Green Dream Smoothie

Green Dream Juice and Smoothie Recipe

Ingredients for Green Dream Juice

These two recipes are smooth, mild, and cooling…perfect for easy drinking on a hot day.

Recipe for Green Dream Juice

makes approximately 40 ouncesGreen Dream Juice

  • 2 large organic apples, cored and cut to fit in juicer – I recommend Golden Delicious or Fuji
  • 2 large cucumbers, peeled
  • 2 limes, peeled
  • 1 inch fresh ginger – No need to peel
  • 4 leaves green kale with stalks – Red kale won’t change the taste of the juice, but it will definitely change the color!

Recipe for Green Dream Smoothie

makes approximately 20 ouncesGreen Dream Smoothie

  • 1 large cucumber, peeled
  • 1 lime, peel cut away
  • 1 large organic apples, cored and cut – I recommend Golden Delicious or Fuji
  • ½ inch fresh ginger, peeled or 1 teaspoon ginger juice 
  • 1 green kale leaf with stalk
  • 2-3 ice cubes

Add ingredients in order listed in a powerful blender, like Vita-Mix, and blend until smooth. Add a small amount of liquid (coconut water, almond milk, etc.) if needed to help the blending process.

fresh produce

Juicing for Health

I’m happy to say I’ve started juicing again…you know I’m talking about fruits and veggies, right?  Summer is a perfect time to juice, when the goal is to enjoy the warm weather while showing off glowing skin…in a bathing suit.  Not there yet?  Adding fresh juice to your daily routine might be able to help.  If you’re new to juicing, or need a reminder of all the benefits, let me share why juicing may be right for you…

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  1. Juicing is the easiest, quickest, and most efficient way to absorb all the nutrients in fresh fruits and vegetables.  The process of heating food destroys nutrients in varying degrees, depending how you cook them.  Eating raw vegetables in the amount that’s ideal can cause digestive upset.  Juicing produce yields micronutrient-rich liquid that’s doesn’t require much effort from our digestive system.
  2. Juicing is easy.  Yes, juicing does take some prep work.  But after you select and clean your produce, it takes little time or effort.  And your meal is totally portable, able to be enjoyed on the go.  I love my Breville juicer (Juice Fountain Plus, recommended to me by Joe Cross) because it’s quick to assemble, extracts all the juice possible from fruits and veggies, is easy to take apart, and a cinch to clean.
  3. Juicing is tasty.  Freshly juiced produce is absolutely delicious!  If you’re new to juicing, it can be a little daunting to figure out what combo makes a tempting, nutritious concoction.  But after consulting the many tasty juice recipes out there, you gain the confidence to know which produce to use, and perhaps even try out your own recipes.  I recommend The Big Book of Juices by Natalie Savona for ideas and guidance.  With more than 400 recipes, you’ll never get bored. I love the nutrients list and benefits rating for each recipe, as well as the index in the back that suggests which juice recipes are helpful for what’s ailing ya.
  4. Juicing is sexy, because it makes YOU sexy.  With skin-glowing nutrients, cleansing properties, and slimming qualities that make a difference people can see…how can you not feel great about how great you look?

Although juicing does awesome things for your body, you do need to keep a few things in mind….

  1. Juice is not nutritionally complete.  There is very little to no protein, and no fat, in juice.  You need both in your diet.  I use juicing to complement my diet as a vitamin-rich snack or a detoxifying elixir.  The only time I use juice to replace meals is when I’m doing a cleanse, and in this case, I’m purposefully giving my digestive system a break from protein and fat.
  2. Fruit and sweet vegetables contain sugar.  Too much sugar, even from healthy sources, is still too much sugar.  If you’re trying to watch your weight or have blood sugar issues, use sweet veggies and fruit sparingly.  I use a carrot, beet, or apple (or half of one) for a touch of sweetness to greens-laden juices or to tone down strongly flavored vegetables like cabbage.  Adding lime or fresh ginger is a great low-sugar way to add depth to your juice or “cover up” strong vegetable flavors.  If you do use sweet produce to juice and want to keep calories/sugar on the light side, drink a small glass instead or dilute your juice with water or club soda.
  3. Use organic produce as much as possible.  Juicing requires a lot of produce…which means you’re consuming a lot of produce.  So make sure what you’re ingesting is free from pesticides and chemicals!  The worst offenders are on the Dirty Dozen list, so definitely choose organic for those.
  4. Fresh juice has a quick end date.  Freshly juiced beverages have a small window of time in which to drink them.  It’s best to drink fresh juice right away, but if you want to make juice for later, here are a few tips:
  • Store juice in a glass jar with a tight-fitting lid and refrigerate.  Make sure the juice fills up the entire jar to reduce oxidation.
  • Freeze the juice for later use.  Pop in a couple cubes of juice, frozen in an ice tray, when you’re making smoothies, shakes, and other cold beverages.
  • Taking juice with you but not drinking it right away?  Add a teaspoon of vitamin C powder or squeeze of lemon to the container to keep juice from turning brown.

Happy Juicing!

fatsickandnearlydead

Fat, Sick and Nearly Dead: A Documentary

*Please do not use the contact form on this website to send a message to Joe.  Use this form to contact him instead.  Thank you!* 

Fat, sick, and nearly dead. That was the condition Joe Cross lived in until he decided to take charge of his health and his life.  Joe, a successful businessman from Australia, vowed to leave behind his junk food diet and only drink fresh fruit and vegetable juice for 60 days as he traveled across the United States with a juicer in the back of his car.  He hired a film crew to document his pilgrimage to health, so he must have known it was going to be quite a journey.  He couldn’t have anticipated, however, the monumental effect it would have on his life or on others.

Six months later, and 90 pounds lighter, Joe was eating cleanly, thinking clearly, enjoying incredible health, and on a mission to help as many people as possible.  What started off being about a juice fast, ended up being about maintaining a balanced lifestyle.  Joe has big plans for the U.S., Australia, and Britain…getting everyone access to juicers and information to help them get healthy and choose life.

I was recently invited by my friend Donna to see his not-yet-released film with a few others.  Joe hosted the event in an apartment he was staying in while his owner-friends were away.  I had never experienced a film screening in a private residence before, and it made for a very intimate, comfy, and friendly atmosphere.

Joe served us fresh juices beforehand.  They were so delicious, we struggled not to drink him out of his entire supply.

Enjoying fresh juice before the viewing. Joe is in the background. Issac (far right) is a songwriter/musician from The Kin whose song is featured in the film.

Then we got down to business, watching the film, which was a roller-coaster of heart-warming characters, emotional stories, entertaining delivery of information, and inspiring outcomes.  It is such an important film to see and share with others, I can’t wait for its release.   Afterward, Joe joined us for an honest and in-depth discussion.  He spoke to us about his intentions with the film and his vision for its future, answered any questions we had, and asked for our feedback.

Although I don’t want to tell you the whole story, I would like to share some things I learned from the film:

  • Although no one out of the hundreds of people Joe talked to blamed anyone but themselves for their poor health or eating habits, the consensus was that they didn’t think they possessed the willpower to eat healthfully.
  • The typical American plate only consists of one-quarter vegetables, which are either over-cooked or in some form of potato.  “Would you like fries with that?”
  • Eating fresh fruits and vegetables isn’t cheap, but it’s a lot cheaper than having to treat multiple health ailments due to poor nutrition and lack of exercise.  Cost to juice – around $400/month.  Cost of heart attack – around $58,000.  Buying fresh produce looks like the better deal, right?
  • In the U.S., 70% of adults over the age of 21 take medications, 29% take 5 or more medications.  After 60 days of juicing (the fruit and veggie kind of course), Joe’s doctor discovered he no longer needed the medications he had depended on for so many years.
  • One woman who took Joe up on his 10-day juice fast challenge reported increased energy, clearer skin, and no longer suffered from migraines.
  • Only 1 person out of the 400 Joe met asked for help:  Phil, a truck driver from Arizona who had the same condition as Joe.  He not only lost a ton of weight and got healthy, but found purpose to his life and served as an inspiration to his family and community.   Such an awesome story!

I’d like to clarify that while this film is about juicing, it’s not just about juicing.  It’s about choosing fresh food over processed food.  It’s about taking responsibility for and control of your health.  It’s about choosing life and living it.  I think that’s something we can all get behind.

Want to learn more about the film?  Want to connect with Joe and get healthy?  Become a fan of his Facebook page or sign up for his Reboot email list.

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Cleansing Carrot Ginger Soup

I went a little crazy with the seeds. A rumbling stomach was to blame.

This soup is cleansing to the body, full of nutrients, and packed with flavor.  I’m a big advocate of making extra portions of food and giving them second and third lives as new dishes–this soup is no exception. I incorporated some leftover soup into grains (leftover) and veggies (previously washed and cut) for a creamy creation that took less than 10 minutes to make.  Who says you can’t eat convenient food that’s amazingly good for you and makes your taste buds sigh with delight?

Recipe

2 tablespoons olive oil

4 medium carrots, sliced ¼ inch thick

¼ green cabbage, chopped

¼ onion, chopped

2 garlic cloves, chopped

1 tablespoon fresh ginger root, peeled and chopped

2 cups organic vegetable broth

Salt and pepper to taste

Heat oil in a deep sauté pan.  Add carrots, cabbage, onion, and garlic.  Sauté until carrots are tender and onion is translucent.  Take off heat.  In a blender or food processor, add sautéed veggies and remaining ingredients.  Blend until smooth.  If you don’t have enough room in your blender or processor, do this in two batches. Add blended mixture back into sauté pan and heat through.  Salt and pepper to taste.  Sprinkle with toasted seeds.


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2 Green Smoothies, 6 Ways to Enjoy Them

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During this cleanse, I’ve been experimenting with smoothies.  I’ve managed to discover some tasty concoctions while getting in a remarkable amount of dark leafy greens!  To those of you who have never had a green smoothie, try to keep an open mind.  It’s not like drinking wheat grass, which anyone will admit tastes exactly like liquefied lawn greenery.  No, these are two truly tasty, smooth, and luscious smoothies with endless possibilities.  One is fruity, one is tangy and neither would lead you to believe you’re sipping on kale, collards or other highly nutritious, low-cal greens.  The only caveat is that you need a powerful blender.  Not the $20-$50 ones that only mix soft foods and a couple of ice cubes.  You need a Vita-Mix (which I highly recommend) or equivalently high-powered machine that can withstand the feats you will be asking of it–pulverizing whole kale, collards, and parsley into a dreamy consistency is no easy task!  It’s an investment for sure, but is totally worth it if you want perfect smoothies, dips, soups, frozen drinks, and nut butters, among other things.  These smoothies keep you full and satisfied for several hours because of the fiber from the whole fruits and greens.

Green Smoothie #1:  Fruity!

This smoothie has bright notes of apple, perkiness of strawberry, and a touch of greeny goodness!  It’s like I’m describing wine 🙂  This recipe was adapted from the one I found on Jenny Sansouci’s blog Recipe for Life.

½ to 1 cup coconut water

½ or whole banana, peeled

1 Granny Smith apple, cored and quartered

handful strawberries (about 6 large), stems cut off

2-3 leaves kale, with stems

2-3 leaves collard greens, with stems

2-3 handfuls baby spinach

couple ice cubes (optional)

Add ingredients in order listed.  Blend for around 45 seconds or until smooth.  You’re done!  If you aren’t using a Vita-Mix, I would recommend adding first four ingredients and blend before adding greens and ice.  Adjust amount of coconut water and ice to your consistency preference.  If this kind of smoothie is new for you, add more fruit to ease in your taste buds.

Green Smoothie #2:  Tangy!

This tangy smoothie is a great perk-me-up in the morning!  I adapted this one from the blog Sarma Raw–this feisty, fun lady owns the raw foods restaurant Pure Food and Wine in NYC.  If you don’t have some of the specialty items listed in the ingredients, don’t sweat it.  You’ll get a nutrient-loaded smoothie anyway.

½ cup coconut water

1 lemon, peeled (don’t worry about getting all the white pith off)

1 lime, peeled (ditto about pith)

2 cucumbers, peeled and cut into big chunks

couple chunks of pineapple, mango, or banana (if frozen, add at end)

2 tablespoons E3Live

1 tablespoon alcohol-free vanilla extract

1 squirt green or white tea extract

1 tablespoon green powder

handful parsley, with stems

handfuls of kale, collards, and/or spinach

¼ to ½ inch of fresh ginger, peeled

couple ice cubes

5-16 drops stevia (optional, see note in directions)

Add ingredients in the order listed.  Blend for at least 45 seconds.  Taste.  If you desire more sweetness, add a couple drops of stevia at a time; stir, taste, and adjust if needed.  Stevia is very concentrated and, in this case, it can be too much of a good thing!

4 more ways to enjoy the green smoothies

Ok, here’s where I might lose some of you…this gets pretty hard-core for the non-weird-eating segment of the population.  I’ve always intrigued my friends and co-workers with the homemade foods I eat.  So this is not weird for me.  If you’re willing to drink green smoothies, I think you can handle this next part…and these suggestions are totally tasty!

Additional Way #1 (see 5th pic above):  Take Green Smoothie #1 (Fruity) and pour it over whole grains.  I tried it over cooked barley and topped the whole thing with shredded coconut, almonds, and cashews.  It’s like a sweetened warm grain cereal, but with the added nutrition of greens!

Additional Way #2 (see 6th pic above):  Take Green Smoothie #2 (Tangy) and pour it over chopped apples (I used Fuji).  Add goji berries, bee pollen, almonds, and sesame seeds.  Stir.  The tanginess of the smoothie complements the fruit and nuts.  This is heaven for those of us who love lots of stuff in their bowl!

Additional Ways #3 & #4:  Switch the two smoothie combos!  I didn’t do this yet–I’m confident Fruity Smoothie would combine well with the apples/nuts/crazy stuff combo; not as confident about Tangy Smoothie and the grains, but I think it would work.

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