Well, here it is…my Chocolate Blueberry Smoothie. You may not know it but you need this in your life. It may be a healthy breakfast smoothie but it’s more like drinking dark chocolate that has forgotten to be bitter. I was making my regular blueberry smoothie one morning and felt like a change so I chucked in a little cocoa powder and WOW, this beauty was born. We’ve been drinking these smoothies for a few months now and they are definitely a regular in my house, partly because they are so moreish, partly because they are so good for you. You see, last summer Dan was forty. FORTY. I remember my Dad reaching that milestone and now we’re there.
I hadn’t realised this, but as a little gift the NHS give you an invite for a general health check at this stage in your life. It’s not quite called an old people’s health check but you know that that’s what they’re getting at. Anyway, Dan duly went along for his. Weight and height were recorded and BMI calculated, blood pressure was noted and bloods were taken. End of appointment one.
The next day we boarded a plane to Switzerland where we spent the week consuming breakfast pastries, ice cream and copious amounts of cheese. It was probably a good job that the cholesterol check had already been carried out.
On our return from holiday Dan duly went to get his blood test results and arrived home to report that he apparently has a 3.4% chance of departing this life due to a heart attack in the next ten years (this is supposedly good, by the way!). I’m not entirely sure how accurate this result could be considering the minimal amount of information used to draw this conclusion. However, who am I to argue?
Most other results came in within the normal levels but, and don’t ask me how, they can apparently tell of Dan’s love for fresh, crusty white bread, pancakes on Saturday morning and bowl of cereal for supper. And, despite the fact that my go to cooking and salad dressing oil is olive oil, there is also a significant lack of good cholesterol floating around in his blood stream. And this it seems is not good. If Dan continues along this vein, said the mature, professional nurse sitting in front of him, his % chance of departing this life prematurely will no longer be 3.4!
As the main cook in our house I felt it my duty to play my part in the necessary diet change. First, a little education was needed. I had a hunt around on the internet and spent a small amount of time learning about the glycaemic index and glycaemic load of foods which, to be honest, I hadn’t considered much previously. I also refreshed my knowledge on good cholesterol and had a little re-read about antioxidants.
And my conclusion? We needed a breakfast smoothie (well, actually a few – more to follow over the next few months). This chocolate blueberry smoothie ticks loads of good health boxes as it delivers antioxidants, good cholesterol, calcium, fibre and lots of vital vitamins and minerals along the way, whilst setting us up for the day.
Quick. Simple. Something worth getting out of bed for.
Chocolate Blueberry Smoothie
- 250 ml milk
- 75 g blueberries (fresh or frozen)
- 2 teaspoons slightly rounded cashew nut butter
- 1 tablespoon chia seeds
- 1½ teaspoons cocoa powder
- ½ teaspoon agave or 1 teaspoon sugar
- ¼ teaspoon natural vanilla extract
- Place all the ingredients in a blender or smoothie maker and whizz until smooth. Serve immediately.