Whiz up a batch of delicious mango smoothie loaded with health-promoting fruits, natural-electrolyte coconut water, and healing turmeric. It’s just the thing after a bout of strenuous exercise or to sip on instead of breakfast on a busy day.
I can’t believe I’m doing it.
I’m doing the 30-Day Hot Yoga Challenge again – and I’m already on day 18! I’m not sure what possessed me to sign up for it. June is such a busy month for me. Sometimes I’m not sure whether I’m coming or going, and it’s all I can do to think ahead one day at a time (because if I think of all the things I have on my schedule over the longer term, I just want to run and hide under a pile of blankets and hope nobody finds me until the month is over).
I know everyone is just as busy with their own lives, too. Why do we take on so much? What possesses us to think we can handle it all?
In addition to substitute teaching quite a few days lately, I’ve had the year-end wind-up for German School, with writing report cards for my little class of 14 kindergarten students, planning a bunch of social gatherings (some large, some small), working on two large writing projects, and trying to stay on top of the overwhelming amount of yard and garden work all piling up at this time of year when you live on an acreage with two large gardens. Never mind all the cooking involved when your family has multiple food allergies (and of course, they can’t all be allergic to the same things – that would be too easy).
So, I guess I thought I didn’t have enough to do and somewhat stupidly signed up to go to yoga every day for a whole month – which, when you live out of town usually means a two to three hour commitment by the time I shower afterwards and stop off on my way home to run an errand or two.
But you know what – the yoga is for me; to refill the well, and I’m starting to feel great. I usually try to make it to hot yoga a couple times a week, but now that I’m going every day something magical is starting to happen. The first week every muscle aches and I feel pain in places I didn’t even know I could. All my joints creak and seize up if I sit too long. Then the second week I feel like I can stand up a bit straighter and turn my head a bit further back when I’m shoulder-checking as I back up the car. Now this third week in, I am walking with a bounce in my step, my chronic lower back pain is easing up, and I feel like I must be at least a little bit taller than before. It’s easier to pull my shoulders back and I feel lighter and limber. Wow!
I can hardly wait to go to yoga each day. I love that feeling of sweating profusely in a hot, humid room. The sweat tickles as it runs in rivulets down my face, arms and body. Even the tops of my feet sweat! I keep telling myself how great it is that I’m flushing out toxins – I figure it must be as good for me as having a sauna every day. I notice I can bend a few millimetres deeper than I could the day before, and I can hold that twisting pose for a bit longer than last week. When I fold over my bent leg in the pigeon pose, I can now feel my belly brushing the ground. I may not be as flexible as I was in my 20’s, and maybe I’ll never be able to fold this body to touch my nose to my knees again, but it’s all baby steps and so satisfying.
After hot yoga, I’m thirsty, so I make myself a shake to sip on when I’m done – either my melon, spinach and apple Great Green Smoothie, or this delectable Magic Mango Smoothie. Sweet banana and luscious mango form the base, yogurt adds protein, coconut water naturally replenishes electrolytes lost from sweating, and the turmeric is a healing natural anti-inflammatory spice that helps repair those hard-working muscles that have been pushed to their limits. Turmeric has a mild earthy flavour that is slightly noticeable, but the lemon, honey, and vanilla help it to blend in. I love the flavour of turmeric, but maybe it’s because my mind knows how good it is for me.
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Kitchen Frau Notes: If using both frozen banana and mango, the smoothie may be quite thick and need a bit more coconut water to thin it out.
Try to find a brand of coconut water that has no additives and no added sugar; that is just 100% coconut water.
Superstore sells 600gm bags of frozen mango chunks. If fresh mangoes aren’t in season, use half a bag of the frozen mango in this recipe, or buy mangoes when in season, cube them, freeze them on cookie sheets, then keep them in ziptop bags in the freezer to use.
See how to cut up a mango here.
Magic Mango Smoothie
- 2 cups (10 oz/300gms) diced mango, fresh or frozen
- 1 large ripe banana, fresh or frozen
- 1 cup (240ml) coconut water (unsweetened)
- ½ cup (120ml) plain yogurt (or soft tofu, soaked cashews*, or coconut yogurt for vegan or dairy-free option)
- 1 – 2 tablespoons lemon or lime juice, to taste
- 1 tablespoon honey (or maple syrup for vegan option), optional
- ½ teaspoon turmeric
- ¼ teaspoon vanilla
Place all ingredients into a blender and process until smooth. Start with one tablespoon lemon or lime juice, taste, then add more if you’d like it tangier. It depends on how sweet your mango and banana are.
*If using soaked cashews (soak ½ cup cashews for 20 minutes in filtered water and drain), you may need to add a bit more coconut water if the smoothie is too thick.
Makes 3½ cups (850ml).
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