I mentioned in a recent post how I have been eating so many smoothies lately. So I thought I would finally take the time to share my smoothie recipe. If you are looking for a cool treat for these hot days here in the U.S., then this smoothie will hit the spot.
I am eating about 3 of these per day. They are so delicious! I mostly make them with blueberries, strawberries, and bananas–but you can experiment with other fruits. Okay, here is the recipe.
Gluten Free/Dairy Free Fruit Smoothie-Banana, Strawberry, & Blueberry Ingredients & Recipe
- 1 (VERY RIPE) banana (LARGE or 2 small)–make sure it is unfrozen
- About 1/2—1 cup of frozen strawberries
- About 1/4—1/2 cup of frozen blueberries
- About 1/2-3/4 cup of water (optional: add milk, rice milk, fruit juice, yogurt, or other liquid for different taste)
- Makes 1 large glass full. Just multiply the above for additional servings
Instructions: Add them in a blender, and blend. Place the banana in the blender first, as it makes it easier on your blender. I like to use the “chop” feature at first, because it is hard for the blender to break up the frozen strawberries. Once it starts chopping it up, I put it on the high speed (liquefy). I let it blend for about a minute or so (if you want chunks, you don’t have to blend as long).
Also, you can mix this up and try different fruits and variations. For example, you can create watermelon smoothies, add plums to the above, add blackberries, etc. It isn’t an exact science, so have fun. This is a great way to get your fruit servings while enjoying a healthy snack.
Also, as long as you use a VERY ripe banana (with the skin turning quite a bit brown), then this will taste very sweet and you don’t need to add sugar. But if you want it even sweeter (especially if you use a yellow or green banana), then you may want to add a sweetener such as sugar, honey, or agave nectar. Probably about 1 tsp would be more than enough.
If you find your bananas are getting too ripe–no problem. Just peel them and throw them into a freezer safe bag or freezer safe glass container, and you are good to go. Then just thaw them before making your smoothie (or keep them frozen to make a sorbet).
I buy a huge bag of frozen strawberries and blueberries each week. I also buy several bunches of bananas. I always get a strange look from the cashier when checking out. If you have never bought frozen fruit, then try it. It is easy, sometimes much cheaper, and you don’t have to worry about them going bad. You can also freeze your own fresh fruit if you want in a freezer safe bag or Tupperware to prolong its life and will help you save money on your grocery bill.
This is really good, and if you have never tried it, try it.
Gluten Free, Dairy Free Sorbet (Blueberry, Strawberry, and Banana)
If you want this to be more of an ice cream consistency (or sorbet), then use a frozen banana, and ice cubes. Make sure your blender is tough enough to handle it. But when you add all frozen ingredients, it makes it just like slightly melted ice cream (which is how I love to eat mine). This is so tasty! You will have to eat it with a spoon because it is just like melted ice cream. Again, you can add a bit of fruit juice, or some white sugar, honey, or sweetener if you want it even sweeter. But like I said before, if you use a really ripe banana it is very sweet already.
This is about 180-210 calories (depending on the banana size & amount of fruit you add). It is a great snack and very healthy. It is a great way to not only enjoy a sweet snack (and cool off), but it also counts towards your daily recommended fruit serving for the day. It has no added sugars (unless you add some)–only the natural sugars in the fruit.
Bananas are high in potassium, and blueberries and strawberries are very high in vitamin c, fiber, antioxidants, etc. Obviously if you have any allergies or intolerances to this, you can tweak it to suit you.
Pictures of Dairy Free/Milk Free Fruit Smoothie
Here is a picture of the ingredients (without water added yet), in the blender:
Here is the finished product once it has been blended together. YUM!
Update on My Hives
My hives are still 100% GONE. I go naturally into sweating and I no longer really think about it. I also finally bought me a great weight bench, which I will probably write a review on soon and show everyone what I bought. It is great, and I am very happy with it and I highly recommend it.
I am still exercising several times per week, but I have been changing my routine a bit. Basically I am trying to work every muscle group 2 times per week, and rest about 2 days per week now. I am shooting for higher frequency, and lower volume (which is supposed to be best when you are just getting into it). Later I will increase the volume of exercises for each muscle group as my body adapts and stops growing, and lower the frequency for each group of muscles.
I have slightly reduced my cardio time as well to about 3 times per week, as I am about as slim as I want to be right now and more cardio just requires me to eat more to achieve my maintenance level. I am about 155 right now. I am now looking to slowly build lean muscle, without gaining excessive fat. It is a slow road for sure, but I am concerned with health first, and muscles later. I am also not taking any kind of supplements or anything like that (just my daily multivitamin so I can get calcium).
I am still eating healthy. Basically this is everything I am eating right now each week: cooked brown rice, rice milk, gluten free rice krispies cereal, natural veggie chips, brocolli, tomatoes, chicken, salmon, corn, carrots, and smoothies. That is exactly what I have eaten for a long time now, and it has paid off big time. Some of that is coming from my own garden now, which is saving me money, and it is all natural. Here is a picture of my garden:
We are growing corn, tomatoes (small and large ones), 1 pepper plant, cucumbers, zuccini, squash, and sunflowers. It is just now finally about to produce some tomatoes, and my wife and I are really excited. It is doing very well this year. Last year we have very little rainfall, and so our small garden didn’t do as well. There were a lot of aphids on our tomato plants and my wife was getting really worried they may die. But she found online to chop up some tomatoe leaves, mix with water overnight, and then put in a spray bottle and spray the plants. She did this for several days, and it seems to be working well.
Oh, and here’s a tip. If you eat those smoothies like I eat them, save your banana peels for your garden! We have always heard that banana peels are GREAT for fertilizing roses, but we wondered if they would help our garden. We researched online, and came across a few references where people said they did help. We have been placing them under our tomatoes and around some plants, and they all seem to be doing well. Plus it saves from having to throw them all away in the trash.
What I Have Cut Out of My Diet
I still think that my hives have gotten better for 2 changes: Diet and exercise. Exercise because it helps reduce inflammation, and diet because I now thoroughly believe I suffer from multiple food allergy/intolerances, and this has been a huge factor in my hives and weight gain and stomach issues. While I have gone back and forth wondering if food can be connected to CU in the past, I now believe it is without a doubt connected (at least in my case).
I have been very exact with my diet, and I have uncovered many foods that have been upsetting me. The foods I now have to avoid include due to stomach upset, rashes, or hives:
- Legumes (peanuts, beans, lentils)
- Green beans
- Tree Nuts
- Excessive preservatives/additives
- Red meat
I am going to write a post in the future summarzing how I think food intolerances/allergies may in fact be linked to CU, and I will show some examples of how each of the foods above can affect me. I will also give you some tips and things to watch out for when doing this–so stay tuned.
By the way, if anyone has tried the exercise plan for weeks, and have gotten no relief at all, then my advice is to log your diet daily. If exercising and getting into shape hasn’t helped, I would now be focusing heavily on the food you put in your mouth. You are what you eat!
Get a spreadsheet or notepad, and start logging your meals each day. Perhaps try to cut out some of the foods above. It is very hard at first, but once you get going it gets easier.
Till next time!