Here’s a great smoothie for iron (and calcium). The dark, leafy greens in this recipe are masked by the ripe, flavorful fruit. I did detect a subtle “green” flavor, but it’s just a hint and mostly from the fresh-tasting Italian parsley. If you’d like to mask the green flavor further, simply add an extra banana or a cup of fresh pineapple. A handful of raspberries or strawberries would enhance the flavor further while adding even more iron! I really liked this recipe as-is, though.
If you are wondering why I call this smoothie recipe “Iron 101″, it’s because it has 101% of your daily value of iron. A significant amount of iron comes from the fresh parsley which has 47% of your recommended daily allowance (RDA) of iron alone. *
Pregnant women should not consume parsley. Parsley contains an essential oil called apiole. Apiole is a kidney stimulant. Because this essential oil can stimulate uterine contractions, pregnant women should avoid eating large quantities of it.
Iron 101 Smoothie Recipe
- 1 ripe mango, peeled and pitted
- 2 large ripe bananas, peeled
- 3 cups kale
- 1 cup fresh, Italian parsley (or use curly parsley)
- 8 ounces of filtered water
Start by adding the liquid to your blender (I use a Vitamix), followed by the soft fruit. Add the greens to your blender last. Blend on high for 30 seconds or until the smoothie is creamy.
Calcium: 32% RDA (Recommended Daily Allowance)
Iron: 101% RDA *
Vitamin A: 1257% RDA
Vitamin C: 447% RDA
This smoothie is also a rich source of folate, vitamins B1 – B6, vitamin E, vitamin K, copper, magnesium, manganese, phosphorus, and potassium.
Serving Size: One. (This recipe makes a large, 32-ounce smoothie. It is a meal-replacement smoothie and not a snack. I recommend drinking half right away and the other half about 30 minutes later. If it is too much for you, store leftovers in a sealed container in the refrigerator for up to 24 hours.)
* Special Note for Women and Vegetarians/Vegans: This green smoothie provides 8 milligrams (mg) or 101% of the recommended dietary iron intake for adult men and post menopausal women. Adult, pre-menopausal women need 18mg of iron per day. Vegetarians and vegans also need a higher dietary intake of iron due to the difference in bio-availability of animal-sourced and plant-sourced iron. An adult male following a vegetarian diet should consume about 14 mg of iron daily while vegetarian, pre-menopausal women should strive for 33 mg daily. These figures are based on recommendations set in 2000 by the Institute of Medicine at the National Academy of Sciences.
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Tracy Russell is the creator of the Green Smoothie Health & Weight Loss Program and founder of Incredible Smoothies. She is passionate about helping people improve their health with green smoothies and a whole foods lifestyle.