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Smoothie Ideas from Down Under

I’m here in Melbourne, Australia for the Australian Open and I’m so excited to be competing! The Open got off to a wonderful start, and I was thrilled to win my first match.  

One of my secrets to staying strong and competitive is my diet. I follow a mostly plant-based diet, having started for health reasons after I was diagnosed with an autoimmune disease, Sjogrens Syndrome, back in 2011. I knew I’d have to change my diet in order to maintain my performance on the court, and then I fell in love with the idea of eating healthy. Eating healthy not only helps alleviate the symptoms of my autoimmune disease, it also makes me feel like I'm doing the right thing, which makes me feel more positive.

Of course, whether you are eating a plant-based diet or a taking a different approach, you need to enjoy what you are eating. For instance, I really enjoy smoothies. In fact, I love them so much, I own my own Jamba Juice stores! And, I love them so much that when I’m on the road, Down Under or anywhere around the world, I bring along my NutriBullet blender, so I can make healthy smoothies wherever I am.

One of the fun things about smoothies is their bright vibrant colors. I make orange smoothies with orange juice, and green smoothies with spinach and kale. Another fun smoothie color is purple. Purple smoothies look and taste great and purple foods can have lots of health benefits including helping to protect memory, slow the aging process and protect your heart, plus protect against Alzheimer's, Multiple Sclerosis and Parkinson's disease.

At Jamba Juice, we have a purple smoothie made with almond milk, blueberries and chopped dates. Jamba Juice's berry beet smoothie is loaded with lots of healthy veggies including beets, carrots, broccoli, spinach and kale, plus fruits like blueberries, strawberries and mangos. 


Here’s a great recipe to start with:
1 cup cold-pressed apple juice (substitute fresh if available )
1 cup frozen blueberries (fresh can be used, but if so, use 1 cup of ice cubes to make the drink immediately cold)
1 cup red Anjou pear, peeled, cored and sliced
1/2 cup low-fat strawberry or plain yogurt
1/2 cup frozen sliced strawberries (substitute fresh if preferred)
1/2 cup loosely packed curly kale, stems removed
2 tablespoons unfiltered organic flaxseed oil
juice of 1/2 large lemon
Combine all ingredients in a blender and puree until smooth.


Here’s to a Happy and Healthy 2017!

- Venus