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…..)

winner of katie thompson CD’s announced today :-)

Tomorrow, a photo journal of my OUTRAGEOUSLY AWFUL green-smoothie-drinking contest with Jillene last night!

But today….I was inspired by your stories (to win 2 Katie Thompson CD’s from my blog on April 18)!

Two of you wrote songs. Joni in Japan, 10 km from the tsunami, told us about her experience living through the disaster and feeding others around her.

Sharon told about hosting a dinner party using raw vegan 12 Steps recipes where her friends asked if they could lick their plates! GreenSmoothieGuy Gary told about helping his autistic son with good nutrition.

Health care workers shared their experience trying to help people. Several of you said sheepishly that you borrow my title of GreenSmoothieGirl at work. (It’s OUR title, my friends–consider yourself the Deputy!) Two of you told about taking a courageous path to beat cancer, including Kim Taylor, our winner, whose story is below. (And thank you to everyone who shared your phenomenal stories–read about them HERE!)

This story inspired me not only because of Kim’s own personal path, but also that she has taken it to greater heights helping others. Through her suffering, she’s created abundance and wellness for those around her. Love you, Kim! Here’s her story:

“I am the Green Smoothie Girl at work. I work for a dialysis center and a lot of our patients have Type 2 diabetes or high Blood Pressure that has caused their kidneys to fail. I have often thought that if these patients had done something 20 years ago with their diet that maybe they could have reversed the diagnosis and prevent the future diagnosis of kidney failure. My heart goes out to each and every one of them because they have to sit in a chair for 4 hours, 3 days a week with needles in their arm in order to live.

“I was diagnosed with hereditary Breast Cancer July ’09. I caught it extremely early. I chose to have my breasts removed and there were no signs that the cancer had spread, so chemo and radiation were not recommended. I felt that the Lord literally gave me my job so that I could literally learn from my patients. I was going to learn all that I could about diet and nutrition.

“There is a saying that when the student is ready the teacher will appear. I saw a car with GreenSmoothieGirl.com on it, and when I got home I went to Robyn’s website and ordered The Green Smoothies Diet.

“Everyone that knows me knows about green smoothies and the 12 Steps to Whole Foods. My whole family is on board with me and it is wonderful. I had the opportunity to teach a class on Green Smoothies to a group of Breast Cancer survivors July ’10 and demonstrate how easy it is to consume all those wonderful greens and fruit.

“A few months later my friend Judy called me the Green Smoothie Girl and thanked me for such a life-changing knowledge. I was so grateful that I was able to influence someone’s for the better. It truly felt great to be in your shoes for just a moment.

“There are so many wonderful benefits I personally have noticed since I have been drinking my smoothies: more energy, better sleep, better digestion, and my favorite is that I am happier. I wish that when a person goes to a doctor for depression that the doctor would suggest drinking green smoothies for 30 days and come back for a follow up appointment, before prescribing an antidepressant drug.

“I have taken back my personal well being and I will think twice before ever consuming another prescription drug again.”

Thank You,

Kim Taylor

The rest of the story with Rich the Pharmacist. Part 1 of 2.

So here’s the rest of the story with Rich, my first high-school boyfriend. I told you how I ran into him on the plane on his way to pharmacists’ immunization training, and he helped us out in Seattle.

I told him, as we reminisced, that before I straightened out my lifestyle, I was 26 and weighed 206 lbs. I was walking in the mall trying to induce labor 2 days after my due date. I saw him and cheerfully said, “Hey Rich!” He looked at me, like, “No comprendo!” and walked right on by. He literally hadn’t recognized me. I was mortified.

Guiltily, he said, “Well, I relate to that. I saw you getting out on the curb, outside. I didn’t even want to approach you because I am ashamed about how I look.”

With 70% of America overweight, I often get the sense that the vast majority of us feel trapped inside someone else. We barely recognize ourselves. Can’t believe this happened to us. Just a five-pound weight gain annually is obesity, in a decade. That’s gaining just ounces a month.

And it seems almost sudden that, in mid-life, we’re ashamed and shocked that we got this way and we wonder how it happened and where’s the way out.

Rich texted me after we were both home in Utah. This is part of it:

“If I do this I want to do it full on, full tilt, full bore, hardcore, never look back, no holds barred, past the point of no return. If I am going to approach it like that, I figure I need the very best tools.”

(He then asks me to hook him up with a BlendTec.)

About the lecture in Seattle, he said:

You gave me hope. I’ve listened to so many doctors, psychologists, “professional” pharmacists, counselors with all their psycho-babble and I can tell they are just saying what they’ve been told to say. You and I talked about people who claim to be experts on nutrition but who look like the ‘before’ poster for a weight-loss program.

“Because of the way I know you, I was already open to your message. I watched you very closely, as you talked to a long line of people after the lecture about their very personal problems and hopes and challenges. To make sure you’re the same Robyn with whom we hid our affection for each other when we were young. And, you are. Just more secure and wiser. Your smile never turned and your enthusiasm never changed.

“Because I am apple shaped rather than pear shaped, people are surprised to know that I carry all my weight in my upper body. So I can still bench press 225 a few times, but I have to wear a C-pap at night with supplemental oxygen so I don’t stop breathing and suffocate. My lungs have more weight pressing on them than they can handle. If I could become one of your miracles, I could kick the C-pap habit. That would be worth so much more than money could buy. I guess I don’t have to tell you that. Look at me, preaching to the choir.”

A few days ago, a GSG reader pushed back on this blog, not just once but more–against my stating that YOU CAN’T AFFORD TO EAT HOT DOGS.

I always appreciate pushback, because it keeps an honest conversation going. But I’ll tell you what I think of that tomorrow.

thoughts on SLEEP

Everybody knows sleep is critical. I’m going to hit just bullet points, in this blog, about what I’ve studied about sleep. This used to be a huge issue for me because I didn’t fall asleep, and I didn’t stay asleep, starting when I was about 10. Insomnia was a major problem whenever I was stressed or even preoccupied about something.

Key to solving the problem was to turn my brain off by doing something relaxing before bed. (Stop working. Stop exercising. Don’t problem-solve hard things late at night. I don’t particularly like watching TV, but if I do it for 45 min. for bed, I fall asleep quickly.)

Also, I take melatonin, that you can get from a health food store. And finally, I get wonderful minerals in a chelation that goes quickly and directly to cells, in the form of fulvic acid.

I don’t do anything in my bed except sleep. (I can think of one exception, but I’m single. Enough said.) It’s wise not to spend a lot of time reading, eating, and watching TV in your bed, if you have insomnia. Then you’re training your psyche to associate sleep with the bed.

This eight-hours-of-sleep thing we’re told is necessary is fairly random. People who get 9+ hours of sleep actually have a higher mortality rate. There’s nothing wrong with 7, or 6, hours of sleep. I never get 8 hours. Ever. And not because I’m too busy.

I fall asleep at 11 pm or so, and I wake up six hours later. (If I’m eating 100% raw food, I often wake up fully rested after 4.5 hours of sleep. This is because my body spent no energy during the night digesting food, and it has plenty of energy reserves.)

I don’t even have an alarm clock. About once a year if I have to be up at 3 a.m. to go to the airport, I borrow a clock from my kids. How many hours you get is less important than that you get to complete sleep cycles. Sleep cycles are about 90 minutes long.

Six hours of sleep, when you wake up on your own, at the end of four 90-min. cycles, is more productive and results in being more rested, than 8 hours of sleep that tears you out of the REM part of your sleep cycle with a screeching alarm clock.

This is why sleep disorders (often caused by overweight) are so disruptive to health in many ways. If you go into REM (rapid eye-movement) sleep and get interrupted, you’re far more tired than if you got too-few hours of sleep.

An hour of sleep before midnight is worth two hours of sleep after midnight. Going to bed earlier (at 10 or 11) is very helpful to that end! And, discipline yourself to go to bed at the same time every night, to train your circadian rhythms. I am almost religious about going to bed at 11 p.m. One of the worst things you can do  is to have a widely varying sleep schedule.

If you can carve out 15 minutes during the day to lie down and rest, or meditate, or sleep for 15 min., you can find yourself as rested as you would be if you took a serious nap. And studies show that those who meditate or rest twice a day sleep better at night. At least take a few minutes to shut your eyes. Eye rest can translate to overall rest.

Another technique that is really helpful is to isolate groups of muscles and contract them for 10 seconds, then deeply relax them. Feet, legs, and glutes, for instance. Head and neck. Shoulders, arms, and torso. This helps you focus on something very physical and simple, it creates a habit for bedtime that opts out of the day’s stresses, and it focuses the mind and body on relaxation. You complete the exercise prepared to sleep.

Another thing I do is to train my mind to go AWAY from problem solving and productivity, to my “happy places.” Once I was on Castaway Cay (Disney’s island) swinging in a hammock with my husband in perfect weather–as my children played close by–and I remember it as one of the happiest and most peaceful moments of my life. I go to that place in my mind and it helps me sleep. Or I go up Provo Canyon on my bike or my skiis, in my imagination–my everyday “happy place.”

Those are some little nuggets I’ve collected over the years about sleep that have helped me a lot.

what I’m eating on the detox

Patti wrote and said, “I hope you’ll be willing to share with us a bit about your detox experiences as well as a few ideas on raw meals for those of us who can only be with you in spirit as our budgets right now are overloaded.”

When you detox, the liver, kidneys, lymph system, digestive system, or bloodstream can sometimes get overloaded as your body throws off accumulations of chemicals and waste products. Common symptoms are headaches and digestive changes (usually diarrhea, but bloating, gas, cramps, or constipation can happen).

You can slow down a cleanse, if necessary, with a baked potato or other cooked vegetables. I stay away from grains and legumes while I’m cleansing–too heavy. (No sugar, no meat or eggs/milk products either. No drinks except water–drink lots of water!)

Debbie in Portland, who set up the three classes I’m teaching first weekend in Feb., wrote me her dietary plans, below. They look a lot like what I’ve been doing, except for the tuna & mayo, and I have just GS for dinner rather than what I make my kids. Debbie calls chocolate “non-negotiable,” LOL!

I sometimes have hot chocolate: Cocoa Mojo/Coconut Milk Powder from my store. And once I broiled quartered corn tortillas to eat with guacamole. One day I had some Turnip Leek Soup (Ch. 6 of 12 Steps, it’s really yummy). And I eat a little dried guava or mango that I brought home from Africa. Everything else is GREEN SMOOTHIE and salads and HOT PINK SMOOTHIE. I was hungry the first couple of days, but that diminishes as you adjust. Your metabolism relaxes so your body can focus on detoxification.

I love detoxing. I’m glad Tera (GreenSmoothieQueen) asked me to collaborate with her to do this with our readers. I feel light and energetic when I eat virtually all raw. I don’t have cleansing reactions, probably because I “run clean” all the time anyway, so it’s not a very dramatic shift like it will be for those eating the S.A.D. It may take you a few years of eating a whole-foods, mostly-raw diet to arrive at that place where a detox doesn’t throw you for a loop. (One reader said all she can do is SLEEP.)

Here’s Debbie’s meal plan for January, eating what she makes for her kids for dinner (and she didn’t say what that is):

Daily- pre-breakfast (about 8:30 a.m.)- 3 cups green smoothie

– dinner 1 cup green smoothie with a tablespoon hydrated chia seeds, main dish of soup, legume or starchy-vegetable based.

M-W-F– breakfast (about 11:30 a.m.)- 2 cups fruity-ish smoothie, soaked grains or sprouted bread

— lunch (biggest meal, about 3:30 p.m.)- 2 cups gr. smoothie, big green salad with pumpkin seeds/ beans/avocado for heartiness, GSG salad dressing, dark chocolate bar (quantity as needed)

T-Th-Sat– breakfast- 2 cups hot pink smoothie with about 1 tbls. flax oil added

— lunch– 2 cups green smoothie, 1/4-1/3 cup sprouted almonds or other nuts/seeds, coconut milk/cocoa (quantity as needed, again)

Sunday– breakfast– 3 cups green smoothie with 1 tbsp. flax oil added

— lunch- 3 cups green smoothie, tuna (with half and half white bean puree and mayo, onions, etc) on sprouted bread, fresh veggies, chocolate in some form

— dinner- 2 cups green smoothie and whatever is served for extended family dinner

Green Smoothie Testimonials, Part 15

Well, my friends, I’m off to Anaheim for the Natural Products Expo, to see what’s new and cool in raw, whole foods and natural healing.

While I’m gone, it’s time for another round of . . . are you excited? . . . I am! . . .

GREEN SMOOTHIE TESTIMONIALS.

I’ll do just a few days’ worth. Enough for a morale boost. Not so much that you’re bored. (I get excited about green smoothies again every time I read what y’all have sent me! So check in here every day.)

If you’re new and want to contribute your testimonial, write us at support123 [at] greensmoothiegirl.com with whatever part of your name you’re willing to have publicized on this blog.

Here’s a good one I received from Eddie:

“I started doing smoothies twice a day (breakfast and lunch), July 14, 2008. At the time, I had no idea what to expect, as I was just trying this on a whim. After about two weeks, I noticed I lost about 5 pounds. I decided to continue this process, and switching up my dinners to be cooked, mostly vegetarian. Another 2-3 weeks passed by and I lost another 5 pounds. Something was working… I suspect it was the combination of green smoothies and going mostly vegetarian.

Well, along my journey, I started seeing books about raw food and 80-10-10, and just a whole bunch of information. I decided to try doing raw, and for the most part I have been able to maintain about 90-95% raw since I started doing this. Every week that passed I noticed I kept losing 2.5 pounds a week, for an eventual total loss so far of about 47 pounds. About 3 months into my journey, I read 80-10-10 Diet by Douglas Graham, and have implemented a lot of his concepts in my daily routines, so most of my daily intake consists of fruits and vegetables, with very small amounts of nuts/seeds. I noticed that with gourmet raw using high content fat (ie. nuts and seeds), I would do alright but I truly thrived doing 80-10-10.

As far as exercise goes, even before I started smoothies, I was doing twice a week at the gym doing a cycle/spin class, and I would occasionally do some light weights at home. I have noticed that my cycle/spin classes, I have been able to maintain extreme high energy levels and not gas out when on 80-10-10. I also noticed that when doing raw-gourmet (with higher fat), that I would not be as energized. Another thing I should note, my muscle recovery times have improved dramatically with 80-10-10– gone are the days of recovery, instead my muscle recovery occurs in about 15-20 hours, ready to hit up more exercise the next day.

I used to have a sinus headache about once a week. Those are all gone. I sleep much better, and noticed that I can go on my day with less sleep and still have a ton of energy. My daily diet still consists of two smoothies a day (one breakfast and one lunch) and my typical dinner meal varies, but it is typically in line with 80-10-10. It took me about 6 months to lose nearly 50 pounds, but the whole process was pretty easy. It is just a matter of committing your mind, and making great habits and breaking the bad ones.”

–Eddie Yee