Vitamin E is something of an all-round good guy and is necessary for the proper function of many systems in the body including the cardiovascular, reproductive and immune systems. It helps to produce hormones called prostaglandins which are essential for proper regulation of the aforementioned systems because they are not naturally secreted in the body like other hormones, instead being created from a chemical reaction.
Another function of vitamin E is to protect cells from damage; this in turn leads nutritionists to believe that it can help protect against cardiovascular disease, cancer and neurodegenerative diseases. A deficiency in vitamin can result in reduced immune system functions as well as anaemia and nerve damage, which is why ensuring that it is part of a healthy diet is important.
The combination of ingredients in this smoothie provides a rich source of vitamin E and is likely to be popular with children and those with a sweet tooth thanks to the sweetness provided by the kiwifruit and mango. To make it, add all the ingredients to a blender and process until smooth.
These scrumptious nuts are full of nutrients and good fats that help to maintain a healthy heart. They are also a good source of vitamin E, with a 28g serving containing around 20% of the recommended daily allowance. As well as being good for the heart, hazelnuts provide health benefits such as enabling the body to use energy properly and maintaining healthy skin and hair.
Brazil nuts are high in fats but most of the fat content comes from monounsaturated fat, which is good news for your heart because they can help to lower levels of “bad” cholesterol whilst increasing levels of “good” cholesterol. A one cup serving of Brazil nuts contains as much as 38% of the recommended daily intake of vitamin E.
These cruciferous vegetables might not seem overly impressive but they pack a punch in the nutrition department, being a good source of a number of essential vitamins and omega 3 and 6 fatty acids. A one cup serving of collard greens also contains approximately 4% of the daily requirement of vitamin E. Some of the health benefits associated with consuming collard greens include improved sleep and mood, better management of diabetic symptoms and stronger bones.
By adding pumpkin seeds to this smoothie you are going to benefit from the omega 6 fatty acids they contain, as well as the very good levels of vitamin E – 100g of pumpkin seeds containing more than 200% of the daily requirement. The health benefits that are linked to the consumption of pumpkin seeds include a better quality of sleep, reduction in menopausal symptoms and a stronger immune system.
Avocado is another ingredient in this smoothie that is high in healthy fats that contribute towards maintaining a healthy heart and when blended into a smoothie, it provides a deliciously creamy texture to rival most dairy products. One cup of avocado provides around 16% of the daily requirement of vitamin E and some of the health benefits associated with it include better absorption of nutrients from other plant-based foods, maintaining good eye health and relieving symptoms of arthritis.
Spinach provides health benefits such as a reduced risk of cancer, better eyesight and a reduction of inflammation within the body. A one cup serving of spinach contains around 3% of the daily recommended intake of vitamin E, alongside a number of other beneficial vitamins and minerals.
Kiwifruit contains small amounts of vitamin E that help to boost the overall levels in this smoothie. More importantly, kiwifruit has a number of health benefits associated with it including helping to protect your skin from damage caused by the sun, lowering blood pressure, promoting better sleep and a reducing your risk of experiencing a stroke.
The levels of vitamin E in almond milk vary depending on whether it is commercially produced or homemade. If it is the former, then vitamin E will usually have been added in the fortifying process. With the latter this does not happen and therefore homemade almond milk tends to have only trace amounts of vitamin E at best. Commercially produced almond milk will normally have around 15% of the daily requirement of vitamin E per 100ml, although this varies between brands. Health benefits associated with consuming almond milk include improved cardiovascular health, protection against cancer and better weight management because it tends to be low in calories.
Adding frozen mango to this smoothie provides a lovely ice cream texture that children will go mad for! One cup of mango contains around 9% of the daily allowance of vitamin E, as well as plenty of other vitamins, and some of the health benefits of consuming this exotic fruit include the prevention of asthma, protection against cancer, particularly breast and colon cancer, and a reduced risk of developing cardiovascular disease.
Banana, grapes, sunflower seeds, almonds, kiwifruit, pumpkin seeds and almond milk smoothie
Blueberries, coconut water, kiwifruit, cucumber, lemon and pear smoothie
Green apple, water, carrot, grapes, cucumber and ginger smoothie