Here's a smoothie to fuel your brain and start your day right. This is brain food! Making good decisions requires feeding your brain well. Your brain is the most expensive real estate in your body, requiring the most resources. Although only 2% of your body weight, your brain uses 20% - 30% of the calories you consume, so feed it right with this chocolate blueberry smoothie.
I got to know famous brain doctor Dr. Daniel Amen while working with The Daniel Plan team. Dr. Amen is a New York Times best-selling author and co-creator of The Daniel Plan. He is also the founder of Amen Clinics, along with his wife Tana.
Thousands of people have benefited from their fantastic work, including me. "Eating right is critical to thinking right", says Dr. Amen. The better the fuel, the better we are able to make smart decisions. And so I created this chocolate blueberry smoothie recipe.
Because they are super easy to make and almost infinitely variable for taste and nutrition needs. Plus the ingredients are easy to keep on hand. Milk of choice can be made easily and better than boxed version with additives, and it is usually more economical to make your own (and tastes better).
Fruit can either be fresh or frozen, spinach leaves keep for awhile in the fridge (and can be used for salads), the rest is non-perishable pantry items.
All you need is a blender.
Here's the brain healthy foods that go into this smoothie and their health benefits, below. Put ingredients into a blend and puree into a delicious brain-boosting smoothie.
- Almond milk (or milk of choice)
- Frozen blueberries (or fresh)
- Fresh spinach leaves
- Unsweetened cocoa powder
- Small banana
- Ground cinnamon
- Protein powder of choice
- Sweetener of choice
For help choosing a good protein powder, read this article.
To sweeten up your smoothies a bit, try berry stevia drops or this keto monk fruit-based sugar-free syrup. A little honey works too.
Smoothies are so easy! Just place all of the ingredients into the blender and blend until smooth. If it gets too thick, add a little water.
- Berries - Studies show that blueberries in particular help protect the brain from oxidative stress and may reduce the effects of age-related diseases such as Alzheimer's disease or dementia. Berries are antioxidant powerhouses.
- Bananas - Are full of vitamins, minerals and amino acids that play a supporting a role in keeping brains functioning at optimal levels. They also contain high levels of tryptophan, which converts into serotonin. Bananas are happy mood food.
- Cocoa powder - Be sure to buy unsweetened. It's full of beneficial plant compounds called flavinoids, which may help lower blood pressure, support healthy cholesterol, improve regulation of blood sugar and brain function (plus iron and magnesium).
- Spinach - Leafy greens, supporting brain health, skin, hair, bones, iron, vitamins and minerals.
- Cinnamon - Long known for its healing properties, preserves brain function, stabilizes blood sugar, with powerful immune-boosting compounds.
More Smoothie Recipes
- Healthy pumpkin pie smoothie
- Green tea and avocado smoothie
- Spiced coconut mango smoothie
- Chocolate maca energy smoothie
Find more recipes and inspiration on the smoothie and juices page.
For More Reading
- Ten Ways to Conquer Your Cravings (for a healthy brain), by Dr. Daniel Amen
- For another terrific chocolate smoothie try this chocolate maca energy smoothie.
Chocolate Blueberry Brainfood Smoothie
- 10 ounces almond milk
- ¾ cup blueberries or blackberries
- 1 big handful baby spinach leaves
- 2 teaspoons unsweetened cocoa powder
- 1 teaspoon cinnamon
- ½ banana
- 2 scoops protein powder of choice about 20 grams protein
- Place everything in a blender and blend until smooth. Drink immediately.