Anti-Inflammatory Blueberry Smoothie

October 17, 2013

in Drinks

Anti-Inflammatory Smoothie

It took me nearly a month to get an appointment to see an allergist, so in that time, I made it my mission to try to eat in a way that would help my body take things down a notch (or ten). In general, eating a whole foods, plant-based diet is amazing for calming inflammation and keeping blood sugar levels stable. Unfortunately, when my allergies were at their worst and I was reacting to raw fruits and vegetables, I wasn’t eating nearly as many salads and smoothies as I would have liked. Actually, I was eating none for a couple of weeks. And man, did I feel it! I was basically living on rice, sweet potatoes, kale and chickpeas in one form or another.

Frozen Blueberries

I knew I needed to work on lowering inflammation, but I had to really get back to basics, trying one ingredient at a time to make sure it wasn’t going to make me feel worse. The smoothie recipe I’m sharing today is one that evolved over that one month period when I was in between doctors appointments. It started as two ingredients – homemade brown rice milk and frozen blueberries – and then I later swapped the brown rice for walnut milk once I determined nuts were okay. It remains extremely basic and just five ingredients, but one thing I have come to appreciate over the last couple of months is simple food. Like, really simple food.

Walnuts & CinnamonHomemade Walnut Milk

Walnuts, blueberries and ground flaxseeds rank high up on the list of foods that help calm inflammation, and they also happen to make a delicious smoothie when combined with cinnamon (and maybe ginger if you’d like to try that too). The molasses is included because it’s a great source of iron, which is something I learned I need a little more of in my diet. I left the greens out of this variation, but I’m a big proponent of adding them to smoothies and wherever you can fit them into meals. Broccoli would actually be a great addition if you’re feeling adventurous. It’s also highly anti-inflammatory and very mild tasting. I’ll often add the leftover stems to smoothies when I’m not loading mine up with spinach or kale.

Blueberry Smoothie

I had a tough time adjusting my meals to do my allergen elimination diet, and honestly, it’s kind of thrown me for a loop even now that I’m back to eating a broader range of things.  Pre-meltdown in August, I was eating what some would consider an obscene amount of raw produce, and now, I find myself gravitating more towards cooked foods and grains. It may also be the cooler weather and that’s fine, but I know I need to get back to my giant salads in order to feel my most energized and balanced. The convenience of smoothies is helping with that, and this one is a very tasty step in the right direction.

BlueberriesBlueberry Walnut Smoothie

Anti-Inflammatory Spiced Blueberry Walnut Smoothie
Author: 
Prep time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 1
 
This smoothie is packed full of anti-inflammatory foods and perfectly spiced for cooler Fall weather.
Ingredients
  • 1 cup homemade walnut milk*
  • 1 cup frozen wild blueberries (organic if possible)
  • 1 tablespoon freshly ground flax seeds
  • 1 tablespoon molasses
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • handful of ice cubes (optional)
Instructions
  1. Add all of the ingredients to a high speed blender and blend until smooth.
  2. Pour into your favorite glass and enjoy!
Notes
To make the homemade walnut milk, soak 1 cup of raw walnuts in water in the refrigerator for 8 hours or overnight. Once soaked, drain and rinse them well and add them to the blender with 4 cups of filtered water. Blend on high for 1 minute or until the walnuts are very finely ground. Strain through a nut milk bag if you like, although I usually skip this step when I use walnuts. Walnut milk can be stored in the fridge for 3-4 days.

 

Have you ever had to temporarily adjust your meals, only to find that the transition back to your preferred style of eating was surprisingly difficult?

xo
Amanda

{ 12 comments… read them below or add one }

Anna {Herbivore Triathlete} October 17, 2013 at 8:29 pm

Gorgeous photos Amanda!

I am glad to hear that you are back to being able to eat a bit more freely, I can only imagine how frustrating the past few months have been for you.

The smoothie looks and sounds amazing. I love adding broccoli stems to my smoothies (I keep a bag in freezer of broccoli cuts, strawberry tops, etc.) I am intrigued by the walnut milk, sounds yummy.

Reply

Amanda October 17, 2013 at 8:59 pm

Thanks, Anna! Photo credit goes to Aaron. :)
Good idea to freeze the leftover bits of produce. I’m going to have to remember that tip. Usually I just end up juicing them at the end of the week, which can make for some pretty random flavor combinations!

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Heather October 18, 2013 at 1:03 pm

Looks like something good to eat on a warm day :) Plus it’s good for you! Thank you for sharing

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Katie @ Produce on Parade October 21, 2013 at 12:44 pm

Great photos! And I am loving your new blog design, very nice :) Cheers, Amanda!

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silvia October 28, 2013 at 8:45 am

Hi,
can i substitute the walnut milk for another one? In Portugal this kind of milk is hard to find.
thanks

Reply

Amanda October 28, 2013 at 9:20 am

Sure! I made my own walnut milk (all you need are walnuts and a good blender), but almond, soy, rice, or any other non-dairy milk will work just fine!

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Ally @ Om Nom Ally November 9, 2013 at 10:53 pm

What a delicious and nutritious anti-inflammatory smoothie! I can understand you gravitating towards warmer and cooked foods, they are definitely easier on the digestive system.
Hope you’re doing well with your post-elimination diet, I manage a health-food store that specialised in allergy/intolerance friendly-food and understand how difficult the stages of healing can be.
Ally @ Om Nom Ally recently posted…Smoothie OTW Link-Up (Week 1), November 10th, 2013 + Banish Back Pain Smoothie

Reply

Amanda November 10, 2013 at 10:20 am

Thanks, Ally! I am mostly back to eating everything, thankfully. :)

Reply

moomoo November 24, 2013 at 12:22 pm

Awesome post and thanks for the walnut milk recipe! May I suggest picking up some glass straws? I got mine from glass dharma and then later from reuseit (.com). They make a variety of diameters. No waste and no paper/dye/glue in my drink. I’m not affiliated with either company but use the medium diameter for smoothies and skinnier version for tea, coffee, and water with citrus or apple cider vinegar. They clean easily with a pipe cleaner that comes with a set of 3 straws. I also have some skinny metal ones from Restoration hardware, but I love the glass ones.

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Amanda November 24, 2013 at 4:47 pm

I’ve been wanting some glass straws for a while, so thanks for the reminder! The (compostable) paper straw is a photo prop – I like the way it looks. :) I think I’m with you on the metal ones. Something about the thought of drinking from those makes my teeth hurt.

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Alice Henry December 28, 2013 at 3:53 pm

Just made blueberry smooth and it tasted very good. Just read what good the things do for you. My husband also like it. He does try to many of the juice drinks I make.

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Amanda December 29, 2013 at 9:09 am

That’s great, Alice! I’m so glad you and your husband enjoyed the smoothie!

Reply

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