Healthy eating habits are imperative in preventing cancer. But what if you currently have cancer? What healthy snack options are best to choose? Let’s take some time to talk about smoothies.
The best options for smoothies are: recipes loaded with fruits or vegetables and no added sugar. Remember protein is also important, especially for someone with cancer. Rather than eating a lot of red meats, please look at healthier ways to get protein in your diets, such as with smoothies or Odwalla Protein Shakes.
But because each person and type of cancer is unique, I highly encourage you to meet with a great nutritionist in your area to develop an individualized eating and vitamin plan.
Homemade smoothies can be loaded with fruit and vegetables (and cut way back on sugar which is important if you have cancer). The advantage of making your own smoothies is you can put your favorite fruits and vegetables in them and experiment to discover what you enjoy most. It’s also easy to add extra calories, protein, healthy fats, etc.
Another advantage is, no matter if you’ve chosen to use chemotherapy or go a natural route, smoothies can be easy to consume and ingredients can be added to help with nausea (e.g. ginger) and boost your immune system (e.g. turmeric). You also get important nutrition benefits like vitamin C, vitamin A, potassium, etc. Also, try to buy fruits and vegetables that are organic and locally grown.
Be sure to drink the smoothie between meals and not in place of a meal or along with a meal. The reason for this is because drinking a smoothie in place of a meal will lead to weight loss and drinking with a meal will fill you up quicker – making you eat less. The goal for most cancer patients is to take in more calories, not less.
Spinach, Kiwi, & Chia Seed Smoothie:
Spinach is an excellent source of vitamins A, B1, B2, B6, C, E, and K, as well as, fiber, calcium, and potassium. In other words, any smoothie with spinach leaves is probably a good one to try (as long as there is no added sugar!) Chia seeds contain excellent sources of fiber, good fats, manganese, and magnesium. This green recipe makes 2 servings, put in half of each ingredient into your blender if you prefer only 1 serving.
- 2 cups Unsweetened Almond Milk
- 1 ¾ cups Baby Spinach Leaves
- 1 large Organic Banana (cut in chunks & frozen)
- 1 Kiwi (ripe, peeled, & cut in chunks)
- 2 Tablespoons Chia Seeds
- ½ Tablespoon juice from a Lemon
- Optional: ½ cup fresh Pineapple (chopped)
Put Almond Milk in the blender first and then add the rest of the ingredients. Blend until the mixture is smooth, pour into a cup and enjoy!
Avocado, Strawberry, & Banana Smoothie
This smoothie contains over 400 calories and more than 15 grams of protein. The avocado provides a good source of potassium, healthy fats, and fiber.
- 1/3 cup 2% Milk
- ½ cup Greek Yogurt (adds more protein & less sugar than regular yogurt)
- 1 large Organic Banana (in chunks)
- ¼ of an Avocado (cut in half and use half of one side)
- 1 ½ cups Organic Strawberries (frozen)
- 1/8 teaspoon Vanilla Extract
To start, pour the milk in the blender first, followed by the Greek Yogurt. Add the large Banana that has been broken into chunks and the Avocado. Blend together. After those ingredients are blended together, add the frozen Strawberries and blend again. Once blended to a smooth consistency, pour into a glass and enjoy.
Kale, Berry, & Acai Power Smoothie
This smoothie is full of antioxidants, fiber, and healthy fats. The blueberries, strawberries, and banana mask the flavor of the kale. And it contains cinnamon which helps with inflammation. Also, acai powder helps to provide you with energy.
- 1 ripe banana
- 1/3 of a cup of blueberries (60g)
- 1/3 of a cup of strawberries (50g)
- 1/2 a cup of kale leaves (remove the hard parts of the stalks) (40g)
- 1/4 of a cup of almond milk or water (60ml)
- 1 tablespoon of ground flax seed
- 1 tablespoon of hemp powder
- 1 tablespoon of chia seeds
- 1 tablespoon of acai
- 1 teaspoon of cinnamon
Carrot, Banana, Turmeric, & Ginger Smoothie
Turmeric has been shown to have healing properties, help with inflammation, and boost your immune system. Everything someone with cancer needs. The carrot adds extra vitamins and ginger helps with nausea.
- ¾ cup Unsweetened Almond Milk
- 1 medium Carrot (peeled & chopped)
- 1 large Organic Banana (fresh or frozen)
- ¾ cup Pineapple Chunks (fresh or frozen)
- 1 Tablespoon of juice from a Lemon or Lime
- ¼ teaspoon Ground Turmeric
- 1 teaspoon Fresh Ginger (about the ½ small knob, peeled)
- 3-4 Ice Cubes
Pour the Almond Milk in first, followed by the remaining ingredients. Blend on medium until the mixture is smooth.
Cinnamon and Apple Cider Vinegar Smoothie
This smoothie contains super healthy ingredients that will provide your body with many important nutrients. Apple Cider Vinegar has many health benefits. Chris from ChrisBeatCancer.com says, “Clinical studies have shown: It’s good for diabetes as it lowers blood glucose levels, it lowers cholesterol, it lowers blood pressure and promotes heart health. And studies have also shown it may be able to kill cancer cells or slow their growth.” Apple Cider Vinegar has also helped people with curing: acne, allergies, the flu, fatigue, sinus infections, sore throats, arthritis, and acid reflux.
- 1 Tablespoon Apple Cider Vinegar
- 1 medium Organic Banana
- 1/2 Organic Green Zucchini
- 1 oz of Baby Spinach (rinsed off)
- 1/4 cup Water
- A drizzle of Organic, Local Honey – I buy mine at Natural Grocers
- 3/4 teaspoon Cinnamon
- 2 Tablespoons Chopped Walnuts
Begin by putting the Apple Cider Vinegar in the blender. Followed by the Banana, Green Zucchini, and Spinach. Then add the water, drizzle in the Honey, add the Cinnamon, and finally the chopped Walnuts. Then blend for 30 – 45 seconds.
Please remember that each type of cancer (& patient) is very different. So what is recommended with one cancer (potassium for example), is best avoided with another cancer type. Meeting with a nutritionist who is experienced with different types of cancers, is the best way to know what will be most beneficial and what should be avoided.
Photo credit: Pixabay