Maca and Spinach Thick Banana Smoothie

banana1 It’s an odd combination, but just wait until you’ve tried this one. A maca banana smoothie for breakfast is a better way to start the day than fumbling for coffee loaded with caffeine.

The nutrients in this combo provide long lasting energy, and something you won’t get the shakes, or a horrible ‘come-down’ from. Add in some spinach, and you are only supplementing the good nutrients your body gets.

Nutritional Facts of Bananas

One medium sized banana provides 30 grams of carbohydrates, 1 gram of protein, 3 grams of fiber and will give you 110 calories. It also supplies 10 milligrams of vitamin C, a significant amount of thiamin, riboflavin, niacin, vitamin B6 and folate along with small amounts of vitamin E and K. Bananas are fee from fat, cholesterol and sodium.

Nutritional Facts of Spinach

A cup full of raw spinach is only 27 calories, just under a gram of protein, about a gram of iron, 167 milligrams of potassium, 30 milligrams of calcium, 24 milligrams of magnesium, 58 micrograms of folate and 2813 IU of vitamin A. Not to mention vitamin K, and in generous amounts.

Health Benefits of Bananas

It is common knowledge that decreasing intake of sodium is vital to keeping blood pressure low. What is not so well known is the fact that increased intake of potassium might be just as important for widening of blood vessels and enhanced blood flow. An Imperial College of London study showed that children eating only 1 banana a day, actually reduced the chances of developing asthma by 34%.

High fiber diets have been shown to have a positive effect on blood glucose levels, and lowers the risk of colorectal cancer. Bananas also contain tryptophan, an amino acid that is linked with preserving memory, and providing a boost in ones mood. The vitamin C in bananas helps to eliminate free radicals, which are known to cause cancer.

Health Benefits of Spinach

spinach Spinach houses over a dozen flavonoids which are potent anti-inflammatory and anti-cancer agents. Latest medical research indicates that spinach consumption can decrease the risk of breast cancer in women.

In addition, inflammation plays a significant role in a number of disease processes. The flavonoids and carotenoid in spinach have anti-inflammatory properties. Lutein and the antioxidant zeaxanthin play a significant role in protecting the retina and macula and are key components in preventing age related eye problems, like macular degeneration.

Other antioxidants found in spinach, like vitamin C, beta-carotene and manganese, relieve oxidative stress which is a major contributor to a wide variety of health problems, like high blood pressure, heart disease and stroke. Vitamin K is essential to bone health and fortunately just one cup of fresh spinach leaves satisfies 200% of this vitamin’s daily requirements.

How to Make a Banana, Spinach and Maca Smoothie

blender Ingredients:

  • 2 medium, ripe bananas
  • 1 heaping tbsp maca powder
  • 1 cup raw spinach finely chopped
  • 1-1.5 cups ice

Extras: Pitted dates add a nice twist to the flavor!

Directions: Toss all in high-speed blender and blend until smooth.

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