My mangled face: a postscript about coconut oil

So I told you about my close encounter with concrete on a run last week.   I told you that day, at a GS class I did, one of the event organizers dabbed lavender oil on my battered face that made the swelling go way down, quickly.   Then I went home and smeared coconut oil on the wounds on my chin, lip, and cheekbone several times a day. That kept the scabs soft and helped me not worry about infection. The scabs were gone three days later and the wounds barely noticeable.

(Craig did entertain himself saying things in public like, “Do that one more time and I’ll smack you AGAIN!” And I was glad to have the end of the comments from my male friends about finding the violent boyfriend who did that and avenging the deed with a hubcap and a cheap bottle of wine.)

But while the scabs have virtually disappeared on my face, the similar-sized scabs on my knees are still ugly looking and going nowhere four days later.   This is despite that the knee scabs had not been repeatedly splitting open, like the scabs on my lip did, every time I laughed.   (I laugh a LOT.)

Okay, so the only difference, which is remarkable, is the application of coconut oil (and originally, lavender oil).   I didn’t care about my knees, whereas I did care about my face.   I took my parents to lunch today, and was telling my mom about this.   She said she wishes she had known her whole life what a wonderful moisturizer and anti-bacterial organic, cold-pressed coconut oil is–she feels she could look younger and would have saved a lot of money!   Like me, she loves it and it’s the ONLY moisturizer she uses. It’s whole foods for the skin. (Why do we buy all these products full of refined oils, at best, and chemicals, at worst?)

She loves that by applying it, it soaks in and is used as NUTRITION no differently than if you ate it.   I put so much of it on, topically, that I don’t always concern myself about getting some in FOOD every day.

Anytime I see a child with eczema, I give the parents coconut oil.   The year we began using it topically as well as internally (as food, replacing other oils, such as in baking and sautéing), eczema disappeared on me and my kids.   Ditto my circulation problems (cold hands and feet) during the winter.

Here’s a photo of me and Craig three days after my accident, 50% healed–not so bad, huh?

Craig and Robyn 003

Spreading the word!

Email from a reader:

 

I just got off the phone with my mom and had some great news! Several weeks ago, I went to my step-sisters pool with my kids and mom. Of course, I toted along my big jars full of green smoothie. I got the usually, “What the heck is that?” comment. I told my step-sister all about them, gave her some simple suggestions and let her taste mine. She loved it. What I didn’t know is that now she is hooked!!! She and her oldest son have become green smoothie drinkers! She started telling my step-dad all about it and how much better they feel even after just a few days. Now, he wants to know more. The best thing is, my once unbelieving mom, is now extrememly interested as well. I would love to see her on start drinking green smoothies. She is a coffee/soda drinker, her diet is poor, she gets constant migraines, has fibromyalgia, and multitudes of other problems.

People think I am crazy when I start singing the praises of this super simple drink, but their minds are quickly changed when they feel it for themselves.

I have an older neighbor that lives next door. We talk occassionally and she tells me what’s going on in her life and health, she has not been well lately. She told me she was trying to lose about 15 lbs since her doctor told her she had to. She has been drinking the sugar free Slim Fast drinks. I asked her if I could come over and share with her a way that was much more healthy and more likely to help her regain her health and ideal weight. She agreed. I went over today and she is just so excited. Her son is to have his tonsels burned out!!???!!! because of bad allergies. Plus, he is about 50 lbs over weight. Her grandson and daughter-in-law are both very over weight as well. She wants to get all the information she can so she can share it with them too!

I love that I can freely share this love with some many people and see so many changed by such a simple drink and natural substance that we all take for granted!

One question I have…my neighbor is diabetic. How will the fruit smoothies affect her blood sugar? It’s hard for someone to drink a veggie based green smoothie when they are first introduced to the green smoothie concept. It’s easier to give them the sweeter drinks and let them work up to the stronger greens and no fruit green smoothies. Any advice on this would be greatly appreciated!

By the way, I have been religiously drinking my green smoothies everyday for 6 weeks. I drink from one to three quarts everyday. I eat a mostly a vegan diet and very high raw. I have lost 17.5 lbs. I have gained incredible energy. I can now run a mile and sometimes more, which I do every other day. My skin has cleared. My PMS is virtually gone, to the point that my cycle snuck up on me last month. My moods have leveled out and I don’t have severe mood swings anymore. I am so much more calm and things just don’t bother me like they used to. I haven’t gotten sick even though I have been around a lot of sickness. I am just amazed at the difference a whole foods diet is making in my life! :-)

Thanks yall,
Kari

an interesting green smoothie testimonial

I have lots more testimonials I haven’t posted yet.   I’ve blogged in the past about the personality changes and mood improvements that people experience when they toss the refined foods and start eating whole, mostly-raw plant food.   Here’s an interesting testimonial from a reader named Grace that came in this morning through the questionnaire on the site:

“Green smoothies have changed my life in so many ways. At first, I got caught up in the physical changes and although very important, I am now seeing other transformations taking place on mental and emotional levels as well, which I had not anticipated. I feel more focused, have smoother energy, am less irritable, and am noticing the ‘beauty’ of nature, people, things. . .

I used to resist everything–subway ride to and from work, incoming calls (work in an office), bills, deadlines, etc. Nowadays, I just feel more appreciative and have changed the way I look at life, drawing strength from things that inspire passion and dream. Instead of resisting, I’ve learned that by treating things differently (keeping an open heart and a positive attitude with much gratitude), I end up feeling differently about them as well. Sometimes the smallest shift can take you in a different direction. And yes, all this from green smoothies!!!

But to keep myself inspired, I will share that my skin is glowing, the shape of my face is much more refined, I’ve lost weight, my eyes are clearer, hair shinier. I feel that my breathing has enhanced–can take in more air. I have to attribute these changes to eating a plant based diet which includes daily green smoothies. Greens are powerful detoxifiers and sources of great nourishment. And fruit, well what can I say about fruit? They get such a bad rap but I think they are the most cleansing foods on the planet. Maybe that’s why they’re frowned upon and viewed as the culprit for candida, high blood sugar, weight gain, etc.–they ‘stir’ things up and work hard to push toxins and sludge out of the body. These cleansing reactions although unpleasant, are necessary. You will feel worse before you feel better. And I think that’s the point. At least, that’s been my experience. Fruits and greens together, I consider them a match made in heaven!!”

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!

Research results: Green Smoothies Change Lives [part 1 of 2]

The results of my poll of 175 green smoothie drinkers yielded some interesting results that suggest quite definitively that it’s a 10-minute habit worth adopting!

The vast majority, or 97 percent, said green smoothies noticeably improved their health or quality of life.

Only 18.5 percent had uncomfortable, short-term cleansing reactions.   The following symptoms were reported:

 

Headaches

Skin breakouts

Diarrhea

Nausea

Bloating

Intestinal gas

Cramps

Constipation

Vertigo

Dizziness

Fainting

Lethargy or weakness

Runny nose

Mucous in the back of the throat

Liver pain

Mood swings

Depression

Emotional crisis

 

Very exciting to me is the fact that 84 percent of those drinking green smoothies are so enthusiastic about the positive health benefits that they’ve  taught others about  the habit!

These are the positive health effects people experience, listed in order of their frequency among the research respondents:

85.4 percent experience more energy.

79.2 percent experience improved digestion (more regular and/or complete bowel movements, no straining, soft/formed stool, etc.).

 

65 percent experience fewer cravings for sweets and processed foods.

 

52.3 percent experience a more positive, stable mood.

 

51 percent experience an improvement in skin tone, or fewer blemishes.

 

50 percent experience weight loss.   The average reported pounds lost is 17.3 lbs.!

(Keep in mind when considering this very impressive statistic that some of the respondents had been drinking green smoothies only 30 days, and some of them did not have any weight to lose.)

 

48.5 percent experience an increased desire to exercise.

 

44.6 percent experience improved sleep (need less of it, decreased insomnia, more alert in the mornings, etc.).

 

41.5 percent feel less stressed out.

 

40 percent experience blood sugar stabilization.

 

39 percent experience people telling them they look better.

 

35 percent say their fingernails are stronger or grow faster.

 

26 percent say their hair is shinier or their dandruff gone.

 

18.5 percent experience a decrease in PMS symptoms.   (Consider that some of the respondents in the survey are not females of menstruating age.)

 

17 percent report an improved sex drive.

More data tomorrow.

Green Smoothie Testimonials, Part 2

By following Robyn’s recommendation, which I could not believe at first but made a decision to give it a try, I lost weight without trying, and my knees and shoulders stopped aching. My blood lipid profile has improved. My cholesterol level has gone from 201 down to 157. Yes, I said 157. My doctor had me go to a different lab to have the test confirmed.

 

My complexion and skin tone have improved as well. I also had a problem with dry skin. I used coconut oil as recommended by Robyn, and my rash that I had on my ankles and chin cleared up completely. I had gone to the doctor and had obtained two different medications and the only thing that did any good, and in fact cleared it up, was the coconut oil. Thank you,

 

–Sandra T. from California.

 

Green smoothies saved me from facing yet another diet, thinking about hypnosis for weight loss, hating the way I looked, and everything else that comes along with being overweight. Green smoothies are my answer to staying away from the doctor. I no longer have cravings and feel satisfied for hours after drinking my awesome smoothies. My husband is loving them too and has lost 40 pounds. Children love green smoothies. I appreciate all the information Robyn has shared. Thank you so much Robyn!

 

–A. Fambrough

 

 

The green smoothie idea has worked well for me whereas juicing did not. Anyone who has juiced knows the time commitment it takes for juicing and clean-up as well as the volume of veggies it takes to make just 2-3 eight-ounce juice drinks per day. When I read about green smoothies, it was immediately appealing to me.   I bought a BlendTec right away. In only 14 months of use, the counter on my machine is already over 1,600!

 

I average 5 out of 7 days for making smoothies for myself and my husband, who will drink one anytime it’s available in the fridge. One benefit of green smoothies is helping me to be more alkaline.

 

–Linda C.

 

What my research says about how green smoothies change lives!

I once blogged 20 different astonishing ways my health improved when I began drinking green smoothies and eating a whole-foods diet.   Here it is: What Changed, When We Switched To Whole Foods, Part 2

But I wanted to get more scientific when I wrote The Green Smoothies Diet and find out precisely what a newbie can expect!

The results of my poll of 175 regular green smoothie drinkers yielded some interesting results that suggest quite definitively that it’s a 10-minute habit worth adopting!   To participate in the questionnaire, one had to be drinking green smoothies for at least 30 days, a pint a day for 4 days a week.   Many were drinking more, up to my recommended 1 quart daily.

The vast majority, or 97 percent, said green smoothies noticeably improved their health or quality of life.   Wow!

Very exciting to me is the fact that 84 percent of those drinking green smoothies are so enthusiastic about the positive health benefits that they’ve told others about or taught them the habit!

These are the positive health effects people experience, listed in order of their frequency among the research respondents:

85.4 percent experience more energy.

79.2 percent experience improved digestion (more regular and/or complete bowel movements, no straining, soft/formed stool, etc.).

65 percent experience fewer cravings for sweets and processed foods.

52.3 percent experience a more positive, stable mood.

51 percent experience an improvement in skin tone, or fewer blemishes

50 percent experience weight loss.   The average reported pounds lost is 17.3 lbs.!

(Keep in mind when considering this very impressive statistic that some of the respondents had been drinking green smoothies only 30 days, and some of them did not have any weight to lose!

48.5 percent experience an increased desire to exercise.

44.6 percent experience improved sleep (need less of it, decreased insomnia, more alert in the mornings, etc.).

41.5 percent feel less stressed out.

40 percent experience blood sugar stabilization.

39 percent experience people telling them they look better.

35 percent say their fingernails are stronger or grow faster.

26 percent say their hair is shinier or their dandruff gone.

18.5 percent experience a decrease in PMS symptoms.   (Consider that some of the respondents in the survey are not females of menstruating age.)

17 percent report an improved sex drive.

Other positive health benefits reported by survey respondents include these:

7 people said: Arthritis symptoms/pain gone or reduced

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

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

2 people said: Gray hair returned to original color

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

Gallstones gone

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 that include the following symptoms:

headaches, skin breakouts, diarrhea, nausea, bloating, intestinal gas, cramps, constipation, vertigo, dizziness, fainting, lethargy or weakness, runny nose, mucous in the back of the throat, liver pain, mood swings, depression, emotional crisis

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!

Jump in with us and let us know here what your experience is after 30 days:

 

To Your Health,

–Robyn Openshaw

p.s.   Join us in 12 Steps to Whole Foods to get on the path to achieve all these health benefits. Step 1 is all about the why and how of green smoothies!

extra ingredients for green smoothies [part 6 of 8]

Raw wheat germ

Raw wheat germ is extremely high in Vitamin E and the B vitamins, so this is a great ingredient for women with PMS or menopausal symptoms, and eating it prevents some birth defects, according to research.   It will help you achieve glossy hair, pretty skin, and strong nails.   It adds a nutty flavor and thickness to the smoothie, so you’ll want to add extra water when using this ingredient.   It’s a great way to add fiber to your diet to promote colonic peristalsis and avoid constipation .

However, raw wheat germ goes rancid very quickly.   Buy it in bulk at your health food store if you trust that the store has good product turnover and buys fresh product oven.   Taste it before using, and if it has an even slightly rancid taste, don’t use it.   Store it in the fridge for no more than a couple of weeks, preferably in an airtight container to slow oxidation.

Avocado

This adds extremely nutritious fats to your smoothie, which aids the body in utilizing the minerals in greens.   I highly recommend adding it to smoothies for babies and children, too, or anyone who might need to gain weight.   (It is not a food that will promote weight gain, but because of its high monounsaturated fat content, it is higher in calories than most green smoothie ingredients.)   Avocado is one of the most perfect first foods for a baby.   It’s extraordinarily high in lutein, a phytonutrient that promotes strong eyesight and retards degenerative conditions of the eye.   Other research shows that even short-term avocado consumption decreases total and LDL cholesterol.

Maca root

Maca is a very trendy product from the ancient Peruvian food, from a root related to turnips and radishes, because it has been linked by research to endocrine health and a healthy libido.   It is also said to improve energy levels throughout the day.   So the aphrodisiac is used in South America to boost performance in a variety of areas.

natural beauty tips

Dear GreenSmoothieGirl: Thanks for your blog entry today about what you eat in a day, and when.   I had been wondering about that.   You should also let us know your beauty routine.   Do you use special facial cleaners or just simple products?   I’m wondering if you use Basic H.   Also, do you use expensive natural makeup, or just the drugstore brands?   Thanks for whatever info you want to share.

 

Answer:    This will probably be a disappointment, since I’m not sure I have any genius ideas.   I’m all about what I can do with the least amount of time, with few chemicals, especially sodium laureth sulfate (SLS), propylene glycol (PG), and mineral oil, which are probably the worst three of the bad ingredients in cosmetics and soap.   My main beauty tip is to let your pores be unclogged with makeup as much as possible!   I use organic, unrefined coconut oil all over my face at night, and on my lips several times a day.   I wash my face with any unscented, simple facial bar.

 

I don’t wear foundation.   I wear drugstore eyeliner, mascara, blush, and lipstick if I go to work or out in the evening, and that’s it.   (I’m not recommending them–I just haven’t found natural products that do what drugstore mascara and lipsticks do.   In general, expensive brands have just as much junk in them as cheap brands do.)   On days I don’t have to dress up, I wear no makeup at all, letting my skin breathe.   I’ve read that the “natural” brands (Jason, KissMyFace, etc.) still are found to have toxic chemicals in them when they are tested.   Anyone have better ideas?   I don’t think “bare mineral makeup” is the answer.   I realize that’s all the rage, but they’re still metals or minerals, maybe better than the worst products, but still pore clogging and not really the nutrition skin needs.

 

I also like to go in the sun to run, garden, or play tennis, several days a week–just not long enough to burn.   And I use a crystal stick for deodorant (from the health food store or Azure Standard)–it’s just salt!   No aluminum products that build up, are very difficult to eliminate, and cause Alzheimer’s risk.   (To answer your question, I do use Basic H by Shaklee, not for a beauty product, but for a veg/fruit wash, highly diluted, in a water bottle.)