Remember that every single green drink you create is an investment in your quality of life — now and always

Kris Carr

My Top 5 Green Juices and Smoothies

First of all, let's look at the eternal dilemma: to juice or not to juice?

 

I've been asked what is healthier: juices or smoothies? My short answer is BOTH!

 

Let's take a closer look.

 

But before we dive there, let's just get one thing straight: I'm writing about green juices and smoothies, not pure fruit juices or smoothies. You can treat fruit ones as a healthier version of a desert, while the green juices and smoothies or vegetable based ones actually boost your nutritional intake without overloading your system with sugars.

 

Juices

 

Juice is pretty much a smoothie with the fiber removed. This means that fresh green juices give us an opportunity to load up on nutrients at a much higher density (than smoothies).

If you are interested in adding more vegetables into your diet (and that would be a very clever idea..), it's easier to do so with juices than smoothies. And if you don't like vegetables in their normal form, in a juice they taste more palatable with a bit of lemon and some fruit.

Finally, because juices are so concentrated, a small amount can provide the equivalent of nutrition you would typically get from several servings of fruits and veggies. This means that it is much easier to take in all the important vitamins and minerals your body needs first thing in the morning.

For juices you'll need a lot more produce, so they are more expensive to make. But the plus is that you can get the nutrients of a whole bunch of spinach or kale in one serving which would be harder to consume in one serving of a smoothie.

So to sum it up: green juices are powerful high-nutrient health elixirs: energising, healing and detoxing.

 

Smoothies

 

Smoothies are essentially juices with fibre. And yes, fibre IS important. Fibre makes smoothies more satisfying and is important for colon health.
Fiber plays a vital role in health. That’s precisely why I opt to have both green juices and green smoothies in my life. While I see green juice as a powerful nutrient-dense elixir that is healing, energizing and massively health promoting, I see green smoothies as satiating, grounding, and colon-cleansing (from the fiber).
Another plus is that green smoothies are normally cheaper to make as they require less produce. And they take less time to prepare (and less cleaning, just rinse the blender).
A tip: you can blend in plenty of superfood ingredients/nutrition boosters into your smoothie. Think herbs, ginger, matcha, super greens, turmeric, hemp seeds, natural protein powders, cacao, Ayurvedic spices, oils etc.
So to sum it up: green smoothies will fill you up, offer a nutrition boost and keep things moving through your digestive tract as they are high in fibre.

 

 

 

Finally, my TOP 5 Juice Recipes

 

  1. Spinach + cucumber + apple + lemon
  2. Kale + pineapple + mint
  3. Swiss chard or wheatgrass + cucumber + celery + basil + lemon (and maybe 1/2 apple)
  4. Rucola + orange + lemon
  5. Baby greens + pomegranate + lemon

 

As you can see, there is lemon in all the recipes. A bit of lemon helps to make juices more tasty, and C-vitamin in it helps to make nutrients in leafy greens absorbable for your body.

And an important tip: both in juice and smoothie recipes, make sure greens or veggies take up at least 1/3 of the recipe.

 

What juicer or smoothie blender to use?

 

Another common question! There are so many great machines out there these days, so I invite you to explore.

What I will recommend though is a slow juicer (I use Oscar for example) as it will use a lot less produce to make the same amount of juice as a conventional juicer and it's excellent for juicing greens and berries. A regular juicer would have a problem with the greens AND waste lots of fruit and veggies.

If you are a nutrition nerd, there is another reason you'd want a slow juicer. Because it breaks downs the plant fibres differently from a regular juicer (using ceramic parts instead of metal disc meaning using pressing force instead of heat and friction), it preserves the enzymes in the fruit and greens a lot better.

 

For smoothies, I would recommend a high speed blender (I use a Vitamix) as it's going to make the smoothie or smoothie bowl texture amazingly silky, even if you blend in things like cacao nibs which would be "unblendable" for a regular blender. And because of how efficiently a high performance blender does its job, the smoothies typically end up tasting better too.

 

 

 

Aaaand, my TOP 5 smoothie recipes

 

  1. Baby spinach + banana + wild blueberries + lemon + a bit of water or coconut water
  2. Kale + 1/2 avocado + fresh orange juice + mint + lemon
  3. Baby greens + mango + passionfruit + lemon + a bit of  water/orange juice/coconut water
  4. Rucola + papaya + 2 ladyfinger bananas + lemon
  5. Lettuce leaves of your choice + kiwi + frozen berries + lemon

You can make the smoothies quite thick if you like - this is what is usually called a "smoothie bowl". Or you go for drinking consistency. Depending on what you prefer, add more or less water, coconut water or fresh juice into the mix.

Enjoy!

 

 

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