Skin-On Produce and Green Smoothies

By Jennifer Thompson

Fruit adds sweetness to green smoothies. However, you might be wondering whether you should peel your fruit before sticking it in the blender. The outer skins of fruits and vegetables contain valuable minerals and are especially high in silicon. Known as the “beauty mineral,” silicon is the best mineral for strong nails and hair and glowing skin.

Silicon is also an essential mineral, along with calcium, for the growth and maintenance of joints and bones. A deficiency in silicon can result in the following:

  • Thinning hair

  • Brittle nails

  • Formation of wrinkles

  • General aging of the skin

That’s a pretty good advertisement to start eating those apple skins! But wait; not all fruit skins are equal.

Fruits that aren’t organic may be sprayed with pesticides and/or coated in wax to give them a shiny, fresh look. The wax coating actually seals in the pesticides, making them virtually impossible to remove.

The other problem with not peeling your fruits, organic or not, is that you can miss a bruised or rotten part of the fruit. Have you ever cut an apple or pear in half and discovered that everything was brown and mushy inside? That’s no fun, and it certainly doesn’t taste good or make your smoothie nutritious.

Regardless of whether you peel, always cut your fruits before putting them in the blender; that way, you can slice away any bad parts and leave only the fresh bits to blend.

Certain fruits such as papaya, mango, pineapple, avocado, banana, melon, grapefruit, orange, and lemon have a thick, bitter, or inedible skin, and you don’t want those peels in a smoothie. Adding small amounts of lemon rind for taste is okay, but don’t use the whole lemon skin.

Apples, pears, peaches, apricots, plums, grapes, kiwis, cucumbers, and tomatoes all have edible skins that you can add to your smoothie with the fruit, even if they’re not organic. Just wash everything well first. Organic with the skin is always the best choice because those fruits have no dangerous pesticides or wax coating; they can even contain more minerals than non-organic fruits because they’re grown in higher quality, more nutrient-dense soil.