I rarely crave smoothies outside of breakfast time, but this is one exception. Some afternoons I need a flavorful pick-me-up, and this makes my cells sing. Because of this wild world we’re living in with a global pandemic and everyone on edge with their health, I developed a recipe that speaks directly to some immune supporting nutrients that may add protection against COVID.
Food is medicine, and here is how it’s applied in the defense of COVID:
- Turmeric- Turmeric contains curcumin, thought to be an herbal therapy against COVID. It is highly anti-inflammatory. When inflammation is down, the immune system is up. Its antimicrobial properties can target viral respiratory infections like bronchitis, influenza, and coughs….sound familiar, 2020? Turmeric also acts as a natural pain killer to help ease body aches from illness.
- Ginger- This root is another anti-inflammatory spice that acts as an antimicrobial. Microbes can be either bacteria or viruses. COVID is a virus. Fresh ginger has been known as a remedy for RSV and bronchitis, both of which are also viruses (although bronchitis can also be bacterial). One study showed ginger may provide a therapeutic option alone for respiratory and airway conditions such as asthma.
- Carrots– Carrots contain beta-carotene, a precursor to vitamin A. Your body burns through Vitamin A during times of illness (don’t believe me? test your night vision next time you’re sick!). Vitamin A is ONLY found in animal products. You may be thinking, “wait, I thought my canned pumpkin said 130% of vitamin A?” That label is assuming that under the perfect circumstances, with the perfect genetics, with the perfect nutritional mechanisms, you COULD convert the amount of Beta Carotene in that can of pumpkin into that much Vitamin A. Most of our bodies aren’t walking around in a state of nutritional perfection though, so we aren’t getting what that label promises. All the more reason to get daily sources of rich orange/yellow produce in the diet. Vitamin A is also a fat soluble vitamin, which is why I added:
- Coconut Oil- This medium chain triglyceride is insta brain fuel and also helps bind to turmeric and vitamin A to help increase absorption and assimilation. Turmeric and vitamin A are both dependent on fat to help them get into the blood stream and work their magic. Coconut oil is another antimicrobial ingredient in this smoothie.
- Oranges and lemon– Some countries are brilliantly using mega doses of intravenous vitamin C as a treatment for Coronavirus. While the modest amount of vitamin C in a few citrus fruits would be a small drop in the bucket compared to the massive dose of C that is actually proving to be treat the disease, the oranges and lemons in this smoothie will build a foundation for sustainable immune support.
As with all smoothies, add the hardest/most dense ingredients at the top for the most efficient blending (frozen fruits, ice cubes, or in this case, raw carrots). Liquids always go at the bottom.
Any left overs can be made into popsicles as a standby for if you end up coming down with a fever or sore throat and don’t have much of an appetite. Or, you could always enjoy your popsicle in perfectly good health and dream of sunshine on a island, because we could all use a tropical escape right about now too!
Carrot Zinger Smoothie
Carrot Zinger Smoothie
- 1 1/2 cups non-dairy liquid of choice (coconut milk, coconut water, almond milk, etc)
- 2 large oranges, peeled, or 4 small clementines/Cuties
- 1 lemon, peeled
- 2 Tbsp coconut oil
- 2-3 Tbsp seeds of choice (hemp hearts, chia seeds, or flaxseeds)
- 1 teaspoon ginger (or less if you want a little less zing to your zinger)
- 1 teaspoons turmeric (or less if you’re building up an acquired taste!)
- 2 medium carrots, peeled and cut into 1-2″ pieces
Optional: add a scoop of collagen powder, bone broth protein powder, protein powder of your choice. I don’t use protein powders with my kids, so we’ve settled on protein coming from the hemp seeds in the recipe above.
Add all ingredients in the order given and blend in high-speed blender. Remember all frozen or firm ingredients should always go last into your blender for the best blending.
Refrigerate left overs in sealed glass jars for up to 3 days or freeze for up to 3-6 months in popsicle molds or glass mason jars.
Photos and Content Copyright © Jaclyn Beaty Nutrition, 2020