Are you suffering from joint pain?
Smoothies can be a convenient and tasty way to “up the ante” nutrition-wise in your diet, and may provide nutrients to support the health of your bones and joints.
This month I was quoted in Arthritis Today on the benefits of nutritious smoothies. Many are familiar with arthritis pain, brought on by the inflammation, stiffness and reduced circulation that comes along with it. A diet rich in foods that contain healthy fats, like omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids, calcium, and vitamins E and D may help decrease inflammation and alleviate pain in bones, joints and tissue throughout the body.
If you find it difficult to eat a couple servings of fruit a day, making a smoothie can be an easy way to accomplish this! Smoothies made from fresh or frozen fruit (and veggies!) and protein sources like seeds, nuts, nutbutters, and soy, offer vibrant phytochemicals that may help stave off inflammation and cellular oxidation, safeguarding the health of your cells.
Try adding in flaxseed, chia seeds, hemp seeds or walnuts to your favorite smoothie recipes. All of these foods have a good source of Omega-3 fatty acids, known as Alpha-linolenic acid, or ALA. These simple additions can providing 1000-2000 mg of ALA per tablespoon.
Look for calcium and vitamin D fortified soy or almond milks to use as a base to your smoothie. Deep dark leafy greens can also be a rich source of calcium and magnesium and blend nicely into fruit smoothies. Nut butters such as almond butter contain vitamin E and can be an easy smoothie add-in.
Additional smoothie options can even include spices such as turmeric, known for its anti-inflammatory properties. Try a variation of some popular combinations, like the recipe below:
Sumptuous Summer Smoothie
1/2 cup frozen berries
1 handful each of spinach and arugula
1/2 tsp. turmeric powder
1/2 tsp. cinnamon
touch of maple syrup
add 2 tbsp. flaxseed or chia seeds
enough water, coconut water, or soymilk to cover.
Blend and enjoy!