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My life has changed recently. I am having so much more fun. It's a delightful kind of fun that has been unexpected. I am not going to wild parties, not dancing in the dark, not even traveling to a foreign country.

I am in the kitchen with my new blender and it is rocking my world! One of the most invaluable products I have ever purchased is a blender.

In the world of kitchen equipment, the quality and type of equipment in your kitchen can make all the difference in ease of food preparation. When food preparation is stream-lined and efficient, it can change how many items you are willing to make from scratch. Scratch food preparation provides an opportunity to make recipes lower in fat & sugar and higher in potassium and fiber.

Various blender brands with high-speed capabilities will thoroughly puree foods. When blending fruits or vegetables, the leaves, stem and peel of the fruit can be used. This retains a majority of the nutrients. Incorporating more fruits and vegetables into recipes such as soups, smoothies and even desserts increases the amount of phytonutrients consumed. This gives a boost to our immune system.

Dietary Guidelines for Americans recommend that about half of our plate should now be filled with fruits and vegetables. For a 2,000-calorie level diet this equates to 2.5 cup-equivalents of vegetables and 2 cup-equivalents of fruits each day. It's simple to get three or more servings of fruits and vegetables by making a smoothie. Smoothies can be made in advance and stored in an air tight container to grab in the morning "on the go" or consumed for an after dinner snack.

We have some delicious smoothie recipes that can help you squeeze more fruits and vegetables into your diet!

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