My husband Graham has been suffering from man flu this week. Really, really bad man flu. To be fair he's been suffering with a really bad cold, but to him it was much worse.
I couldn't stand it any longer! I had to do something about it, so I started with this smoothie. I made him drink two glasses of it as soon as I whizzed it up, then I made chilli for dinner and after dinner I made him drink water, take his vitamins, drink more smoothie and eat some fresh pineapple.
The result? He got up the next day and was feeling much better. It wasn't gone, but a vast improvement. I put it down to the combination of fresh cold-fighting ingredients in the smoothie, the spice in the chilli, the vitamins and keeping himself hydrated. That last point is so important, people don't drink enough water.
So what were the ingredients in my smoothie and why are they cold-fighting heroes?
Carrots are rich in beta-carotene, which converts into Vitamin A and helps support our immune system, which in turn helps to fight colds.
Oranges are high in Vitamin C. It won't cure your cold, but it can help to reduce how long it lasts as it also boots your immune system.
Fresh Ginger is a powerful anti-inflammatory and antioxidant. It fights the cold bug and helps clear sinuses as well as improving the absorption of nutrients.
Turmeric is my secret ingredient and one everyone is excited about just now. It's also a powerful antioxidant with anti-inflammatory effects and is high in iron, potassium, zinc, vitamin B6, A and C. Fresh turmeric is becoming more available, but if you can't use it, use a good quality ground turmeric.
Baobab Powder is high in Vitamin C, fibre and has more antioxidants than any fruit. It's an African superfood, a pod from the baobab tree.
I made my smoothie in my Optimum G2.1 blender. It has six function buttons including a fruit function. I just threw everything in including the ice, then topped it up with some water and hit the fruit button.
- Don't make the mistake of making a smoothie without adding water or freshly squeezed juice, you'll be left with a thick sludge rather than a delicious drink.
- If you don't have a power blender don't add ice to your blender. There's a good chance it will burn out the motor.
- If you have a basic blender, chop the ingredients into chucks before blending them.
If you don't have a power blender or can't afford one yet, be careful when blending and take note of my tips so your current blender will last longer.
Fight a Cold Smoothie
A healthy smoothie full of antioxidants, vitamins and minerals to help fight the common cold. A delicious fruity drink with a bit of a kick from the ginger and turmeric.
- 4 large carrots
- 3 large oranges
- 5-10 cm piece fresh ginger (root)
- 2 tsp baobab
- 1 tsp turmeric
- 100ml water
- a good handful of ice cubes
1. Peel the oranges, carrots and ginger (cut them into chunks if you have a basic blender).2. Throw all of your ingredients into a blender and whizz until smooth. Skip the ice if you don't have a power blender.3. Pour and enjoy!
Yield: Makes 4-6 glasses
I've tried a few low cost blenders, a Kenwood, a Vitamix and all of the Optimum blender range. My personal favourites are the Optimum 9400 (I love the dial that lets you have full control) and the Optimum G2.1 (which has a digital panel and preset buttons so you can just hit a button and walk away).
Disclosure: I work with Froothie. I joined the team after falling in love with their blenders. They don't expect me to write a positive review and any opinions expressed are my own.