To Drink or Not to Drink?

I was driving home from my personal training session (gaining weight :)) at the gym after realizing I forgot my protein shake at home and was heading to University afterwards. I recalled a friend mentioning drinking a protein smoothie at Starbucks, and kept debating in my head whether to grab one or not. I passed by Starbucks and decided I’d give it a shot. They had two flavors, strawberry and orange mango. I’m a fan of anything that has to do with mango, and decided I’d give it a shot. I grabbed my usual dry roasted almonds for an extra protein punch. She handed over my drink as she finished writing my name on it. “What’s inside the cup is not so personalized“, I thought.

I took a sip of the drink and found it to be very, very sweet. Is this really a protein drink? Yikes. I knew they didn’t stick in real fresh mangoes, except the half banana she peeled and tossed in at the end. It tasted like sugary melted ice cream to me. I ended up sticking with the almonds and thought I’ll rather lack my protein shake than drink this stuff.

Starbucks "protein" smoothie

Starbucks “protein” smoothie

I was very thankful later that day after doing research and learning that this protein smoothie was nothing but a chemical based powder they use, with milk, half a banana and deception.

So I usually have regular protein powder with organic grass-fed milk or unsweetened almond milk. At times I spice things up and make a specialty.

Here I had organic frozen raspberries, RAW protein powder, a dash of chia seeds, flax seeds, and yes, raw walnuts for omega-3 , fiber, and protein boost. Of course, I had to add frozen organic mango chunks. I love mangoes!

Mangos <3

Mangos ❤

Here I had frozen organic berries, flaxseeds, and milk along with the RAW protein powder.

Organic frozen berries & RAW protein

Organic frozen berries & RAW protein

What’s up with my RAW Meal protein powder you may ask? Well, let’s begin with saying not everyone will like the taste. One friend told me it smells like cattle food grass and wouldn’t bother tasting it. More for me. Well, check out the label and you’ll see exactly why.

=) My friend calls this "cattle food" because of it's grassy color, smell, etc. Yeah, it's organic!

=) My friend calls this “cattle food” because of it’s grassy color, smell, etc. Yeah, it’s organic!

Now you know why she calls it cattle food? RAW sprouts...

Now you know why she calls it cattle food? RAW sprouts…

My Specialty Protein Drinks 

3/4-1 cup Organic/grass-fed milk or unsweetened almond milk (or coconut)*

1 cup frozen organic berries

1/4 cup frozen organic mango chunks

2 scoops RAW MEAL (Or any protein powder if you can’t handle RAW)

1 tablespoon freshly ground organic whole flaxseeds

1 teaspoon raw chia seeds

1 teaspooon organic hemp seeds

Optional: top with chunks of raw walnuts/seeds/ or chunks of fruit (organic mango, organic raspberries, etc)

Place all your ingredients in the hand blender cup (or a blender if you don’t have a hand blender and cup) and blend until smooth and well mixed. Enjoy! I like mine thick and try putting less milk* so it’s not too watery. It tastes better than ice cream!!

Raw meal w/ organic berries blend and raw walnuts...My specialty.

Raw meal w/ organic berries blend, mango chunks, and raw walnuts…My specialty.

Yeah I was using super mass :)

Yeah I was using super mass to gain weight. I bought the RAW as an alternative though.

Advertisements

Chockfull of Ingredients in Your Chocolate Ice Cream

Children scream for ice cream, and adults simply reach for it without sound. As a child I loved ice cream, until I realized what I was being fed. Turning over the container merely scares me, especially with the paragraph comprised of ingredients I can’t pronounce. So what’s in ice cream that’s a hazard to our health? Simply, too many things for me to cover, but I’ll give you a taste of it.

Carrageenan is found in almost every ice cream or frozen yogurt brand out there. It’s used as a thickening agent to make your treat nice and thick, but can also cause harmful effects on your body including cancer.  Is it worth it? Not when you can make an alternative, which I will share below.

Many frozen treats have coloring, including red 40, blue lake 1, yellow lake 5. As I’ve stated numerously, this sounds like I’m in an art classroom, not in the kitchen eating dessert. Food colorings are proven to be harmful by the FDA and have proven to cause ADHD in children.  According to labelwatch.com the CSPI, Center for Science in the Public Interest, recommends avoiding all artificial food coloring.

Watch out for the famous high fructose corn syrup, I don’t even want to get into this. I don’t believe that all sugar is created equally, and if you believe so, well read on. In no way, shape, or form do I consider that Organic Raw Honey or even dates can be on the same scale as high fructose corn syrup. While honey and dates are natural, and have plenty of health benefits, high fructose corn syrup comes from GMO ingredients. What’s to compare?

So as a treat I’ve transformed my regular frozen banana ice cream into “chocolate” banana ice cream using carob powder instead of cocoa powder for a few added health benefits. The texture is merely the same as the store bought chocolate ice cream, but the after-feeling is incomparable. This is dairy free, gluten free, soy free, additive free, added-sugar free, and most importantly guilt free. Oh and don’t forget, this has only 3 ingredients, while the majority of store-bought ice cream has a minimum of  15.

Top with organic berries, raw walnuts, carob chips, etc.

Top with organic berries, raw walnuts, carob chips, etc.

Ingredients:

4-5 frozen bananas peeled and pre-sliced *

½ cup milk (I used unsweetened almond milk, the fat adds to the creaminess)

1/3-1/2 cup carob powder (you can use this amazing raw cocoa powder)

Directions: (can’t get easier than this!)

STEP 1:

Place your frozen bananas, carob powder and almond milk in the food processor and pulse until creamy.

You may need to stop and scrap the sides a few times with a spatula (please, unplug the machine while doing so, you don’t want to accidently turn it on).

Unsweetened almond milk, frozen bananas, and carob powder.

Unsweetened almond milk, frozen bananas, and carob powder.

Place frozen bananas,  milk, and carob powder in food processor. 

Place frozen bananas, milk, and carob powder in food processor.

Yes, it's nice and creamy.

Yes, it’s nice and creamy.

Thick and creamy texture.

Thick and creamy texture.

STEP 2:

Serve in desired bowls. Top with fresh berries, mango, or other fruit, and if you’re a nut-a-holic like me, pile on raw walnuts, pistachios, or cashews. Toppings are unlimited, there are no rules. 😉

:) Yummy taste, and no damage to your health.

🙂 Yummy taste, and no damage to your health.

*The best way to have your frozen bananas is this: every time you have over-ripe bananas in your fruit plate peel them, slice them, and place them single layered in a tuber ware. Freeze them and whenever you’re in the mood for ice cream take them out and use them for such recipe.

Now, that’s ice cream to scream for. 😉

Click to follow this blog and receive notifications of new posts by email. My healthy recipes and food investigation will be sent straight to your email, in case you get off track. :)

Disclaimer

©2014 Noor Salem- All rights reserved. This information on this blog, blackbeanbrownies.wordpress.com is provided for educational and informational purposes only, and not meant to diagnose, treat, or cure any disease, or any other physical or mental ailment of the human body. ALWAYS seek consultation from your physician or health care provider for any medical related questions, or before initiating any diet or health program, trying a new food product, dietary change, supplement, or exercise. All content and images on blackbeanbrownies.wordpress.com may not be reproduced or distributed unless permitted in writing. Noor Salem and blackbeanbrownies.wordpress.com disclaim liability for any misinterpretation or misuse of any information provided here or from any injury, sickness, or damage from the use of any recommended products. This information is not provided to replace seeking a licensed physician or health care provider.