Every single morning for the past week. It seems like an odd thing to say given that I’ve been pregnant or nursing for the past 2,335 days, but really it’s a good thing.
As you probably know, intense cleansing diets are not recommended for pregnant/nursing mothers. That’s because the toxins that are released by the body can be transferred to the baby via the bloodstream or breast milk.
On the other hand, it’s important to keep normal detox pathways functioning well so that things don’t build up. That’s why I adore wellness shots – aka freshly pressed juices and tonics. They’re something that I feel perfectly comfortable giving to my little ones and taking, nursing or not.
This turmeric version is my “go to” when I need a natural energy boost. It has an earthy flavor with a ginger zing, and it’s infused with compounds that many believe support gentle detoxification. One particular component of turmeric – curcumin – has been studied for it’s ability to prevent premature aging, reduce depression, manage arthritis and blood sugar, and act as a painkiller, among other things. (source) I haven’t found any studies regarding its effect on energy levels, but my experience is that it seems to help with alertness. Curcumin is a powerhouse with so many documented benefits – it’s been referenced in PubMed over 6,000 times!
No juicer? No problem!
About The Ingredients
In this tonic, I’ve paired turmeric with “superstar” ingredients that are known in folk – and modern – medicine for their benefits:
Ginger is a powerful antioxidant that increases circulation and reduces inflammation. (source) It has long been used in folk medicine to soothe nausea.
Coconut water is often referred to as “Nature’s Gatorade.” It contains 13 times more potassium – an electrolyte needed for proper cell function – than Gatorade, plus twice the amount of another electrolyte (sodium). (source) (This brand doesn’t have any additives/preservatives)
Lemon is rich in vitamin C, an antioxidant that is needed to manufacture glutathione, a tripeptide that assists with detoxification. Also, according “to Dr. Alexander F. Beddoe in Biological Ionization in Human Nutrition, the liver can make more enzymes out of fresh lemon juice than any other food element. Given more of the raw materials needed to function properly, the liver’s efficiency gets a boost from lemon consumption.” (source)
Raw honey is rich in minerals and easily digestible sugars, which signal “the body to down-regulate the production of stress hormones like cortisol. ” (source) It is also thought to boost the immune system, and certain types are even being studied for the potential ability to inhibit cancer proliferation. (source)
Unrefined sea salt contains 84 minerals that support adrenal function, help regulate blood volume and blood pressure, and assist with the delivery if nutrients to cells. It also “reduces adrenaline levels and supports overall metabolic health.” (source)
Black pepper improves the absorption of the turmeric.
How to optimize turmeric absorption
The active compound in turmeric – curcumin – is fat soluble, so I drink mine in the morning with fried eggs or something similar. Also, it is best absorbed when taken with fat and a old fashioned pepper, so I drink mine first thing in the morning with fried eggs or something similar. Also, adding “black pepper to turmeric or turmeric-spiced food enhances curcumin’s bioavailability by 1,000 times, due to black pepper’s hot property called piperine,” says nutritionist Stacy Kennedy. (source)
- 2 cups coconut water (This brand doesn't have any additives/preservatives)
- 2 inch knob fresh turmeric (1 oz weighed) OR 1/2 - 1 teaspoon dried turmeric
- 1 inch fresh ginger root (about 1/2 oz weighed)
- 1 lemon
- 1/4 teaspoon unrefined sea salt (where to buy unrefined salt)
- 1-2 tablespoons honey (where to buy honey)
- pinch of black pepper (optional)
- Place coconut water, turmeric and ginger root in a blender and give it a whir.
- When the turmeric/ginger is finely shredded, strain the liquid through a fine mesh sieve into a jar.
- 3, Add lemon juice, sea salt, and honey to taste. Serve, preferably with a food containing healthy fats and black pepper for enhanced absorption.