Spring sunshine always gets me energized to spring clean the house and get organized. The change in seasons also makes me start thinking about cleaning up my diet. Our bodies have their own built-in detoxifying organs—the liver, especially. But as often happens, our not-so-great eating habits get the best of us.
There are all sorts of things to eat and drink that can leave us feeling a bit sluggish and in need of a recharge, especially over the holiday season. I decided to start drinking a green smoothie for breakfast every morning because it’s a great way to give my body a vitamin wake-up call for the day. Here’s a detox version of my daily smoothie to give your system a healthy boost.
Green Detox Smoothie
This detox smoothie is FULL of healthy, naturally detoxifying elements. Let’s take a look at each ingredient.
Cilantro contains phytonutrients, flavonoids, and active phenolic compounds. It helps your body get rid of heavy metals by binding to them and moving them out. Eating a diet rich in cilantro can also have great anti-inflammatory and digestive benefits [source].
It is a potent antioxidant that helps to protect the skin from the aging effects of UV light exposure [source] If you’re one of the thousands of people who can’t stand cilantro, try adding it in small amounts to pesto or smoothies to reap the benefits without being overwhelmed by the flavor.
Green tea is high in flavonoids (antioxidants) and is the best source of catechins. Catechins are a group of antioxidants that fight disease by stopping cell damage in its tracks. These guys are even more powerful than vitamins C and E.
Through these powerful compounds and others, green tea appears to lower the risk of certain kinds of cancer [source], treat chronic inflammatory diseases [source], and help prevent bone loss [source] and heart disease [source].
Cucumbers don’t get as much attention as they should—they are great sources of vitamin C, K, beta-carotene, and molybdenum. They are full of phytonutrients that provide antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, and anticancer benefits.
Pineapple is one of the best sources of vitamin C around. Just one 8-ounce serving provides 131% of the recommended daily value for vitamin C. It is also an excellent source of bromelain, an enzyme that aids in digestion [source]. Pineapple is also an excellent source of manganese, as well as several of the B vitamins.
Ginger has long been known to help with digestive troubles, but more recently, studies have shown that it also has many anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties [source]. Ginger contains gingerol, which can help reduce the symptoms of arthritis [source]. It also helps with circulation and gives your metabolism a big boost.
Avocados are a superfood, serving as an excellent source of numerous vitamins and minerals, including potassium, magnesium, and high amounts of anti-inflammatories and antioxidants [source]. The high healthy fat content in avocados helps the body to absorb the fat-soluble vitamins A, E, D, and K. Adding in some avocado each day will also help add fiber to your diet, which in turn helps with digestion [source].
Lemon juice is a natural diuretic with cleansing and detox properties [source]. It’s high in vitamin C, citric acid, magnesium, and calcium, all of which give the immune system a boost. Starting the day with lemon juice will help improve digestion. It works with the liver to cleanse the body, balance pH levels, and clear the skin.
Raw honey contains phytonutrients with antibacterial and antiviral properties that can boost the body’s immune system and help to fight illness [source]. It also contains trace minerals, enzymes, and antioxidants. Pasteurizing can destroy the benefits of honey, so it’s best to consume it in its raw state [source].
Raw honey is a source of the enzyme amylase, which helps the body to digest carbohydrates. Another benefit of honey, particularly local honey, is that it can help your immune system to combat spring allergies [source]. (Don’t give any type of honey to babies under 12 months of age, though, due to the risk of infant botulism [source].)
Spring Detox Smoothie
- 1 cup green tea chilled
- 1 cup loosely packed cilantro
- 1 cup loosely packed organic baby kale or another baby green
- 1 cup cucumber
- 1 cup pineapple
- juice of 1 lemon
- 1 tablespoon fresh ginger grated
- 1/2 avocado
- Place ingredients into a blender along with some ice and puree until smooth.
This article was medically reviewed by Dr. Gina Jansheski, a licensed, board-certified physician who has been practicing for more than 20 years. Learn more about Hello Glow’s medical reviewers here. As always, this is not personal medical advice, and we recommend that you talk with your doctor.581
David B. Johnson says
Since you don’t address the benefits of Kale in your blog (though they are many) I am wondering if they are really required, since I don’t know kale as a detoxifying agent. If it is only there for a colorant I would be inclined to leave it out. I certainly will use this recipe though. Could turmeric root be added as an anti-inflammatory? I find it beneficial for joint pain.
Sarah | Well and Full says
I am 100% with you on cucumbers – so underrated!
Jack @ BBQ Recipez says
Great pictures. I just pinned this to my list of detox smoothies.
Anthony Formosa says
The recipe doesn’t include a measurement for the raw honey.
YES! I was thinking the same thing!
How many calories does one serving have? Just curious
Glenda Cooper says
Thank you for all the information,
I don’t see honey in the ingredients, but i will try it.
I have Lipton green tea- Cranberry Pomegranate will that work or it has to be pure green tea? Does it have the same benefits?
I love my Nutribullet a lot. There are also smaller bullets that are less expensive. I find I use the large cup more than the small one that came with my Nutribullet. I start adding stuff and I end up with plenty to drink and plenty to put away in the freezer to mix with other things or use it as it is if I don’t have any fruits or vegetable to mix with it. I’m still experimenting with making a favorite smoothie. They can turn out so different depending on the ingredients you have on hand. If I didn’t have the Nutribullet, I’d possibly invest in the one Costco sells. The possibilities are endless with that one. As far as the recipe for the smoothie not listing Honey. I didn’t notice it until I started reading the comments. Jessica hit the nail on the head, add honey to the sweetness you would prefer. And if you write the recipe down for someone else be sure to add the honey :-)
ML Lewis says
There’s no honey listed in this recipe even though it’s featured above.
There is no mention of honey in the list ingredients, that’s green tea.
ML Lewis is correct. Raw honey is listed as an ingredient. The post says, “Let’s take a look at each ingredient.” Yet raw honey is not mentioned in the recipe itself.
Probably why my smoothie came out on the tart side! It’s definitely a very vibrant smoothie. I liked it but will add a little honey the next time.
I see raw honey listed maybe you might like to re-read
1 cup green tea, chilled
1 cup loosely packed cilantro
1 cup loosely packed organic baby kale (or another baby green)
1 cup cucumber
1 cup pineapple
juice of 1 lemon
1 tablespoon fresh ginger, grated
Pasted from above… Where do you see honey??
Cara Bridge says
you’d think it would be sweet enough with the pineapple but it isn’t. I had agave nectar so a couple squirts did the trick. Although I think honey better for you if you like it. I dont eat honey. Perhaps a healthier smoothie would be to supplement with pure maple syrup.
Click under “Read More ” above where you pasted the ingredients. It’s there.
Sounds like an amazing smoothie! But will it need a powerful blender? I’m afraid my old blender isn’t great and I’m in need of an upgrade. Thinking of getting the Oster VERSA. The Freshome seem to have given it very good ratings…
Do not buy the Versa. Mine is two yeas old. Not very strong, leaves small chunks unless I stop frequently and add more liquid.
Piper Celeste says
How many calories?
This looks good, but I would need a substitution for the pineapple and ginger (allergies). Any thoughts? It also seems a bit high in sugar with the pineapple for a diabetic, but I suppose one could adjust that so there isn’t a spike in blood sugars.
What a great smoothie combo! Tried this out and its delish x
Jennifer Boyle says
This smoothie sounds great. I just wanted to point out that the anti inflammatory benefits from Bromelain are actually found in the core of the pineapple. There may also be trace elements found in the fruit. You would actually have to eat quite a bit of the it to be helpful. Actually when supplementing with Bromelain it is best to use it on an empty stomach as it is a digestive enzyme and will simply help to digest your protein in your diet when eaten with food. Bromelain works as an anti inflammatory by digesting damaged tissue when taken on an empty stomach.
Marlene @ Jade and Fern says
This looks amazing! Love that punchy green color. Do you think it would still taste good and/or “work” with chamomile tea instead of green? I can’t have caffeine even in small amounts (migraines, grr).
Lindsey Johnson says
Yes totally! I actually use decaf green tea for that very reason. :) Great question!
Marlene @ Jade and Fern says
Sweet, thank you! :)
Stef Roschi says
I just made and drank this smoothie. SO delicious!
I have tried “green” smoothies before and found most of them bland and/or in edible. It felt like a chore to drink them.
I had to omit the cilantro because I didn’t have any (sadly. I LOVE cilantro) and added a TBS of black chia seeds after the blending process just for the added health benefit. The ginger adds the perfect amount of kick too. Yum!
The whole recipe ended up being 3 1/2 cups. I added 1 TBS of raw honey to the whole thing and I felt like that added the right amount of sweetness without being overpowering.
I don’t know how much others can drink, but this recipe is 2 servings to me. I can’t drink 3 1/2 cups of smoothie in one sitting!
Lindsey Johnson says
Ha! That is a lot, I suppose. I sip mine all morning long for breakfast and a mid-morning snack. So glad you enjoyed it!
Lorri Stephenson says
Your detox smoothie looks fabulous!
How much honey?
I love that you replaced a milk or juice with tea. Very smart, very creative!
Are you sure this smoothie is for detoxing? It looks way too yummy for a detox! ;)
Heide M. says
Sounds interesting, may give it a try.
That looks so good! I am hoping a little detox will help me kick this klingon cold I have. Thanks for the inspiration!