In these uber-chaotic times, when stressors of economic uncertainty, food insecurity, social distancing, the expanding global pandemic, and media bombardment of incessant doom & gloom abound, our immune system is being challenged. Why? When we’re stressed, the immune system’s ability to fight off foreign invaders such as bacteria, viruses, parasites, and cancer cells is reduced. Our immunity shields are lowered thus we’re more susceptible to serious illnesses. We’re often in a steady state of fight or flight, adrenaline is pumping all too often, we’re deeply fatigued, and our body’s stores of stress-reducing nutrients such as vitamins B and C, and calming minerals such potassium, calcium, and magnesium are being consumed at an accelerated rate in order to help us cope. Additionally, the stress hormone corticosteroid can suppress the effectiveness of the immune system by lowering the number of lymphocytes—white blood cells that are part of our immune defense and act to recognize antigens, produce antibodies, and destroy cells that could cause damage.
To help shore up our immune system and strengthen its protective shields, we need to get ample, restful sleep, fresh air, regular exercise, sunshine (lots of vitamin D), laughter (it’s great medicine), lots of self-care (warm, fragrant baths, aromatherapy massage, foot rubs, meditation time, etc.), plus consume a diet that’s loaded with vital nutrients. So, with this blog, I’m going to share a couple of recipes that I use to nutritionally boost my immune system . . . in a most delicious way! Raw juice shots are small, uncomplicated, quick-to-make, nutrition-packed, energy elixirs, usually a half-cup of liquid or less per serving, that deliver a rapid shot of power and quickly digested vitamins, minerals, potent antioxidants, and other phytochemicals. They’re the perfect afternoon pick-me-up for both adults and children.
If you enjoy these recipes, additional raw shot elixirs are available in my best-selling book, Raw Energy In A Glass: 126 Nutrition-Packed Smoothies, Green Drinks, and Other Satisfying Raw Beverages to Boost Your Well-Being.
Try more recipes from Stephanie's book:
Morning Power Shot Recipe
This recipe—a reader favorite—is my version of a spicy, ginger-flavored lemonade. Ginger root is a pungent, moderately hot herb that enhances energy by increasing circulation throughout the body. Combined with a pinch of cayenne and vitamin C-rich lemon juice, this blend enlivens the senses; provides a rosy glow to the complexion; warms the body from head to toe; helps relieve indigestion, constipation, and motion sickness; clears sinus and respiratory congestion; eases the pain of arthritis; and even freshens breath. I guarantee this tasty, powerful shot will give you a bigger energy boost than you’d get from a shot of espresso – sans the caffeine jitters!
- 1/2 cup purified water
- 2 teaspoons ginger root, peeled, very finely minced
- 2 teaspoons raw honey (more if you want it sweeter)
- Pinch of cayenne pepper powder
To Make The Power Shot:
- Heat the water to just shy of a simmer in a very small saucepan. Remove from heat.
- Put the lemon juice, ginger root, honey, and cayenne in a medium-size mug and then pour in the hot water. Stir to blend and allow the mixture to steep for a few minutes. The longer it steeps, the stronger and more potent the ginger becomes.
- Drink quickly, ginger bits and all, when the juice blend is comfortably warm. Feel the hot energy coursing through your veins!
A good source of: antioxidants, vitamin C, potassium, folate, and natural sugars
Yield: 1 serving
Deep Purple Vibrations Shot Recipe
A feel-good, look-good drink if there ever was one! Simply made using only dark purple, antioxidant-rich grapes blended with tart lime juice, it will quench your thirst, lift your energy, and, with abundant natural sugars, satisfy a raging sweet tooth. Most kids love this drink, especially if you give it a goofy name, like Purple Monster Juice. Beats a box of pasteurized juice any day!
Highly alkaline (stress makes your body acidic) and energetically cooling, grapes will help the body to eliminate excess heat and acid. Enjoyed on a regular basis, the anti-inflammatory action will help soothe achy joints, too.
- 1 cup dark purple, seedless grapes
- 1 tablespoon fresh lime juice
- Pinch of sea salt (optional)
To Make The Power Shot:
- Place the grapes, lime juice, and salt, if desired, in a high-powered blender and blend on high until smooth and frothy, about 30 seconds.
- Serve immediately, complete with all of the fiber, as I do, or strain through a mesh strainer to yield a more clarified beverage. Mix with a splash of carbonated water to make a natural, yummy sparkling soda!
A good source of: antioxidants galore, plus vitamin C, iron, potassium, phosphorus, magnesium, boron, natural sugars, and fiber (if you don’t strain it out)
Yield: 2 small servings
Recipes excerpted from, Raw Energy In A Glass: 126 Nutrition-Packed Smoothies, Green Drinks, and Other Satisfying Raw Beverages to Boost Your Well-Being, (c2014 by Stephanie Tourles). Used with permission from Storey Publishing.