Smoothies: a guide for arthritis sufferers
Juices are a great way to get a whole bunch of anti-inflammatory nutrients into your body – and quickly. This is good news for people with bothersome pain. Juicing is, in theory, especially handy if you’re not keen on eating salads and veggies.
But the problem is that juicing also removes most of the beneficial fiber in fruits and vegetables. If you’re suffering from constipation or want to feel fuller for longer, consider making smoothies your friend instead.
Here’s your guide to mastering the art of smoothie making.
1. Invest in a good blender
Having the right equipment will make it much quicker to blend all your ingredients into a smooth drink, and will make your morning a whole lot easier.
Pack your smoothies with fruits like mangosteens and cherries, which have anti-inflammatory properties that could provide relief for arthritis sufferers.
3. Prep your ingredients the night before
It’s important that you wash all your ingredients thoroughly to remove any bacteria or pesticides before you blend them. If this sounds too time-consuming for the morning, prepare all your ingredients the night before so you just have to pop them in your blender the next day to make an instant breakfast.
Spices can add a new flavor to your smoothie to keep things interesting, and they’re good for you too. Some studies suggest that cinnamon can help regulate your blood sugar levels, while ginger has been credited with having anti-inflammatory properties.
5. Watch your sugar intake
When it comes to smoothies, you can have too much of a good thing. If you’re taking in large quantities of fruit, you’ll also be getting a lot of fructose (which is a form of sugar). And too much sugar is thought to be bad for arthritis sufferers because it can raise your levels of inflammatory messengers called cytokines.
Add an apple or some beetroot to a veggie smoothie if you need the sweetness to make your smoothie palatable, but aim to get more veggies than fruit to keep the sugar content low.
Adding avocado, coconut oil or a teaspoon of a nut butter made from almonds, walnuts or peanuts can make your smoothie more filling and reduce inflammation in your body.
Adding milk to your smoothie gives you a protein boost. But if you think you might be lactose intolerant, try another option like almond or coconut milk (which Starbucks has just introduced in all their US outlets).
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