I have a bit of a confession to make. I have not been engaging in self care or nourishing my body appropriately for the past two months. Ever since starting my private practice, my entire life has shifted dramatically, in the best way. However, I have gotten very derailed in my routine and making meals for myself. When you are in recovery from an eating disorder, this is a huge no-no. Meal prep is so important, though I've always found it boring.
Anyway, I've recently gotten back into making green smoothies. For me just drinking a smoothie isn't very satisfying, I prefer to put it in a bowl and actually eat it with a spoon, even if its not as thick as I would like. For me, getting a big dose of greens in the morning, makes a huge difference for the rest of my day. Firstly, I find it difficult to eat breakfast, but I also know that its important for me to eat breakfast. Once I start skipping meals during the day, my entire food schedule tends to get messed up. Smoothies are an easy and healthy way to eat breakfast, without just deferring to eating a bowl of cereal. Cereal typically doesn't go over well for me as I don't get satisfied from it, though I have a huge weakness for cereal.
The other reason I love green smoothies in the morning is because I find if I get a good amount of greens in early, I am so much more satisfied in what I am eating the rest of the day. When you feed your body enough nutrients, you are so much less likely to crave junk. Most often our "cravings" for certain foods are actually our bodies saying it needs more nutrients, since most processed foods have lots of calories and zero nutrients. This the opposite of whole foods (fruits, vegetables, meats etc), which are lower calories but nutrient dense. Therefore, if I start off my day with a hearty green smoothie, I tend to crave more nutrient dense foods for the rest of the day and feel more satiated with my food choices in general.
Though I believe people in recovery from eating disorders can get too obsessed with nutrition and that can become an eating disorder in itself (also known as Orthorexia), for me its important to find a balance. I cannot just eat processed food and maintain good eating habits and feel good in my recovery, but sometimes food does need to be about fuel and having a meal. I also believe that everyone is unique and you need to find what works for you. This is just what works for me. I used to think that eating disorder recovery was a huge drag and burden I had to carry. But when I switched to thinking of it as an experiment and a game, life got a lot more fun and interesting.
Here's my recipe and tips for the perfect green smoothie:
- 2+ handfuls / cups of greens (I prefer spinach because its easy to blend and has less taste, though kale, mixed greens, chard etc. work well too)
- 1-2 cups of frozen fruit (I like to use 1 frozen banana always, because it makes the texture more like ice cream and tends to be thicker)
- 1/2 cup of almond milk
- Toppings: I like to have a solid mix of fresh fruit, dried fruit and something crunchy (nuts/seeds) and/or granola (my favorite!)
- OPTIONAL: 1 scoop of protein powder
1. Blend milk and greens in blender first. This is. important because trying to blend a frozen banana without any liquid is hard!
2. Blend half of the fruit in with mixture and then the other half
3. Add protein powder if desired, thicken with extra fruit or greens if needed
4. Pour smoothie into a bowl
5. Add toppings! For me the difference in texture is key. I always add in granola for crunch, add in fresh fruit (berries are great for this), seeds/nuts (I like chia seeds or walnuts), and dried fruit for the chewy texture (goji berries are my favorite, though any dried fruit or raisins will work!)
with grace and greens,