Apple Cinnamon Oat Smoothie for Digestion

This dairy-free smoothie tastes like apple pie but is high in fiber, antioxidants, and may aid digestion.

As we transition to the cooler fall and winter months, an ice-cold smoothie for breakfast may not be as appealing anymore. Cooler foods may also be more challenging to digest. Avoiding frozen ingredients and adding particular spices to a smoothie, like cinnamon and ginger, and minerals, like magnesium, may assist digestion.

Apple Cinnamon Oat Smoothie for Digestion

Cinnamon is anti-inflammatory and loaded with antioxidants. One study examined the antioxidant activity of 26 spices and determined that cinnamon was one of the most powerful, along with clove and oregano (even more so than garlic!). Following close behind these spices were sage, thyme, and rosemary. In addition, cinnamon has been shown to regulate blood sugar levels and reduce levels of ‘bad’ cholesterol while increasing our ‘good’ cholesterol. 

How Magnesium Can Help Digestion

Adding magnesium to smoothies may improve digestion by activating digestive enzymes and relaxing the intestinal wall muscles. Magnesium can also ease constipation by increasing the water content of stools. 

Apple Cinnamon Oat Smoothie for Digestion

Ingredients

  • 1 cup cashew milk (or any nut milk)
  • 1 large organic apple or 2 small apples, chopped
  • 1 cup oats
  • 1 tbsp cinnamon
  • 1 chunk of fresh ginger
  • 1 tbsp ground flax seed
  • 1 scoop Natural Calm magnesium citrate powder

Add all ingredients to a blender and give it a whirl. Enjoy!

In health, Dr. Dylan Cutler, Ph.D.

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Apple Cinnamon Oat Smoothie for Digestion

References

Shan B, Cai YZ, Sun M, Corke H. Antioxidant capacity of 26 spice extracts and characterization of their phenolic constituents. Journal of agricultural and food chemistry. 2005 Oct 5;53(20):7749-59.

Allen RW, Schwartzman E, Baker WL, Coleman CI, Phung OJ. Cinnamon use in type 2 diabetes: an updated systematic review and meta-analysis. The Annals of Family Medicine. 2013 Sep 1;11(5):452-9.

Ou JZ, Cottrell JJ, Ha N, Pillai N, Yao CK, Berean KJ, Ward SA, Grando D, Muir JG, Harrison CJ, Wijesiriwardana U. Potential of in vivo real-time gastric gas profiling: a pilot evaluation of heat-stress and modulating dietary cinnamon effect in an animal model. Scientific reports. 2016 Sep 16;6:33387.

Wu KL, Rayner CK, Chuah SK, Changchien CS, Lu SN, Chiu YC, Chiu KW, Lee CM. Effects of ginger on gastric emptying and motility in healthy humans. European journal of gastroenterology & hepatology. 2008 May 1;20(5):436-40.

Hu ML, Rayner CK, Wu KL, Chuah SK, Tai WC, Chou YP, Chiu YC, Chiu KW, Hu TH. Effect of ginger on gastric motility and symptoms of functional dyspepsia. World journal of gastroenterology: WJG. 2011 Jan 7;17(1):105.

This article is sponsored by Natural Calm Canada.

Cinnamon Cashew Blender Muffins (Low-GI)

Simple, healthy muffins free of dairy, refined sugars, oil and gluten.

I consider muffins a pseudo-health food because while they’re often disguised as nutritious, in reality, they can be packed with saturated or trans fats, sugar and sodium. Some other misleading “healthy” snacks that come to mind are store-bought granola (often loaded with sugar and hydrogenated oils!) and protein bars (some contain high fructose corn syrup and hydrogenated oils resembling a candy bar!). The power of making our own meals and snacks is in knowing exactly what we are putting into our bodies. Rolled oats and cinnamon can help balance blood sugar and manage cholesterol levels, while cashews are a great source of heart-healthy fats and antioxidants. To sweeten these muffins I used dates and a small amount of maple syrup (which I talked about in a past dessert recipe).

Cinnamon cashew blender muffins

Now, if baking doesn’t seem to fit in your busy schedule (I hear you!), you’re going to love these muffins because a blender does all the work! So toss everything in, relax while they bake, and have healthy snacks prepared for the whole week.

Cinnamon Cashew Blender Muffins (Low-Glycemic, Gluten-Free)

Ingredients:
  • 3 cups rolled oats
  • 3/4 cup raw cashews
  • 1/8 cup maple syrup
  • 1/4 cup chopped dates
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 2 cups water
  • cinnamon to sprinkle on top
  • optional: very ripe banana, berries
Cinnamon Cashew Blender Muffins (Low-Glycemic, Gluten-Free)
How to:
  1. Preheat oven to 375 deg F.
  2. Combine all ingredients into a blender (if adding berries, stir in after blending). Since my blender isn’t high-powered, I blend a couple ingredients at a time.
  3. Fill muffin liners to the brim with batter. Note: healthy, oil-free muffins like these often stick to the liners. Some tricks are to use silicon liners instead of paper, and to place a cookie sheet with water in it on the rack below the one with your muffins. PS. I would love to hear your tricks!
  4. Sprinkle with cinnamon and swirl into the batter.
  5. Cook in oven for 20-22 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean.
  6. Let muffins cool before removing from liners.

Cinnamon Cashew Blender Muffins (Low-Glycemic, Gluten-Free)

PCOS Powers:
  • rolled oats have a low glycemic load and are high in fiber, may help maintain blood sugar levels, and contain tryptophan which boosts serotonin levels for better sleep and a stable mood
  • raw cashews may help lower blood pressure, “bad” cholesterol, and improve insulin and androgen levels in women with PCOS (as a tree nut)
  • cinnamon may help balance glucose levels, lower cholesterol and decrease triglycerides in blood
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Cinnamon cashew blender muffins (gluten-free, vegan, low-glycemic)

What tricks do you have for making non-stick, healthy muffins?

My Matcha Life

Brain-Boosting Super Seed Oatmeal

Give your oatmeal a boost with seeds high in omega-3s which are important for the health of our brain, heart, liver and bones.

Oatmeal provides a simple, nourishing breakfast on its own, but we can easily up our oatmeal game with the help of some super seeds. Chia, hemp and flax seeds are all plant-based sources of protein, fiber and omega-3 polyunsaturated fats. Studies have found that omega-3s may:

Any type of oats (steel cut, rolled, or quick) are great, however, steel cut are the least processed and lowest in glycemic load. This keeps blood sugar levels stable and helps us stay energized. I hope you enjoy the great combination of flavors and the numerous health benefits of this gooey, aromatic bowl of super seed oatmeal.

Super Seed Oatmeal

Ingredients:
  • 1/2-3/4 cup steel cut oats
  • 2 cups water or nut milk
  • 1/2-1 tbsp hemp seeds
  • 1/2-1 tbsp chia seeds
  • 1/2-1 tbsp ground flax seeds
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • fruit toppings
  • nut butter
Long Version (steel cut oats):
  1. Bring water to a boil.
  2. Add steel cut oats to the boiling water on the stove, turn down temperature to low. Let oats cook for 10 min.
  3. Stir in hemp hearts, chia seeds, flax seeds, and cinnamon (optional: splash of almond milk).
  4. Wait for the remaining liquid to soak up.
  5. Top with fruit and a healthy fat, like nut butter.
Quick Version (rolled or Quick oats):
  1. Add equal parts oats (rolled or quick) and nut milk together and stir.
  2. Stir in hemp hearts, chia seeds, flax seeds and cinnamon.
  3. Cover and place in fridge overnight.
  4. In morning, add toppings and dig in!

Super Seed Cinnamon Oatmeal

PCOS Powers:
  • steel cut oats = low glycemic load, high in fiber, maintains blood sugar levels, and contains tryptophan which boosts serotonin levels for better sleep and a stable mood
  • chia seeds = high in omega 3s which can help decrease high testosterone and improve egg quality
  • hemp hearts = high in protein, fibre, and essential fatty acids (omega 3, 6 & 9) which may improve cholesterol profiles, may reduce inflammation
  • flax seeds = may help lower cholesterol and blood pressure, contain lignans which may increase sex hormone-binding globulin and therefore lower blood testosterone levels
  • cinnamon = may help balance glucose levels, lower cholesterol, and decrease triglycerides in blood

More ways to use super seeds:

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My Matcha Life