Biased Research Says Diet Soda Helps You Lose Weight

Biased research wants you to think diet soda helps you lose weight

Scientific studies: valid or not? Look at who pays for them!

In May of 2014, the journal Obesity published a “scientific” study saying that drinking diet sodas assists in weight loss.

The study’s authors say that diet soda might be even more effective than water at aiding weight loss. They looked at 303 men and women in a weight loss program. One group consumed 24 oz. of diet soda along with water, and the other group drank only water.

After 12 weeks, the researchers found that the diet soda group lost 4 pounds, on average, more than the water drinkers. So the conclusion was diet soda contributes to weight loss.

Love it? Me neither.scientific study: diet soda vs. water

Guess who paid for the study. Stop and think for a minute . . . take a guess.

Yep, it’s the American Beverage Association. (Their profits don’t come from water.)

If a scientific study sounds outlandish, always look for who paid for it. Biased research is everywhere and that information used to be hard to find. Now, disclosure regulation and the internet make it easier to know who is influencing the science.

You’re smarter than that. There’s never going to be a health benefit to diet soda. Drink water!

What’s so bad about whey protein?

shutterstock_265224311Steve, who calls himself “Blenda Guy,” writes me occasionally over the years. Last week he emailed, “I know you say whey protein is bad—why can’t I find anything on your site about this?”

Good question. Let me fix that now. Here’s why whey protein is a food I don’t buy, and I hope you don’t either:

First of all, many of my readers are familiar with The China Study done by Oxford and Cornell Universities. It’s the biggest piece of nutrition research ever undertaken. It all started in a lab, decades ago, where researchers discovered that rats and mice who ate casein (milk protein) experienced high rates of cancer, heart disease, and autoimmune disease. (Those who ate very little of this animal protein got virtually no cancer or other disease.)

shutterstock_203262013Whey used to not be considered food, not in manufacturing, anyway. It was a byproduct of dairy processing. Then the industry discovered they could gather that throwaway product, dry it, and market it as a nutrition product by touting its high protein content. It’s a manufacturing dream—repurposing a waste byproduct to increase profit on the same process! (Fluoride is a similar situation—it’s a poisonous byproduct of petrochemical processes, but then they discovered that it supposedly “prevents tooth decay.” Ah, but that’s another story for shutterstock_140334316another day.)

Through great marketing, and because the product has such low cost for the manufacturer, Americans now spend $1 billion a year on whey protein products!

But…..just because they’re selling us a lot of it doesn’t make it good for us!

Drinking cow’s milk means we’re getting high exposure to the steroids, hormones, and antibiotics fed to the cow. Now some marketers are differentiating themselves by claiming that their whey protein is from cows in New Zealand, or from cows that aren’t fed Rbst hormone, or from cows that are organic. Well, that’s certainly better than the “pure junk” processed, hormone/antibiotic/steroid-laden stuff most manufacturers sell!

But still. The China Study research didn’t use protein that was full of chemicals, either. It was merely processed, as all whey is. From the results of the studies, it is clear that processed whey clearly isn’t good for you even in the best of circumstances.

shutterstock_212356393It goes through many refining stages—sometimes up to 14 different refining processes—before it’s served up to you in a bag or a bar. It’s a highly refined food, and we already know that processing the heck out of any food causes the body to revolt in a variety of ways. Whey protein is devoid of fiber, low in most micronutrients, is quite acidic, and may cause the human body to react, as it does, to anything it doesn’t want by producing mucous to flush the foreign substance out. Over time, this mucousy situation causes an increasingly acidic climate in the body, prone to all types of disease.

Don’t get me wrong—I love protein. Who doesn’t want to build muscle mass? Who doesn’t want to burn fat? Who doesn’t want to slow down the impact on their blood sugar, decrease the insulin reaction, of, for instance, the fruit in their green smoothie?

I made my own protein for a while to do just that, and now we offer it to GSG readers. The reason I made it, in the first place, is that I didn’t like the products out there. Even the plant-based proteins are highly processed. So we made our own delicious nutrition protein that is raw, organic, plant-based, and made with whole foods. In other words, we don’t strip out the fiber by putting it SingleServePacket_ProteinRedthrSingleServePacket_ProteinChocougSingleServePacket_ProteinVanillah a variety of refining stages and diminishing it to “isolates” of the plant like most manufacturers do.

And just this month, we’ve made it into SINGLE SERVINGS at the request of people, like me, who travel a lot. Or who value convenience.

I put a handful of these in my shoulder bag to get through long flights and trips where I’m on the move. If I feel like a meal I’m eating is too high in carbs, I just add a packet of GSG Berry Protein to water, shake it up, and drink
it first. Even in plain water, it tastes great. It’s higher in micronutrients, as well as fiber, than other protein products because we don’t process the heck out of it or heat it.SingleServeProteinBox_Red

It’s made from vegetables and seeds. It’s sweetened lightly with herbal stevia. Very simple and clean. Every ingredient is certified organic.

And, now we have NATURAL protein with no flavoring or stevia. Our flavorings are non-GMO, which very few are. (Most manufacturers don’t even KNOW if their flavorings are non-GMO becauseNaturalProtein flavoring houses don’t have to disclose that. We use the only supplier that does!) But if you’re just adding the protein to green smoothies or baking with it, you’ll want to get some of our Natural Protein with no sweetener.

In July, all Single Serves are 20% off. Our gift to you to give it a try. Keep some in your purse or travel bag along with a blender bottle. This way, you’ll never have to be hungry and you’ll always get outstanding nutrition. (It’s not just our Protein Singles that are on sale—it’s our just-released Single Serves of our 3 Superfoods drink mixes. A fun tip: mix and match the proteins and superfoods for an easy, nutrient-dense meal!)
Robyn Openshaw

8 Foods You Think Are Healthy But They Aren’t!

I did a new video last week on 8 foods you may think are “healthy” but the evidence shows they AREN’T. Check it out. 

How many of these do YOU eat on a regular basis? If your answer is ZERO, you get 100 GreenSmoothieGirl points! 100 more if you drink your quart of green smoothie every day!

Have a wonderfully healthy week!

25 Ways Sugar Can Ruin Your Health

lick sugar habitDr. Nancy Appleton wrote a book in 2004 called “Lick the Sugar Habit,” with the ways that medical journals and other scientific publications have documented that sugar wrecks your health. She gives 78 ways, with an impressive references list. But I’ll share 25 with you here, in case you’re looking for some good reasons to stop eating high-fructose corn syrup and refined sugars! So often people wonder why they’re experiencing health problems and don’t connect it to what they’re eating.

  1. Sugar can suppress the immune system.
  2. Sugar can upset the body’s mineral balance.
  3. Sugar can cause hyperactivity, anxiety, concentration problems, and crankiness in children.
  4. Sugar can cause drowsiness and decreased activity in children.
  5. Sugar weakens the body’s defense against bacterial infections.
  6. Sugar damages the kidneys.
  7. Sugar increases harmful cholesterol and decreases good cholesterol.
  8. Sugar can cause copper, chromium, calcium, and magnesium deficiencies.
  9. Sugar can lead to cancer of the breast, ovaries, prostate, and rectum.
  10. Sugar can cause colon cancer, with especially high risk for women.
  11. Sugar can weaken eyesight.
  12. Sugar can cause hypoglycemia.
  13. Sugar can produce an acidic stomach.
  14. Sugar can increase risk of coronary heart disease.
  15. Sugar can lead to alcoholism.
  16. no sugarSugar can cause fluid retention.
  17. Sugar can cause headaches, including migraines.
  18. Sugar increases the risk of Alzheimer Disease.
  19. Sugar stresses the pancreas, causing damage.
  20. Sugar increases the amount of fat in the liver.
  21. Sugar can cause kidney stones.
  22. Sugar makes multiple sclerosis symptoms worse.
  23. Sugar can contribute to diabetes.
  24. Sugar can cause cataracts.

Now you’ve got some great reasons to stop eating refined sugars and stick to whole foods! Whole plant foods taste so much better when you stop eating sugar, too!

Six Reasons I Hate Calorie Counting and Don’t Do It

shutterstock_81459505 (Small)When I changed my diet to eating whole, plant-based foods, I said goodbye to calorie counting forever. By eating 60-80% raw, 95% whole, plant-based foods, I don’t need to count calories. I don’t think it’s a complete waste, my years of obsession with calories when I was young. Because it’s helpful to know what the foods are, that are very high in food energy but low in nutrition.

In all fairness, I’ll say that to get obesity under control, you could do WORSE than counting and restricting calories, for a period of time. It’s certainly better than doing nothing.

However, counting calories as a long-term approach to health doesn’t work. Here’s why:

  1. It’s unsustainable. Nobody does it long-term. Because it’s boring, tedious, and restrictive. It also leads to an unhealthy way of looking at food, creating fear through measurement.
  1. It has a tendency to cause you to eat packaged foods, which are almost always processed. Those are the foods that have calories marked on them. It’s a head game, though. They’re packaging small portions, or using fake foods to lower calories or fat. In fact, this can be self-defeating. Because the lowest calorie, highest-nutrition foods don’t come in packages at all.
  1. You can’t nail down how many calories you actually need, and software predictions of how many you need are inaccurate. Some days it’s many hundreds of calories higher than other days, depending on how many hours you were awake, or how much physical activity you did. I believe assigning a rigid number to any given day leads calorie-counters to feel shame, which affects their natural enjoyment for food and some their decision-making freedom.

What if your calorie-counting software says you can have only 1600 calories, so you TRY for that number. But unbeknownst to your software, you actually had a high caloric-needs day and THAT’S why you were so hungry and thus you “screwed up” and ate “too much?”

  1. Calorie counts on charts are inaccurate. A variety of factors affect how many calories are in any given piece of food, and there’s much you don’t know about the supply chain and the ingredients. You don’t know how much your chicken breast weighs. And if you’re actually WEIGHING it, well, my Reason #1 applies, above.

(Sometimes we have to ask ourselves if the insanities of the modern age just breed more insanities. Can you imagine cavemen counting calories? The whole outrage is simply an outgrowth of the processed food diet. If we eliminate processed food, we don’t have to invent silly counting programs.)

  1. “A calorie is a calorie is a calorie” is a lie! The Oxford-Cornell China Project is the biggest nutrition study in history. Studying 6,500 people in 65 counties of China, the researchers learned that plant eaters can eat 200 calories a day more than meat eaters, and stay thin!

high fiber foodsIt turns out, the body doesn’t even absorb all of the calories in foods high in fiber. That’s your greens, vegetables, fruits, whole grains, legumes, nuts and seeds. (The ones I’ve been teaching you to eat more of!) If your friend ate 500 calories less than you, but it was Skittles and a white-bread ham sandwich, but you actually ate more calories in that meal, but it was whole, raw, plant foods, you’re still the winner. Not only in your overall health, aging, and energy—but very possibly in weight maintenance as well!

  1. Counting calories creates a bunny trail, potentially keeping you ironically further from good health. People do programs like Weight Watchers, where junk food is totally endorsed, and all food is equal, but is just assigned points. I’d rather have you focus on eliminating or minimizing refined sugars, and not eating foods containing neurotoxins, and absolutely minimizing refined salt in the diet. All of these have a dramatic, documented effect on weight.

My conclusion? Profit industries won’t support this way of thinking:

But I’d rather maximize nutrient dense foods. Greens, vegetables, fruits, legumes, whole grains, nuts and seeds. I’d rather avoiding processed and animal foods. This matters far more than counting calories.

Know what kind of life your dinner lived

wholefoodsWhen I was in Houston, I saw this poster, showing me that if I eat their meat products, apparently they are lovingly cuddled before they are killed for my dinner.

It’s a new campaign I’ve seen at lots of WFM’s on my travels. The idea is, we treat animals better than the competition does.

This poster showing chicken as a cute pet doesn’t make me want to buy animal products from WFM. It makes me want to stick with eating plants.