photo to donate to The OHC through my JustGiving Campaign so more people have access to integrative treatment.
Hi Everyone!
Every integrated approach to healing the body - whether it's assistance for healing during MS or Cancer, or ME/CFS, every lifestyle approach includes adding more fresh plant food to your diet - particularly veggies - some say they manage their severe neurological relapses in MS by getting 20 servings of veggies a day!  The OHC recommends aiming for 8 servings of veggies a day, and a few of fruit - depending on your sugar tolerance.  It's easier to focus on fruit because of its sweetness, but really it's better to focus on veggies and add just a little fruit for flavor as blood sugar levels can vary a lot with our energy dysfunctions.

Trying to get that many veggies a day by eating raw salads can be REALLY difficult - so Juicing and Shakes can be an awesome way of getting your veggie count up fast.  How to know whether to juice or shake?

Shakes will use a liquid base, and you add protein powder to boost your protein intake (See my post on Protein) - A shake can also work as a great breakfast, quick/light meal, or afternoon snack.

My usual is spinach with a few frozen blueberries and a couple slices frozen banana.

bases can be any kind of alternative milk (dairy is usually a problem for people with already compromised immune systems) coconut milk, almond drink, oat drink, coconut water, kombucha or even herbal teas (cold, protein powders usually break down in hot drinks).  Avoid any of these bases with added sugars - always choose the no sugar added option.

Then you can add your greens - kale, spinach rocket, cucumber, avocado - softer greens will work in a shake with a handblender.

For protein - add nuts, seeds, yogurt and/or your protein powder or even nut butters too.

Last you can add a flavor or fruit for a little sweetness - shaking fruit rather than juicing is preferable as you will still get the fibre content from the fruit flesh and skin.  Use soft fruits like frozen berries, ripe pears or peaches to blend easily. Frozen fruits add extra -shakey- factor. Add cinnamon, ginger, coriander or mint for bonus immune boosting effects. Bananas don't juice very well but work well in shakes - stick to low amounts though, adding half a banana should be plenty to add taste without boosting blood sugar levels. Cinnamon is a great balancer for blood sugar levels too.

The benefits of shakes are adding fibre and protein that you can lose out in juicing - and buying a hand blender can usually range between £20-£50, versus the +- £200 cost of buying a juicer.

Juicing, however - gets you tons of veggie power in one glass. Juice the veggies that don't blend well - that have heartier fibre or tough skins.  Again - do limit your fruit, but you can use harder fruit like apples and cucumber offers better through juicing.

Celery, cucumber, lemon, ginger, turmeric (anti-inflammatory root), carrots, beets (watch the blood sugar indicators on sweeter veggies) - Lemon and ginger are strong flavors that can usually mask the veggies you have a harder time getting through chewing or blending.  I like to throw in all the kale I have left over! So if you can't bear the taste or chewiness of kale, rocket or leafy greens might be better to juice them with celery, lemon and ginger.  This will also be a great alkalising boost before a meal or first thing in the morning. Plus you can keep extra juice in jars and enjoy for 1-2 days.
If anyone has tips on keeping turmeric stains off everything let me know :D

You can find protein shake and juicing recipes on my healthy food pinterest board :)
Share your favorite shakes or juices in the comments! Also let us know if you have a blender or juicer that you absolutely love! I'll be upgrading soon :D

If you found this post helpful, please consider donating to my JustGiving Page - 30 Days of Tips and Tricks for Sofa Heroes - for The OHC research on Integrative Medicine for helping more people with ME/CFS and Fibromyalgia.

See Day 1 for a full table of contents


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