Papaya Tangerine Smoothie

Today’s breakfast was a refreshing flavor treat of creamy, luscious papaya. I added tangerine, coconut milk, and strawberries for a WOW! Intensely luscious smoothie! Look for healthy organic or non-GMO papaya, as many papayas are genetically modified. This papaya milkshake tastes like the papaya “batidos” I used to buy on the streets in Mexico made with (uh oh!) sweetened evaporated milk and sugar! Fortunately, papaya offers a tantalizing tropical taste with a relatively low sugar content. Yay! You’ll notice this recipe uses non-dairy milk and low sugar fruits. Papaya offers many health benefits, including the digestive enzyme, papain, that supports the intestines, stomach, and pancreas. A rich source of antioxidants such as carotenes, vitamin C, and flavonoids, papaya is also high in B vitamins, folate, and pantothenic acid. Together, these nutrients promote cardiovascular health and protect against colon cancer. Oh, but this smoothie is all about the flavor!

Here are 8 tips for making the best smoothies!

  1. Drink smoothies anytime, breakfast, lunch, snack, or dinner. I have one every day.
  2. Use low sugar fruits and veggies for stable blood sugar. Tart fruits like blueberries, raspberries, grapefruit, kiwi, Granny Smith apples, and bit of lemon or lime, qualify as low-sugar fruits. Skip the sweet fruits such as pineapples, mangos, bananas, and grapes. They’ll give you a brief blood sugar ride followed by a crash, and set up a metabolic cycle that has to be fed with – you guessed it – more sugar. This pattern invites diabetes, obesity, and aging.
  3. Look for organic, non-GMO papayas. (Did you know that most papayas are genetically modified?)
  4. Drink smoothies at room temperature or warmer, so they’re digested well. The stomach can’t digest cold food. Your body has to warm it to 98.6° F. in order to break it down into molecular nutrient bits. So I don’t recommend ice in smoothies. I prefer to make them with lukewarm filtered water. Try it!
  5. Drink slowly, savor every sip. “Chew” your drink to mix it with digestive juices in the mouth. Gulping it down blocks digestion, and you’ll miss the enjoyment of the flavor.
  6. Drink smoothies immediately for maximum nutrient benefit and optimum life force. Drink it now, rather than saving it for later. Smoothies oxidize and lose nutrient value quickly.
  7. Vary your smoothie ingredients every day, so your body and digestion always get a surprise to wake up! Eating the same thing day after day invites food intolerances.
  8. Be inventive, make changes, add optional ingredients like cucumber, parsley, almond butter, protein powder, Vitamin C crystals, or berries. Try this basic recipe, and experiment with your own additions! Serves 2.

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Papaya Tangerine Smoothie

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Ingredients

  • 1/2 papaya
  • Zest of one tangerine (orange is yummy too!)
  • 2 tangerines, peeled and seeded (or orange)
  • 1 cup thick, full-fat coconut milk (I used Native Forest Organic Coconut Cream Premium), or the entire contents of 1 young coconut including pulp and water.
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • 1-inch piece fresh ginger root, chopped
  • A few tablespoons filtered water, if it's too thick to pour
  • Optional Ingredients:
  • Handful strawberries
  • 1/4 cup protein powder
  • Dash vanilla
  • 1 tablespoon Just Like Sugar Table Top natural chicory root sweetener, or 1/2 teaspoon PureLo Lo Han Sweetener by Swanson, or 2 teaspoons raw honey, or your favorite sweetener. (I don't think you'll need sweetener.)

Instructions

  1. Combine all ingredients in a blender or food processor. Process until smooth and creamy. Add a bit if water if needed to pour. Drink.