From the USANA Test Kitchen: Heart Smart Smoothies

Did you know that heart disease is the leading cause of death for both men and women in the United States? In 2008, over 616,000 people died of heart disease — that’s almost 25% of total deaths that year. But it doesn’t have to be this way. There are simple changes we can make to live better… and longer.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the number one factor that puts people at risk for heart disease is inactivity. Being a “desk job” person myself, I have to make a conscious effort to move around throughout the day. Instead of sending an inter-office envelope, I’ll hand-deliver a document to the third-floor of my building. It only takes a few minutes, but it keeps my body moving and my mind more alert.

A personal trainer once told me that even going on a daily walk around your neighborhood or taking a restorative yoga class can help — as long as you keep yourself moving. Consider the Harvard Alumni Study that found that men who averaged at least eight flights a day enjoyed a 33 percent lower mortality rate than their sedentary counterparts. All they did was walk up a few flights of stairs!

Also among the risk factors for heart disease are obesity, high blood pressure and high cholesterol. As we know, eating healthier can make a big difference.

The American Heart Association recommends consuming eight or more fruit and vegetable servings every day, and smoothies are a great way to pack a lot of produce into a single meal.

Today’s USANA Test Kitchen recipes feature three heart smart smoothie recipes that are quick to whip up and easy to take with you wherever you go!

Cranberry Fruit Smoothie (adapted from AHA recipe)

Servings: 1

Ingredients

  • 1 (6-oz) carton of your favorite low-fat yogurt
  • 1 banana (or other fruit of your choice)
  • 1/3 cup 100% cranberry juice (not cranberry cocktail)
  • 1/2 cup crushed ice
  • 1 Tbs vanilla Nutrimeal
  • 1 tsp Fibergy Plus

Preparation

  1. Add banana, juice and ice to blender; pulse for 5 seconds
  2. Add Nutrimeal and Fibergy Plus; puree for 5-10 seconds or until smooth

Green Smoothie Spectacular

Serving: 2

Ingredients

  • 1 ripe banana, cut in chunks
  • 1 cup seedless grapes
  • 1 (6-oz) tub low-fat vanilla yogurt
  • 1/2 apple, peeled, cored and cut into chunks
  • 1-1/2 cups fresh spinach leaves
  • 1/2 cup crushed ice
  • 2 teaspoons Fibergy Plus
  • 1/2 ripe avocado or cucumber (optional)

Preparation

  1. Add all ingredients to blender; pulse for 10-15 seconds or until smooth

Sunshine Smoothie

Servings: 2

Ingredients

  • 1 ripe banana
  • 1 apple, peeled, seeded and cut into chunks
  • 1/4 cup fresh carrots, cut into chunks
  • 1 cup orange juice (not from concentrate)
  • 1/2 low-fat milk or non-dairy alternative, such as soy milk
  • 1/2 cup crushed ice
  • 2 Tbs Vanilla Nutrimeal (or Orange Crème, if you have it)

Preparation

  1. Add banana, apple, carrots, juice, milk and ice to blender; pulse for 5 seconds
  2. Add Nutrimeal; puree for 5-10 seconds or until smooth

Your Turn

Have you switched to Cheerios for breakfast? Are you consuming more whole grains? What are some simple changes you’ve made for your heart health?

Eating well is an important part of being healthy. From the USANA Test Kitchen is a monthly column offering useful nutrition tips, as well as delicious, healthy recipes that use USANA products in creative ways.

Photos by Raji Barbir

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Diana Yin

About the Author

About the Author: Diana is a former member of USANA's public relations team. .

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15 Reader Comments

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  1. Yes! Thank you! Going to share with two dear friends right now who suffered major heart attacks in the past year. Love you guys!

  2. Camille Fletcher Camille Fletcher says:

    Great post Diana! These all look so yummy and I’m always searching for good smoothie recipes. Can’t wait to try them.

  3. Alain says:

    Thank you, for those excelent recepis.

  4. Judy Knight says:

    Take with you? Can I mix up one of these and carry it in a coldpack for 2 hours later?

  5. Diana Yin Diana Yin says:

    Hi Judy,

    I haven’t tried holding smoothies for two hours, but they’re an easier meal to take with you to work or on your way to the gym than, say, oatmeal or quinoa– both of which are great breakfasts, but not as portable or easy to eat on-the-go. You’ll have to let me know if the smoothies hold for that long with a ice pack!

    -Diana

  6. GLORIA says:

    Judy, Dianne
    Too keep smoothies cold 2 hours or longer- just carry them in the metal starbucks or similar insulated mugs for hot drinks- will keep shake cold 2-3 hours, some even longer! yum!

  7. Helen Wenley says:

    I am following the ‘Diet Evolution’ from Dr Steven Gundry. So I do not eat any grain products (that includes Cheerios) or sugar products (that includes fruit). My smoothies consist of Nutrimeal + Fibergy Plus with 1/4 teaspoon cinnamon – works for me!

  8. These look delicious! Thanks for sharing!

  9. Anntonette says:

    These look so good. I will be trying them all.

  10. shaunkwong says:

    I love these tips. Thanks for sharing.

  11. Lori Bennison says:

    What is the nutritional information on these smoothies please?

  12. Laura Barry says:

    Love USANA nutrimeals as they are low glycemic. Will try the recipes !!!!

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