The Essential GreenSmoothieGirl Library . . . part 5

These are the last three of my general nutrition Top Shelf. (Then we go on to the best books about CLEANSING, the best books for PARENTS, and the best books on VEGETABLE GARDENING.)   Again, if you want to buy the book, click on it for a link to Amazon.


Steven Arlin’s Raw Power, for anyone who wants to build muscle mass or compete athletically  not eating animal flesh or dairy products.   I’m just a girl, not a true bodybuilder, but I love weight training, and this book long ago helped me  hold my own, strength-wise, with much-younger, carnivorous weightlifting friends.   Arlin has eaten a 100% raw vegan diet for 20 years and would be the biggest guy in most gyms’ free-weight rooms.   His recipes are interesting and unique. (p.s. Those of you blogging here recently about men who need to gain weight, Arlin eats a lot of raw olives, as well as avocadoes, nuts, and coconut.)


William Dufty’s The Sugar Blues was written in the 1950’s in a very provocative and engaging style.   This seminal book is your chance to get up the motivation to kick the sugar habit.   As many nutrition authors have stated, sugar is killing us.   And it’s more addictive than cocaine.   (I’m not telling you anything you don’t already know, am I?)   Even more fascinating is Dufty’s claim that the sugar industry sabotaged his efforts to publish his expose.  


Dr. Edward Howell’s Enzyme Nutrition: The Food Enzyme Concept is a 162-page abridgement of this medical doctor’s lifelong work that originally culminated in a 700-page book with 700 references.   It is an old book, published in 1985, reviewing all the scientific literature from the beginning of the 20th century pointing to enzymes being the most critical element that our diet is now deficient in, as we have strayed from raw foods.   It draws conclusions and postulates scientific theory long before the recent raw-food movement gained any traction. (I am going to do a blog series shortly on what we learn from the studies done on ENZYMES.)

The Essential GreenSmoothieGirl Library . . . part 4

Two more of my favorite books, with links to  obtain them.   As you can afford to own these books, you’re building your arsenal of tools to quit or massively reduce refined foods and animal products forever:

James and Colleen Simmons’ Original Fast Foods is so pure in its intent, to help others experience the profound health improvements that the formerly very ill Jim Simmons achieved when he undertook a whole-foods, plant-based diet.   The book is  intelligently written, and it contains tons of information and lots of good recipes at the end, all of them easy.  Self published and therefore more expensive than most books, you can occasionally get used copies on Amazon, but the author sells them at

Victoria Boutenko’s Green for Life documents how Boutenko, a long-time raw foodist, felt there was a missing link in her family’s nutrition, even as good as it was.   (They eliminated many chronic diseases from their lives when they went all raw 15 years ago.)   She undertook to study the diet of primates, since humans share 99.4% of our DNA with primates.   Of course, what she found is that they eat copiously of greens, a wide variety of them.

Boutenko asks the reader to undertake an experiment: to chew a mouthful of greens, and spit it out right before swallowing.   You’ll find it is simply torn up, not creamed and ready for digestion like it needs to be.   This is because over several generations of eating increasingly more refined foods, the human body has adapted by developing ever-narrower palates.   We no longer chew food to the extent that we need to to extract nutrition from denser foods like raw green vegetables, like primates with wide palates do.   The BlendTec Total Blender does that breakdown for you, in the green smoothie: all you have to do is “chew” as you drink it, to create saliva for digestion.

Greens like kale, collards, mustard greens, arugula, turnip greens, celery, spinach, dandelion greens, beet greens, and chard don’t end up on too many salad plates.   But they’re easy in green smoothies.   And, you don’t have to drizzle them with fattening, chemical-laden salad dressings to get them down, in a smoothie.

Best of all, in addition to the superior nutrition of dark leafy greens, Boutenko points out that kale fiber, for instance, can remove many times its own weight in toxins from the body.   She undertook to study a group of 30 people ranging from the morbidly obese in wheelchairs to people who already ate a fairly healthful diet: every one of the 30 reported excellent improvements in health, some of them very dramatic.   Many said they just wished they had more than a quart a day!   The top three health benefits were better digestion/elimination, more energy, and weight loss.

The Essential GreenSmoothieGirl Library . . . part 3


So, three more of my “top shelf” nutrition  books, with the links to pick them up on Amazon if you like:

Dr. Joel Furhman’s Eat to Live contains excellent data about a plant-based diet versus meat and processed foods from a courageous medical doctor willing to recommend vegetarian lifestyle changes instead of drugs and surgeries.   The books contain a limited number of simple recipes at the end.   Possibly because many of Furhman’s patients are cardiac patients, he is preoccupied with “low fat” in Eat to Live, which I think unnecessary and even possibly harmful for  some people, but it’s a small criticism of a great book.


John Robbins’ The Food Revolution (as well as his earlier work Diet for a New America), a pivotal book with a compassionate voice for the Earth, the animals we abuse raising them for food, and the people of the planet.   The son of Baskin Robbins’ founder, John abandoned his destiny to teach people instead about the virtues of a plant-based diet, and you will be forever changed by reading his book that comprehensively documents why we should eat lower on the food chain.   The author is precise with data, and he covers all the data points comprehensively, from cancer and heart disease risk, to genetically modified foods, to global warming, to animal cruelty.


Mike Anderson’s The Rave Diet & Lifestyle is fun and fairly quick to read, because it pulls no punches.   It’s hard hitting and unapologetic in its promotion of the plant-based diet.   It’s jam-packed with information (that duplicates Robbins, Fuhrman, and Campbell), well written, and contains lots of easy recipes at the end.   My only slight quibble with Anderson (and Fuhrman) is that I don’t think people in normal weight ranges need to be afraid of fats, the kind found in nuts, seeds, and unprocessed oils.

The Essential GreenSmoothieGirl Library . . . part 2

Here are three more of my picks from my Top Shelf–the most pivotal books on health and nutrition:

Dr. Robert O. Young and Shelley Young’s books and recipe books:   Sick and Tired, The pH Miracle, The pH Miracle for Weight Loss, Back to the House of Health I and II (containing many excellent recipes).   Dr. Young, with multiple PhDs, is the most credible authority on why an alkaline diet is the most important aspect of disease prevention and treatment.   His ace-in-the-hole over other authors is that his wife is a recipe developer and therefore gives practical help in addition to this century’s leading-edge nutrition theory.


Dr. Colin Campbell’s The China Study, the largest and most comprehensive nutrition study in history conducted jointly by Oxford and Cornell, the most empirical evidence ever gathered validating a plant-based diet.  


Colin Campbell is a professor of nutrition at Cornell University and has sat on the highest nutrition governing boards in the U.S.   He is the son of a cattle rancher and believed, in his early nutrition research, that he would find lack of protein to be the cause of childhood liver cancer in the Phillipines.

He found just the opposite: the wealthier children with good access to meat/milk were dying of liver cancer, not the poor children who could afford only plant food.   Time and again, Campbell and many other researchers discovered the same results: that in animals and humans, high consumption of animal protein causes all the modern Western diseases, including cancer, heart disease, autoimmune diseases, and much more.

The rodent studies are fascinating: two groups of mice are put on 5% animal protein pellets (casein, from milk) and 20% animal protein pellets, respectively.   That parallels an almost-vegan diet versus the typical American diet.   At the typical rodent lifespan, the 5% group were lean and healthy and the 20% group were full of cancerous tumors and many were dead (all would die early).


Even more fascinating is how the researchers could SWITCH the groups’ diets.   Lean, healthy rodents develop tumors and die when placed on the 20% animal protein diet, and formerly cancerous rodents lose weight, tumors are eliminated, and they live and thrive when placed on the 5% animal protein diet.   These studies were duplicated with the same results, by other researchers all over the globe.


Campbell went on to conduct the largest, most longitudinal, most comprehensive nutrition study in human beings, in history, yielding hundreds of statistically significant correlations.   He has been studying 6,500 people in China for about 30 years now.   Whether or not you completely eliminate animal foods from your diet, this book is so compelling that you will be motivated to make a commitment to a plant-based diet and share the message with others.

The Essential GreenSmoothieGirl Library . . . part 1

I’m writing brief reviews of my very favorite nutrition books, starting with my favorite RAW FOOD books.    I’m telling you about the best books  that you might want to buy, check out from the library, or at least know a little about.   These are by no means ALL the books I read on nutrition, just my favorites, what my friend Matthew calls The Top Shelf.   Just click on the book title to be taken to Amazon to buy  it.


For those wanting to eat more raw food:

Any of Victoria Boutenko’s books

Igor and Valya Boutenko, Eating Without Heating (easy, great recipes)

Renee Underkoffler’s Living Cuisine (caveat: recipes are delicious and gourmet, but time consuming)

Kenney and Melngailis’ Raw Food Real World (gourmet, some labor intensive recipes, some pretty easy, the authors are gorgeous, the perfect examples of what raw cuisine does for beauty)

Gabriel Cousins’ Rainbow Green Live-Food Cuisine

Jordan Maerin’s Raw Foods For Busy People (easy, machine-free recipes)

Jennifer Cornbleet’s Raw Food Made Easy for 1 or 2 People

Brigitte Mars’ Rawsome! (lots of good info in addition to recipes)

Feel free to share some of your favorite books, too, as we go along in this series!

another daily food log from a plant eater

I got a bunch of emails from the “lurkers” who never write on this blog, saying they like food logs, and MORE, PLEASE.   That’ll give me something to say if I ever have a day where I’m running low–but OMG I have so much to write about in the next month or two!!


This time of year, I love to go out for a run on a beautiful day–I get other work done in the earlier morning so I can get some sun at 10 or 11 a.m.   Today I ran on the jr. high track by my house, like usual, with the boys’ 7th grade P.E. class doing 4 laps at the end of my hour there.   I was on my 5th mile at that time, and I noticed that even the boys who ran the first two laps were walking, by their third lap.   So in their fourth and last lap, as I passed each group, I’d say, “Hey! You’re not going to let a 9th grader’s MOM beat you.  ARE you?”


The boys didn’t think it was that funny, really.   The P.E. teacher did, though.


Here’s my fuel today (leaving the kids’ breakfast and lunch out of it, since it’s usually the same):


Breakfast: Hot-Pink Smoothie (Jump-Start Basic recipe collection: beets, carrots, strawberries, cashews, coconut water, etc.)


Lunch:   (Believe it or not, I really am working on the lunch-ideas recipe collection, due to dozens of requests.   The PRESSURE!)   Put 2 cups of soaked almonds and 3 carrots through the Champion Juicer with the blank plate on.   (Five minutes, though the cleanup will take a little time, too.)   Tossed in some chopped basil, a small yellow squash and small onion, chopped, and 2 tsp. each sea salt and kelp.   Put lots of that Sprouted Almond Pate in a sprouted-wheat tortilla with some cucumber sticks.   (I put a little homemade dressing on it–any kind works–though you wouldn’t have to.)   Planned to have my green smoothie with it but wasn’t hungry after.   Ate the rest of my chocolate coconut-milk “frozen dessert” instead (see  my blog a couple days back).   Put the Almond Pate in the fridge to use for kids’ lunches, or dinner, tomorrow.


Dinner:   Made Spinach-Orzo Pasta Salad, one of my family’s favorites (recipe on this blog somewhere, and in Ch. 2).   I had the Tangy Dill Dressing (Ch. 3) in my fridge because I made a double batch a few days ago.   I’d cooked the whole-wheat orzo that morning while I made green smoothies.   I also added a bunch of diced yellow squash to the salad, even though it’s not in the recipe, because I have a TON of it in my fridge.   (I chopped some extra when I made lunch.)   We were finally all together after soccer practices, to eat, at 7:30 p.m.   I had my almost-quart of green smoothie, still, so I had just a bit of the salad with it, while everyone else had a heaping plate plus  corn on the cob.


And then I made Vanilla Pudding from Ch. 5 of 12 Steps–to get rid of more yellow squash.   Served it warm, yum!


I did spend well over an hour in the kitchen today, more than usual.   But part of that was washing/chopping about 100 pears to store in the freezer, and making Sprouted Curry Almonds for later. (I will post that recipe in an upcoming blog about how I’m letting you all in the raw almond group buy, if you’re in the U.S. or just across the Canadian border.)



I’m quite pleased that we ate 7 yellow squashes today (in three ways), which helped address the surplus in my fridge and garden.   My “raw” intake was at least 80 percent, and the only animal protein was a bit of Parmesan in the Spinach Orzo Salad.