Why do I get constipated or not lose weight on green smoothies? Part 1 of 2

This is Chris, the GSG webmaster. Robyn has been in Michigan for a week and I have been posting her blogs. I accidentally posted part 2 yesterday without part 1. I remedy that here:

Dear GreenSmoothieGirl: I’m drinking green smoothies, and you said they were low calorie, high nutrition! Why have I GAINED two pounds in the last two weeks?

Answer: Most people quickly LOSE weight on green smoothies, and most people’s digestion improves, in my research. (Discussed in depth in The Green Smoothies Diet.) Logic bears that out, since drinking so much volume, of only 200 calories, bumps out other food that is invariably higher calorie. And green smoothies are so high in fiber that digestion should improve. Keeping all other things constant, simple physics DEMAND that you are increasing your metabolism in many ways, you are burning fat, and you WILL lose weight. Note that the sentence began, “KEEPING ALL OTHER THINGS CONSTANT.”

(I don’t want to insult anyone’s intelligence, so forgive me for this. Hopefully it goes without saying, that if you’re increasing your consumption of junk food, because you feel that your new green smoothie habit justifies it, that could be why you’re not losing weight. That’s all, on that topic.)

However, as 175 people in my initial study radically changed their nutrition with the green smoothie habit, these were fairly common reactions within the 18% who experienced a negative initial reaction:

Bloating, constipation, not losing weight

Why does this happen? First of all, anytime you change anything, there are always a number of consequences (some more noticeable than others). Hundreds of things are changing in your body. It is receiving nutrition it has needed from the beginning, but as you begin supplying it, you may notice fits and starts, hiccups and burps and discomfort.

All the new fiber is supposed to act as a broom, sweeping the intestines and colon. However, what happens when, in addition to lots of that, the colon begins loosening and releasing hardened material that has perhaps been there a long time?

The colon can get backed up. There’s over 30 feet of intestines and colon, and often when you’ve been eating the S.A.D., peristaltic action has slowed and become very sluggish. You can perk it up over time by clearing it out and feeding it high-fiber food at EVERY meal and snack.

Your kidneys can get backed up. (Do this for a couple of decades and you’ll need a kidney transplant.) Your liver can get backed up. (Ever seen anyone whose eyeballs are yellow?) The lymph system can get backed up. (Your neck has big, bulging, painful nodes.) The tonsils get backed up. (Doctors say, take them out! They are, in fact, yet another organ of elimination, little understood.)

The heart and arteries can get backed up (this is what ambulances were built for). The skin gets backed up (four letters: Z-I-T-S). Need I say more? We could go on for paragraphs. The parts of your body that aren’t holding things together, and building/repairing, and locomoting you? They’re detoxing you.

I know I’m grossly oversimplifying. But your colon is the most obvious, simple organ of elimination, and the toxic fuel you choose is 90% of why every single one of these organs gets weak, and gets sluggish, and THEN…..when the miracle happens that you change fuels, they get backed up.

This can happen within days of starting green smoothies, or at any point down the line. You didn’t get in the shape you’re in, in two weeks, and it’s going to take you longer than two weeks to truly “clean house.”

Read part 2 here

 

Why do I get constipated or not lose weight on green smoothies? Part 2 of 2

So, “cleansing reactions” can happen two months or six months or even six years later. They can even happen—on a much milder scale—when your engine is very clean because you’ve completely transitioned to a high-raw diet and eat 5% or less processed food and animal proteins.

Personal example. I drank 4 oz. of wheat grass juice (very potent and medicinal, and 4 oz. is a LOT) every day, for two months recently. (Until my 4-wheeling accident where I wasn’t able to drive for 10 days.) I noticed my skin breaking out during the second week of that period, a very common detox reaction.

A couple of weeks later, one day I had 4 oz. in the morning and then 4 oz. again at night, and I got a brain fog and slight headache. (I never get headaches!) That’s my body trying to process so much elimination that occurs through many channels, when it gets some power fuel to work with.

EVERYONE needs to detox. You breathe polluted air, you experience stress—both of which have physical byproducts in the body—and nobody’s diet is “perfect.” My brain fog was mild and lasted about an hour. (The skin breakout lasted a few days.)

The longer you’ve been eating the S.A.D., and the worse your diet, and the weaker your inherited constitution, the more likely you are to have ROUGH detoxing.

If a “cleansing reaction” lasts longer than 2 weeks, generally you may be looking at a food sensitivity. These issues are now epidemic because of so many ways we degenerate the gut. I think the top of the list is probably genetically modified grains causing so many people to be celiac or have lesser gluten intolerances. (Monsanto is now breeding pesticides into SEEDS and using the legal system to bully farmers out of stockpiling non-genetically-modified, or “heirloom,” seeds.)

Mark my words: this epidemic is going to continue to explode until MOST people have major gut issues. Many people who think they’re fine NOW will be diagnosed later.

The way out is to stop attacking our own pancreas, thyroid, digestive tract, kidneys, liver, heart, and blood pathways with chemicals and fake foods. The way out is to return to eating what people ate since the dawn of time, before these diseases began just three generations ago. Grow our own food, support local organic co-ops.

But far too much animal protein and too little plant fiber has surely contributed to much of the Irritable Bowel Syndrome, Crohn’s Disease, Leaky Gut, Fibromyalgia, Chronic Fatigue, Epstein Barr and other fatigue and degenerative gut issues affecting so many of us.

You know little kids with Crohn’s? Me too. We’re passing down our degenerated DNA to our babies.

Aahh, I’ve gone sideways. What do you do if you’re not losing weight, if you’re constipated, even though you’re drinking green smoothies?

The answers? Rest. Drink a lot more water. Slow your program down for a brief period of time. Add some fresh ginger to your smoothies. Before you get out of bed in the morning, deeply massage your transverse colon (preferably with a tennis ball, but your hands will work), starting lower right in your pelvis, straight up to the level of your navel, across to a couple inches inside the left hipbone, and down.

And grin and bear it, knowing your body is doing good, necessary work, you ARE burning fat, and the discomfort or plateau in weight loss is temporary.

First and foremost, stay the course and remember, this too shall pass. It is an immutable law that when you replace high-calorie foods with low-calorie, high-nutrition foods (green smoothies!), weight loss will follow if you are overweight.

If you’re still not losing weight, get a FULL BLOOD PANEL workup at a hormone clinic specializing in bio-identical hormones (rather than synthetic). Even if your doctor told you that your T3 was in the “normal” range. You may need a broader-spectrum blood test. You can even start the most natural way, taking a couple of kelp tablets a day (nourishing the thyroid with iodine). The bioidenticals are cheaper and work better anyway, and they cover T1, T2, T3, and T4, broader spectrum hormones, from a natural (dessicated animal glandular) source rather than giving you a synthetic drug with its inevitable side effects. If your thyroid isn’t working, with its complex interplay of hormones, you can’t metabolize food effectively and lose weight.

(Actually look at TOMORROW’S blog for part 1, we messed that up while I’ve been out of town…..)

A green smoothie testimonial I received recently

Green smoothies have just changed my life! I have been drinking at least a quart everyday for 6 weeks now. Sometimes I drink more, but always drink at least a quart. My kids also drink them with me every single day. I have even converted my husband who at first stuck his nose up at them. I have noticed so many good things happen. I have lost 17.5 lbs. I have more energy, therfore, am exercising more.

My moods are so much more even, I get stressed and irritated less. I sleep better and feel more refreshed in the morning. My chronic constipation has gone away. I have suffered with constipation since I was a child. I have less desire to eat foods that are unhealthy. Once your body starts getting the good stuff and then you stick some bad stuff in there with it…it lets you know!!!

My PMS symptoms have all but disappeared. My sex drive has increased. I just feel really good. My whole family has really seen a lot of healthy body responses come from adding green smoothies to our diets everyday. I have converted several people and get asked questions each time I am out with my green smoothie (which is a lot). I proudly and excitedly share our experiences and give them some things to try in their families!

(Submitted without a name–anyone want to take credit for this?)

Green Smoothie Testimonials, part 14

I’ve been drinking a quart of green smoothies daily for about a year now, with a few exceptions. When I fail to drink them for a few days (too busy, need to go to the store, etc.), I find that the first sip of the next smoothie is so welcome, so delicious, so satisfying.

My children drink them because I put them in front of them. I gave them a pint at first, then my 11 y.o. son struggled to get them down. I let him drink half a pint for a while, until he got used to them. Finally, he asked if he still had to drink the small glass (half a pint), or if he could have a full glass now–YES! He also enjoys drinking them in front of friends and telling what’s in it. That took a couple of weeks, probably.

Now, they drink a pint, and sometimes whatever else is left over after I have mine. They like lots of strawberries in theirs, and fresh peaches, when they’re in season. I have converted several friends to drinking green smoothies, too. (Them: “What is that you’re drinking?” Me: “A green smoothie.” Them: “What’s in it?” Me: “Want a taste?” or “Would you like the recipe?”)

–Janelle B.

I purchased my Blendtec Total Blender at Costco during a demo at the store. The demo guy recommended I go online to GreenSmoothieGirl.com for great recipes and support. Since I have been drinking the green smoothie, my bowels are more regular than they have ever been. I was diagnosed with Irritable Bowel Syndrome and now I do not have constipation. It is the most wonderful feeling to be regular! Also, since adding the dark leafy green vegetables, I have been able to avoid colds from grandkids and friends. I can honestly say I am much healthier. I never miss a day and it has been about 4 months. Thank You, Robyn.

–Barbara A.

Research Results: Green Smoothies Change Lives [part 2 of 2]

Other positive health benefits reported by survey respondents include these:

3 people said: Hyperthyroid condition improved (reduced or gone off meds)

2 people said: Seasonal allergies gone or decreased

2 people said: Reduced asthma symptoms

7 people said: Arthritis symptoms/pain gone or reduced

2 people said: Migraines gone or reduced by 80 percent

2 people said: acne improved or gone

2 people said: eczema or dry skin cleared

Decreased blood pressure

No more hypertension

Was able to go off cholesterol meds

Was able to go off Prilosec

Haven’t gotten sick in a year like I always do

Moles disappeared

Deep facial wrinkles “barely noticeable”

Less nasal congestion

Lump on leg getting smaller

Liver spots fading

Tendonitis gone

Muscle soreness gone

Hypoglycemia improved

No more bloating, gas, indigestion, constipation

Avoided a hysterectomy, lifelong menstrual problems returned to normal

Easier to breastfeed

Don’t sunburn any more

Grey hair returned to original dark color

Depression symptoms gone

Lifelong bad breath gone in two weeks

Ended coffee addiction

Just feel better

 

The risks of a new green smoothie habit are limited to an 18.5 percent chance of a short-term, uncomfortable cleansing reaction.   The top six benefits that people experience when starting a green smoothie habit are, in order, more energy, improved digestion, fewer cravings for sweets and processed food, a more positive/stable mood, improved skin, and weight loss.

 

It’s hard to look at this data without being compelled to give green smoothies a try!