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Smoothie Recipes

Foraged green smoothie with hemp seeds

Prep time 15 minutes
serves 2 people

Photography by Tracey Creed
Assisted by Amandine Paniagua
Recipe by Amandine Paniagua and Tracey Creed
Words by Tracey Creed

Published June 23 2019
Updated November 21 2019


1 cup yacon juice
2 frozen bananas
1 cup kale
small handful of fresh mint leaves
3 tbsp hemp seeds
1 inch (approximately. 3 cm) piece of fresh ginger, peeled and chopped
juice and zest of 1 lime


Add all ingredients to a blender and blend on high until thick and creamy. Enjoy!

A green smoothie is somewhat magical. So is caffeine.

Green smoothies can get repetitive, however living with the seasons, eating with the seasons provides an opportunity to support local growers and rediscover the beautiful, diverse produce your country or region has to offer - often not found in supermarkets. It was during a visit to my local community gardens, Kelmarna that I was offered yacons, and accepted even though I had no idea what I would do with them. Yacons are tubers, harvested in the depths of winter and not easily accessible, and so alternatively substitute with coconut water if you want to balance out the bitter greens and if not, filtered water.

Yacon contains high levels of inulin, a soluble non-digestible carbohydrate, scientifically referred to as oligosaccharides. And more than that, oligosaccharides are “prebiotics”, fermented by the microbiota in different parts of the intestine resulting in the production of short-chain fatty acids that allow specific changes, both in the composition and activity in the gut microflora. And this is powerful and magical and means everything and nothing until you understand these nondigestible oligosaccharides have been shown to increase the absorption of minerals, regulate hormones, digestion, the immune response and the ability to eliminate toxins. That and also in recent years increasing evidence has associated gut microbiota to both gastrointestinal and extragastrointestinal diseases, a linkage to anxiety and depression, both prevalent in society. And yet from a mainstream perspective, the narrative of gut health focused on fibre, and only more recently have definitions included oligosaccharides as dietary fibre as based on their physiological effects, not on their chemical measurement. Given that fibre intake globally is less than half the recommended levels, and so increasing fibre consumption for wellness, for disease prevention is a critical personal health goal as much as it is a public health goal.

And the hemp seeds. Industrial hemp is varieties of Cannabis Sativa which have tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) content generally below 0.35 per cent. And so hemp lacks the high concentration of THC that is responsible for the high from smoking marijuana, hemp is, however, nutrient dense. Hemp hearts are exceptionally high in two essential fatty acids, linoleic acid (omega-6) and alpha-linolenic acid (omega-3), and much like flax seeds, hemp seeds are one of the best vegan sources of omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids. And yet devoid of all logic were only confirmed safe to eat by the trans-Tasman Ministers government on 28 April 2018; approving changes to the Australia New Zealand Food Standards Code that would allow the sale of hemp seed as a food for human consumption.

As of November 12, 2018, amendments were made to the Misuse of Drugs (Industrial Hemp) Regulations 2006 and the Food Regulations 2015 that would provide for consistency between the Food Standards Code to allow low-tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) hemp seed to be sold as food. I had already been purchasing Pana Chocolate Hemp and Nib, technically prohibited and there was a sticker on the box that said it was for external or cosmetic use, I cannot remember exactly but it was ridiculous, hemp seeds classified as a controlled substance was ridiculous. That aside, when you have a lot going on but are still trying to eat well, this green smoothie with hemp seeds provides a kind of nourishment that can only be gained from such a concentration of nutrients - and this takes all of 10 minutes to make. That, when adjusted to suit your dietary preferences and health goals, can better help you achieve those. Whatever they are.

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