Pineapple and Banana Energizing Smoothie

Now that I am in my third trimester, I am having a hard time digesting food, especially meat. I have been making protein smoothies and juicing fruits and vegetables, which has aided my digestion tremendously. I make this protein shake in the morning and my body (stomach) feels good, and I feel energized for the day. Plus, the smoothie takes under 5 minutes to make. In addition to making the smoothie, I juice at least twice a week.

Ingredients For Smoothie
1 Banana
1/2 cup of Greek plain yogurt
1/2 cup of frozen or fresh diced pineapple
2 ice cubes
1/2 cup coconut milk
1 scoop of vanilla whey protein powder (Again, make sure it does not contain artificial sweeteners)

Directions:
Blend banana, pineapple, Greek plain yogurt, ice, coconut milk, and protein powder in a blender. Add a tablespoon of water to reach desired consistency. Enjoy!

Benefits:
1. Pineapple is a great source of Vitamin C, manganese. And a good source of Vitamin B1, copper, magnesium, and dietary fiber.
2. Bananas are extremely high in potassium and low in sodium, which helps prevent high blood pressure. They have a natural antacid effect, so eating a banana helps with heartburn
3. Coconut milk contains lauric acid, antimicrobial lipids and capric acid, which have antibacterial, antifungal and antiviral properties. The body converts lauric acid into monolaurin, which is believed to fight the viruses and bacteria that cause herpes, influenza and even HIV

Juicing Ingredients:
2 apples (I like Fugi)
8 large carrots
1/2 inch fresh ginger

Directions:
Thoroughly wash the apples and carrots. Cut the apples into slices and remove seeds. Feed the apples, carrots, and ginger into the juicer. Stir and enjoy!

Benefits:
1. Juicing removes the plant fibers from the fruit and vegetables that our bodies have a hard time digesting and leaves the nutrients
2. ½ cup of carrots provides more than one day’s worth of vitamin A
3. Grapefruit, oranges, and other citrus fruits provide healthy portions of vitamin C
4. Fruit juices are a good source of essential minerals like iron, copper, potassium, sodium, iodine and magnesium

And just remember: During pregnancy, hormonal changes decrease your immune system function, which makes you more susceptible to food-borne illnesses. Some types of bacteria can cross the placenta and affect the growth and development of your unborn baby. In some cases, ingesting listeria or toxoplasmosis-causing bacteria can negatively impact your baby’s brain and neurological development. Pregnant women are advised to avoid unpasteurized juices and to wash carrots and all other fruits and vegetables carefully (2).

Sources:
1. http://www.fns.usda.gov/fdd/facts/hhpfacts/New_HHPFacts/Veges/HHFS_CARROTS_FRESH_F110-114_Final.pdf
2. http://www.livestrong.com/article/510654-what-are-dangers-of-juicing-carrots/
3. Coconut Research Center; Coconut; 2004

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