I love starting the day with a smoothie and do so regularly. The mornings in my household are busy and often I put my smoothie in an insulated thermos to take with me, as I prefer to eat when I'm not feeling rushed. Smoothies are a great breakfast option for people who don't wake up very hungry but would still benefit from an easy-to-digest, protein-rich start to the day.
I frequently get feedback from clients that smoothies help their digestive function by promoting regularity and reducing bloating. This gave me the idea to create a smoothie directly aimed at promoting optimum digestive function. I contacted Gelpro Australia to request a sample of their Collagen Hydrosolate to try in this recipe. I had previously been using imported gelatin powder in my smoothies and was keen to source a high-quality substitute from within Australia (for both personal use and professional recommendations).
Collagen powders are becoming very popular as a dairy-free protein alternative and I was keen to try one! I had heard they were water-soluble, which make them well suited to smoothies. Collagen powder provides the building blocks for new collagen synthesis throughout the body. This assists the structure and function of a wide range of tissues including skin, joints, hair, nails, muscles and the digestive system lining. That's right, it could theoretically be the newest addition to your skincare routine too (taken internally, that is). But back to digestion... The active ingredients in this recipe that are beneficial for gut health are as follows:
- COLLAGEN POWDER - High in the amino acids glycine, lysine and proline which are needed to support rapid cellular turnover such as that occurring in the cells of the digestive lining.
- PINEAPPLE - Contains the active ingredient bromelian which acts as a protein digesting enzyme and anti-inflammatory in the digestive system.
- COCONUT MILK - Contains lauric acid, a compound also present in breastmilk. It's antimicrobial, anti-fungal and anti-viral actions are beneficial to the balance of organisms in the digestive tract.
- PROBIOTICS - These beneficial bacteria exert a wide range of actions including modulating immune function and influencing the health of the cells lining the digestive tract.
- PSYLLIUM - This soluble-fibre is also a prebiotic. This means it provides valuable fuel to beneficial bacteria and encourages their growth in your digestive system.
PINEAPPLE & COCONUT GUT HEALTH SMOOTHIE
1/2 cup frozen pineapple
1/2 cup coconut milk
1/2 cup rice or almond milk
1/4 cup ice
1/2 tsp probiotic powder
1 Tbsp gelatin powder *
1 tsp psyllium husks
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 tsp maple syrup (optional)
Place all ingredients in a high-speed blender and blend for 1 minute.
Serve & enjoy. Makes 1 serve.
* I used Peptipro Collagen Hydrolysate from www.gelatinaustralia.com.au in this recipe. It is a cold-water soluble form of gelatin which is perfect for adding to smoothies. It is neutral in flavour and can also be added to other cold drinks such as water or fresh juice, or even to hot drinks like tea and coffee.