Restorative Golden Milk Smoothie
Updated: Jan 9
This week’s theme: Cleanse and Renew!
As a Dietitian, people always ask me questions about quick fixes and diet trends for optimal health. My response – there is no one-size-fits-all approach, and everyone needs different levels of nutrition and movement based on their circumstances. If anything, I look for ways to reduce inflammation in the body as a first line of defense – think limiting dairy, processed foods, and lowering stress levels. That being said, optimal health is more than just nutrition; it encompasses sleep, mental health, stress, physical wellbeing, and more. The new year is a great time to take inventory of all these facets of wellness and see what you might need to focus on to create more balance. This week’s theme, cleanse and renew, will give you some quick tips for restoring balance within yourself and regaining the energy and focus needed to conquer your day.
The concept of cleanse and renew is not a diet detox, and I won’t be sharing a green juice recipe with you today. There isn’t even anything green in the recipe! That is because your body is already capable of doing much of the cleansing it needs without severe calorie or nutrient restriction. Furthermore, there are plenty of gut-friendly foods to help improve digestion and increase energy without expensive powders or tinctures. The secret is simple; listen to your body and really pay attention to how it responds to certain foods. Food journaling comes in handy here to document if you feel more awake/tired, bloated/satisfied, hungry/full, and any other symptoms that might point to foods that make you feel your best or worst.
In addition to listening to your body, there are some key foods to consider incorporating as you refresh your palate and plate. Incorporating more anti-inflammatory foods and spices will help reduce inflammation in the body and optimize your health. Inflammation can manifest itself in many ways, but some common symptoms include joint pain, gastrointestinal discomfort, headaches, weight gain, acne, and irritability. By incorporating more fruits, vegetables, olive oil, fatty fish, turmeric, nuts/seeds, and plant proteins you can help reduce inflammation in your body and feel a renewed sense of energy.
Improving your gut microbiome is another great way to look and feel your best by getting rid of bloating and GI distress. Our gut microbiome gets out of whack after as little as 2-3 days of poor eating – think all those extra cookies and glasses of wine around the holidays. This is why we tend to feel the need to do some type of diet overhaul in January. We are feeling completely bloated and tired after weeks of indulgence. Improving the gut microbiome requires adding back in some prebiotics and probiotics to your meal plan to help restore your good gut bacteria. Think fibrous foods. Prebiotics are food for our gut bacteria and include things like bananas, whole grains, onions, and greens. Probiotics on the other hand, refer to beneficial bacteria itself that can help restore our microbiome when consumed. Think kimchi, sauerkraut, kombucha, and yogurt with live strains in it. By incorporating these types of foods, you will restore your internal ecosystem. Once your gut microbiome becomes balanced again, you will feel more energy, improved mood, and better overall digestion.
Lifestyle modifications are the best way to make lasting changes to improving health and wellbeing. By giving your meal plan a cleanse and washing away all the added processed foods, fatty red meats, refined sugars, and processed dairy, you will help to improve your mood, physical health, and reduce bloating to help you feel your best self. This recipe includes a range of healing ingredients: turmeric for reducing inflammation, pepper to help increase absorption of turmeric, bananas/dates are fiber rich, cinnamon helps reduce blood sugar levels, and ginger is great for boosting immunity.
This recipe makes one serving and is great for an afternoon snack or can be enjoyed with breakfast.
Restorative Golden Milk Smoothie
Makes 8 oz: 1 serving
1/2 frozen banana
1/2 c. coconut milk
1 pitted date
1 tsp honey
1/4 tsp turmeric
1/8 tsp cinnamon
1/8 tsp ginger
Pinch of fresh ground black pepper
2 ice cubes
Blend all ingredients in a high-speed blender until smooth. Enjoy immediately!
Be sure to check out Harp and Wellness tomorrow on YouTube. Nicole will walk us through mindfulness exercises every Saturday at 3 pm ET to complement our weekly themes all throughout January.
To access Harp and Wellness on social media:
Wishing you all a healthy and peaceful New Year!