This recipe comes at you courtesy of Dr Oz. I know, really. I didn't specifically look it up, and even when I read about it I didn't really intend on making it - it just sort of happened. It started in a gas station when we were on our way back after yet another road trip - the only magazine I was even remotely interested in had a beaming Dr Oz on the cover, holding this green smoothie. I bought it, I read all the success stories and didn't think too much of it. There are always a zillion success stories that follow articles in magazines, right? It sat on my desk in the office for days and seeing it about eleventy billion times (I passed it each time I brought my husband a coffee or picked up in there), I finally put the ingredients on the grocery list and I whipped it up the next day - and I'm not just saying this, I swear I felt different within a day. How? I felt more alert, less sluggish in general. The next day, I had another glass and felt a teeny bit better even than the first day. By the end of the week, any of the random tummy issues I had were gone and I wasn't exhausted in the middle of the afternoon - should I remind you that I have three kids?
Dr. Oz's Green Drink - from Dr Oz (makes about 3-4 servings)
2 cups spinach
2 cups cucumber
1 head celery (a little more than 2 cups)
1/2 inch/1 tsp ginger root
1 bunch parsley
2 apples (3 makes it taste much better)
juice of 1 lime
juice of 1/2 lemon
Now that I've made this so many times, I've developed a system for getting it just right and with as little mess to clean up as possibe.
So after looking at the ingredients, of course you're going to feel different drinking this over time, right? Let's break it down a bit. You know spinach is healthy, but what's so great about it? It's bursting with vitamin C and folic acid, but it also has nutrients (glycoglycerolipids) that can protect the lining of your digestive tract, and it's been shown to protect against prostate cancer. I don't have a prostate, but I'm going to go ahead and assume that any cancer-fighter is a good thing.
Cucumbers are a serious source of water, but they're also full of vitamin C and the skin is big on fiber, silica (good for your connective tissue like muscles, tendons, cartilage, etc), potassium (can help lower blood pressure), and magnesium.
We know that celery is a good source of vitamin C, and we know that vitamin C is good for colds, and I honestly didn't know that it was good against inflammatory issues (like asthma, osteoarthritis, and rheumatoid arthritis) and is also helpful in lowering blood pressure.
Kids know that ginger is good for their tummy because Grandma doles out flat ginger ale for stomachaches, it also has antioxidant and direct anti-inflammatory effects. I was so surprised to read that parsley has been shown to inhibit tumor formation in the lungs. Hello? Why is info like that not more widely known?! It has so many other positive health effects too, including folic acid and beta-carotene.
There are so many positive effects of apples, eating one a day probably will keep the doctor away! Regulating blood sugar, fiber, digestion, metabolism, and on and on. The lime and lemon juices I assumed were for flavour, but when I read about them I discovered they both have antioxidant and anti-cancer properties.
I have found that the best way to make this is to chop up all of your ingredients and mix them in a bowl, lime and lemon juices included. When you add the ginger, if you're using fresh ginger, pop it in the freezer to make it easier to grate. I put one or two spoonfuls of the mixture into the blender and then turn it on medium-high. I slowly add about 1/4 cup of water and once that's blended, I add more of the mixture, then more water. If you are going for a thick smoothie use about 1 cup or so of water, and of course if you want it more like a juice, slowly add more water.
I have read comments online of people asking why this smoothie isn't made in a juicer, because it would probably go down a little easier. So much of the potency of this combo is in the little bits of pulp that would get caught in the filters of juicers. If you want juice just crank up your blender and keep adding water - just also keep in mind that this recipe is supposed to yield 3 to 4 servings. If you add enough water to make twice that amount, you should probably have two glasses.
If this recipe had one more apple, and makes 4 servings, each servings has:
29% vitamin A
46% vitamin C
So, how does it taste? Honestly, not great. But adding apples or ginger (or both) helps the taste a lot. What helps me drink my daily dose is just that I know it's crazy good for me, and I will reward myself with a delish berry smoothie at some point in the afternoon!