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Maca, which is found in the high Andes mountains of central Peru, has been touted as a superfood for its multiple health benefits. It’s been eaten as a medicinal plant for over 3,000 years to boost libido, strength, and stress. Today I’m sharing with you my Maca Morning Motivator Smoothie recipe which takes advantage of one other benefit maca provides – increased energy.
What is Maca?
The maca plant is a cruciferous vegetable known scientifically as Lepidium Meyenii. It contains 133% of the recommended daily dose of vitamin C as well as other nutrients such as vitamin B6, manganese, copper, potassium, and iron.
One ounce (28 grams) of maca root powder contains 4 grams of protein and only 20 grams of carbs and 1 gram of fat. It also contains bioactive plant compounds like polyphenols.
The powder form can provide stable energy without the jitters you get with caffeine. It has a slightly sweet, nutty, and earthy taste, which makes it ideal for smoothies or blended drinks.
Aside from this smoothie recipe, I like to enjoy it in iced coffee and lattes, but it also works well in baked goods, energy bars, and oatmeal.
Where can you get it?
You can find maca powder in your local health food store in the supplements section and through online retailers. If you’re new to maca, consult your doctor to see if it’s right for you, especially if you’re pregnant, breastfeeding, or have thyroid problems. Also, start with a small amount, such as half a teaspoon to see how your body reacts to it.
If you find your blender doesn’t give you that smooth consistency you want, make sure you add the liquid to the blender first. Doing this allows the blender to pull down the ice and other ingredients into a “vortex” for a better, smoother blend.
For easy cleanup, fill your blender with about a cup of water and a few drops of dish detergent. Cover and blend. The action will easily scrub bits off the inside of the carafe. Empty the contents, give it a good rinse, and enjoy the time you saved with this quick cleanup tip.
Personally, I love my BlendTec blender.
If you have nut allergies or dislike the taste of almond milk, you can substitute with coconut milk.
Want to skip the vanilla protein powder but still want some sweetness? Try substituting a banana, two pitted Medjool dates or a teaspoon of vanilla extract.
I highly doubt you’ll have any leftover, but if you want to whip up a big batch in advance, it will keep well in the fridge for a day or two. Store it in the blender carafe so you can easily remix it just before serving.
Alternatively, pour individual servings into mason jars and shake well before drinking. Mason jars also make it super easy to travel with or take to work.
Maca Morning Motivator Smoothie
This maca smoothie is rich and chocolatey but packed with superfoods to give you a boost of energy to kickstart your day.
Prep Time: 1 minute
Cook Time: 1 minute
If you’ve tried one of my recipes, leave a comment and let me know what you think. Shared it on social media? I would love to see it! Tag your post with #RealLifeOutlawBlog, so I can find it.
Be Well & Thrive!
With Love & In Health,
Sarah Outlaw, MH, MSACN
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What’s a quick and easy way to pack a bunch of immune-boosting foods together into a delicious drink? The answer is my Healing Elderberry Smoothie. It’s quick and easy to make and could be the yummiest way you’ll ever have to give your immune system just what it needs to keep you feeling your best.
Benefits of Elderberry
This smoothie contains a number of powerful ingredients to nourish your body and boost your immunity. It has lemon, which is not only jam-packed with vitamin C but is also well known for fighting off infections and preventing and treating the growth of bacteria.
Additionally, this smoothie has honey, which we already know helps soothe a sore throat. But did you know that honey, in its raw form, has also been used for hundreds of years to treat infections and aid in wound healing? Yup, it’s true!
My recipe calls for manuka honey, which has even more antibacterial properties than the typical honey you find at your grocers. This kind of honey can also improve oral health, ensuring your mouth has just as much good bacteria as it does bad. And manuka honey helps our digestive systems – gut health is vital for keeping our immune systems strong.
You may need to visit your local health food store to find manuka honey, but don’t worry if you can’t locate some. Organic raw honey will work just as well in this recipe.
Substitutions and Variations
If you don’t eat or are sensitive to dairy, you could try substituting the Greek yogurt with coconut yogurt or lactose-free yogurt. These are vegetarian, vegan, Whole30, and gluten-free options.
While this recipe calls for honey, you can substitute it for another sweetener like Agave nectar, molasses, maple syrup, or stevia according to your preference. Remember not to overdo it with the added sweetness. A little goes a long way.
If you want to skip the added sugar altogether, use a well ripened-banana and a dash of vanilla extract. The riper the banana, the sweeter it tastes.
For variation, you could use your favorite frozen fruit, such as raspberries or cherries.
If you have any leftover smoothie that you can’t drink right away, you can make popsicles! Just put them into popsicle molds and stick them in the freezer.
Don’t have popsicle molds on hand? No worries! Pour the remaining smoothie into an empty ice cube tray. When they’re ready, you can add a couple of little frozen cubes of goodness to your next smoothie or add a cube or two to warm oatmeal.
For another DIY option, pour the leftovers into small wax-coated paper cups, cover with plastic wrap secured with a rubber band, then insert a popsicle stick and pop it into the freezer. When it’s ready, remove the plastic and cut away the cup. If you have kids, this can be a fun activity to do together.
Now, are you ready to see the recipe? Let’s do this!
Healing Elderberry Smoothie
Drink to better immune health with this delicious smoothie. Your taste buds will be delighted, and your sore throat soothed by just the right mix of fruit and honey in this healing drink recipe.
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 5 minutes
Servings: 4 servings
A Delicious Way to Boost Immunity
This recipe is a delicious way to get a blast of powerful nutrients and immune-boosting benefits all in one. But don’t wait until you start to feel a cold coming on to drink it. Whip up a batch every so often to help keep your immune system functioning at its best.
If you try this recipe out, let me know what you think in the comments (tag me on Instagram @reallifeoutlaw). I’d love to see how yours turned out!
Have you tried any of these before? Do you have further questions about them? Let me know in the comments!
Be Well & Thrive!
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Your body is your vehicle, so it’s important to fuel your engine to keep it running when you work out. Without needed fuel, you risk driving your car on empty. You’ll be weaker and feel more tired, you won’t be as fast in your workout, and even worse, you’ll be tempted to quit before you’re done. Gasp!
And if a strenuous workout is on your horizon, particularly one with heavy strength training or high-intensity movements, you don’t want to work out on an empty tank. Doing so can defeat the purpose of your workout since it puts your body at risk of breaking down your lean muscle cells for fuel.
Not to mention, if you don’t fuel up, you may feel lightheaded, dizzy, or nauseated which can increase your risk of injury.
What do you need?
The American College of Sports Medicine recommends: “Adequate food and fluid should be consumed before, during, and after exercise to help maximize exercise performance, and improve recovery time.”
Does that mean you should down a chalky protein shake before your workout? Not necessarily. The satisfying, antioxidant-rich spiced pear smoothie I’ll share with you can help you power up for your workout.
The portability of a smoothie makes it ideal if you’re on the go as it’s easy enough to keep cold in an insulated tumbler. Plus, smoothies can give you a boost of energy without making you feel overly full.
Benefits of Pears
Carbs equal energy and pears provide the easily digestible kind that quickly converts to fuel for your body. This is just what you need to help you power through a strenuous workout.
Also, studies show the vitamin C and fiber found in pears can help boost the immune system. Good news because immunity levels can dip after a workout.
In addition to carbs, it’s a good idea to consume some protein before your workout to support muscle repair, especially if you are doing weight training. The almond milk in this recipe provides just enough protein without slowing down your digestion.
When should you eat it?
A common recommendation is to eat 30 minutes to an hour before exercise to give your body enough time to digest the food. I personally like to eat protein and healthy fats to fuel me for a workout and protein good muscle recovery.
Play with the sweetness to find what makes you happy. The recipe calls for maple syrup, but you can substitute with raw honey or 1-2 teaspoons of stevia to taste. If you add protein powder, you will not need any extra sweetener.
I recommend you make it fresh, but if you want to save time, prep all the ingredients the night before, add them to your blender container, then blend the next day.
Spiced Pear Smoothie
Prep Time: 5 minutes