Chai Spice Banana Smoothie
I'm excited to share this guest blog post from Dr. Ben Connolly of Cornerstone Naturopathic. I've been working with Dr. Ben to increase my energy levels, trying out a few new recipes. During the cooler months, I thought a smoothie with warming flavours might be nice, so we collaborated on this rich-tasting, energy-boosting, chai spice banana smoothie. Enjoy!
How many of us tend to regularly miss breakfast? It’s not uncommon – mornings for many of us are busy, stressful, and as much about racing the clock as it is nourishing ourselves for the day to come. Problematically, the racing component tends to win out over the nourishing, especially when kids, traffic, and work enter the equation.
What many don’t know is that breakfast is so much more than filling your stomach for the first third of your day. A proper meal in the morning has residual effects on the entire day, and that’s why Michelle and I have put together a shake that’s shaking up (I know) the status quo.
We get that you’ve heard the promise before. ‘Simple and effective breakfasts that leave you equipped to have a great day and that your kids will love too!’ or something to that effect. What these promises don’t account for are the range of ingredients that require prep and peeling, the use of kitchen hardware, and the general lack of understanding coming from master chefs who don’t have a non-stop morning. Here’s the idea: this is a quick, easy, healthy breakfast that’s a cinch to add to your routine and will have lasting effects through the day. That’s it.
The concept is a handful of easy ingredients that call the blender their home, and will yield a shake that can be had on the run. Here’s the recipe:
1 cup unsweetened almond milk
1/2 banana, peeled, halved
2 tbsp almond butter (or another nut butter)
1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil (or avocado oil)
1 tbsp oats (uncooked)
3 tbsp hulled hemp seeds
1.5 tsp chai spice mixture
4 ice cubes
Chai Spice Mixture:
2 tsp cinnamon
2 tsp cardamom
1 tsp ginger
1 tsp cloves
1 tsp nutmeg
It’s that easy. A bundle of healthy ingredients that won’t ask for a cutting board, a stovetop, or even a knife. Here’s why we chose the items above:
Almond milk is a low-calorie beverage that is high in several different vitamins and minerals, especially vitamin E.
Bananas have a number of health benefits: they help to moderate blood sugar levels, they contain a fair amount of fiber (making them a great for the digestive system), they aid in heart health and they contain antioxidants. They also contain many vitamins and minerals, such as, potassium, magnesium, copper, vitamin B6 and many, many more.
Almond butter, just like almond milk, is a fantastic source of vitamins and minerals. It also contains loads of healthy fats and fiber to help with your digestive system.
EVOO aids in cardiovascular disease, blood pressure, cholesterol, Alzheimer’s, depression, and a long list of other conditions and diseases. It is a healthy fat and a great source of vitamin E.
Oats, among the healthiest grains on the earth. They are a super source of protein, carbs and fiber and they contain a number of important vitamins, minerals and antioxidant plant compounds. Oats also contain 191% of our suggested daily intake of the mineral Manganese, which contributes to healthy bone structure, bone metabolism and in creating essential enzymes for building bones.
Hemp seeds provide a generous source of healthy fats and essential fatty acids to your diet. They also contain high amounts of minerals and vitamins. They’re rich in Gamma-Linolenic acid (GLA), which is important in helping smooth muscles, control inflammation and body temperature and is vital to several other bodily functions. GLA can help with a number of different diseases and symptoms such as, PMS, ADHD and obesity.
Chai spice is most commonly made up of cinnamon, ginger, cardamom, allspice, star anise and pepper; each one of these contains their own health properties that boast a variety of different benefits. Cinnamon has antibacterial, anti-inflammatory and antifungal properties. Ginger combats stomach ailments, aiding in digestion and increasing metabolism. Cardamom has traditionally been used in medicines as a digestive aid, it is also used in relieving symptoms of depression. Nutmeg benefits brain function, digestive health and can be used to ease insomnia.
We hear it relentlessly, but breakfast is truly the most important meal of the day, and that applies to all of us, not just our children. Set the example, and ensure you’re getting the most of your morning routine by implementing our shake. We think it’ll leave you feeling empowered throughout the day, and would love to hear your thoughts on our social media!
An advocate for healthy living and a foremost expert in evidence-based preventative and naturopathic medicine, Ben Connolly, N.D., is the owner of Cornerstone Naturopathic and described as both an amiable and highly analytical physician. His vision for the Cornerstone clinic has culminated into a state-of-the-art facility - a crossroads for high quality health care and optimized lifestyle consultation, which he operates in partnership with Julie Connolly.
This post is sponsored by Cornerstone Naturopathic.