Green Smoothie Testimonials, Part 16

“I have spent all my adulthood overweight and miserable. My weight went from 135 to 280 during that time. Most of the time I had skewed ideas that I was either too fat (when I weighed 135) and not that fat (when I weighed 280). My perception was always off. But I did know that I just didn’t feel good.

I have been on Weight Watchers, the soup diet, hard boiled egg diet, Chinese tea, and every diet that came in magazines. I finally found that Atkins worked for me–three times! Funny that I would go off after several months and the weight would come back on, with its 30.-lb. friend! I realized that if I kept dieting that way I would completely ruin my health. I was so afraid to start another diet, so I decided to never diet again and just accept myself as I was.

I remarried at 210 lbs. and within 3 years had put on 70 lbs. with careless eating, primarily fast food. Then my DH was diagnosed with cancer (digestive related) and I found GreenSmoothieGirl.com. It was an answer to prayer because this is a LIFESTYLE–not a diet. In the last 9 mos. I have lost 40 lbs., my skin glows, I am nearly off the medications I was taking for high blood pressure, arthritic aches and pains, and mucus. My wrinkles also are going away!

I will NEVER diet again because I can eat everything I want and truly enjoy it (even chocolate). I am never hungry because I have God’s fast food with me all the time (fruits). I have found that the more raw I eat, the faster I lose weight. I am no longer fanatical about it and believe that my body will end up the weight I am supposed to be, not the way society says it should be. I just wish I had been able to learn this earlier in life.

Sorry about the long blog, but I feel that finding GreenSmoothieGirl.com and Robyn’s blog has saved my life! Thanks, Robyn and every one else!”

–Karen L.

obesity conference

This is an email I got from a GSG reader. Dr. Larsen is a dentist who studies nutrition to help his patients and practices what he preaches. His observations at the obesity conference he recently attended parallel my own, as documented sometimes on this blog. What do you think?

Robyn,

I attended a seminar in Salt Lake a couple of weeks ago titled, “Obesity: A Scientific Update.” It was presented by Beverly White, PhD, RD and it was very interesting, thought you might be interested in what was said.

I will attach my notes, some of which may not make any sense, but the following are my overall impressions after the seminar.

First of all, the room was mostly full of nurses and dieticians, and I would say at least half of the group were either over weight or obese. These are the dieticians who are teaching Americans how to eat and be healthy.

The success rates for Americans who attempt fad diets is about 5-10% after 1 year. The success rates of the prescription medications is less, and ALL of them have serious side effects, and some physicians are leaving patients on them indefinitely because they know if they take them off, the weight will return, although none of the drugs have been approved for long term use. Bariatric surgeries are super expensive, and have complications and side effects as well, and not a great success rate. Dieticians working with clients may have a slightly higher success rate than the 5-10%, but when they stop seeing the nutritionist, the bad habits return and the weight comes back on. I got a very weird feeling about the whole obesity epidemic, kind of like there is nothing we can really do about it, even though we are the ones trained to help people eat healthy. Beverly cautioned the dieticians to not try to make too radical of a change to anyone’s diet, or they will rebel and not follow through.

I asked Beverly one-on-one between one of the breaks if she had read Colin Campbell, Joel Furhman, Mike Anderson, or had studied anything about plant-based diets in her PhD program. She was not familiar with any of the people I mentioned, had never heard of the China Study, for example, and they did not study plant-based diets.

At one point in the program, she asked how many eat 3-5 servings of fruits or vegetables/day (could be from a can, frozen, etc.) and about 30% of the group raised their hand. She asked if anyone eats 6-9 servings/day and I raised my hand along with I think one other person. After the class, one of the RD’s came running up to me and asked me how in the world I eat that many servings a day. I said it’s easy. I told her about green smoothies, she had never heard of them. I told her about plant-based diets, she had never heard of them.

They have done research that shows that children who are taught good nutrition at a young age can follow that for many years to come, and may be more likely to eat healthy than adults. Too bad what we’re teaching children isn’t always the best information, when it comes from government food pyramid.

Anyways, thought this might be interesting to you. It was kind of an eye-opener to me. I really feel like the MD’s and the RD’s and the nurses who are in our health care system don’t really believe in nutrition themselves.

Sincerely,

Garon Larsen

God created the Earth. Who created HMO’s?

My friend Claudia sent this to me two years ago and I just stumbled on it again:

In the beginning, God created the Heavens and the Earth and populated the Earth with broccoli, cauliflower and spinach, green and yellow and red vegetables of all kinds, so Man and Woman would live long and healthy lives.

Then using God’s great gifts, Satan created Ben and Jerry’s Ice Cream and Krispy Creme Donuts. And Satan said, “You want chocolate with that?” And Man said, “Yes!” and Woman said, “and as long as you’re at it, add some sprinkles.” And they gained 10 pounds. And Satan smiled.

And God created the healthful yogurt that Woman might keep the figure that Man found so fair. And Satan brought forth white flour from the wheat, and sugar from the cane and combined them. And Woman went from size 6 to size 14.

So God said, “Try my fresh green salad.” And Satan presented Thousand-Island dressing, buttery croutons and garlic toast on the side. And Man and Woman unfastened their belts.

God then said, “I have sent you heart healthy vegetables and olive oil in which to cook them.” And Satan brought forth deep fried fish and chicken-fried steak so big it needed its own platter. And Man gained more weight and his cholesterol went through the roof.

God then created a light, fluffy white cake, named it “Angel Food Cake,” and said, “It is good.” Satan then created chocolate cake and named it “Devil’s Food.”

God then brought forth running shoes so that His children might lose those extra pounds. And Satan gave cable TV with a remote control so Man would not have to toil changing the channels. And Man and Woman laughed and cried before the flickering blue light and gained pounds.

Then God brought forth the potato, naturally low in fat and brimming with nutrition. And Satan peeled off the healthful skin and sliced the starchy center into chips and deep-fried them. And Man gained pounds.

God then gave lean beef so that Man might consume fewer calories and still satisfy his appetite. And Satan created McDonald’s and its 99-cent double cheeseburger. Then said, “You want fries with that?” And Man replied, “Yes! And super size them!” And Satan said, “It is Good.” And Man went into cardiac arrest.

God sighed and created quadruple bypass surgery.

Then Satan created HMOs.

green smoothies and calories

Dear GreenSmoothieGirl:   I am nursing  my three-month old daughter and at the same time trying to lose the rest of my baby weight (I have about 43 pounds to lose…I gained 70 . . . oops!).   I have been trying to incorporate the smoothies into my diet, but it seems that I do not lose in the weeks when I am very consistent with drinking them.   This is what I am typically eating:

 

hot pink breakfast smoothie

1 small homemade pumpkin muffin (with wholegrain flour and agave nectar)

 

1/2 portion of whatever we had for dinner the night before (we are vegans, so usually some kind of veggie soup, stew, etc….always low fat)

1  quart green smoothie

 

vegan dinner…small portion

1 small homemade muffin

 

i also drink 2 cups of decaf chai and mother’s milk teas with stevia and a splash of vanilla almond milk

 

I am 6 feet tall and weigh approx 225 lbs (weighed 185 when I conceived, but would like to get back down to 165 eventually) and work out a few times a week.

 

I love drinking the smoothies, but am worried about the scale not moving down when I am drinking them . . . should I make my lunch only the smoothie and not any leftovers?

 

Answer:   I’m not a fan of strict calorie counting, but it helps to know some essential information.   First, your body can handle 600 to 800 calories at a time.   So, when we eat a huge meal of well over 800 calories, the body has to store some of that food energy as fat.

 

Second, a quart of green smoothie (good job!) is about 400 calories, or 500 if you’re adding a Tbsp. of flax oil.   So just keep an eye on that.   It’s obviously very nutritionally dense and low in calories.   If your leftovers portion is 600 calories, however, you might want to eat a smaller amount.

In general, your menu sounds good.   So, third, if you are eating in accordance with principles of good nutrition, not overeating, and not indulging in processed foods, and you are still not losing weight you need to lose, then my next suggestion for you would be to have your thyroid checked.   Don’t go to your OB/GYN or a standard lab for this.   Find a clinic specializing in women’s hormones, and the practitioner may be a nurse.   Have a full blood panel run, because the T3 measurement your OB/GYN would likely have you test does not tell the whole story.   You will need to have your blood workup analyzed for a fairly complex interplay of a number of factors, including T4 and some other hormones that work with your thyroid.

 

If you are one of the burgeoning number of women suffering from low thyroid (estimates seem to fall about 25% of American women), ask to be prescribed a bioidentical thyroid hormone rather than a synthetic drug (like Cytomel or Synthroid).   The natural bioidenticals are also cheaper than the drugs, since you can’t patent a natural substance.

PCOS and protein

Dear GreenSmoothieGirl: I have PCOS and I have battled weight for years.   I am currently 275 lbs and 5’10”.   I believe that what we eat does impact our health dramatically.   I was on a green smoothie a day for over a month and started to feel better.   Then I was told that it was too high in carbohydrates by my doctor and that I needed more protein to combat insulin resistance that accompanies my PCOS.   The recommendation: eggs, butter and meat.   I had been eating a green smoothie consisting of 1 c carrot juice, 1 c collard greens, 1 c. kale, 1/2 c. spinach, 1 frozen banana, 1/2 c. frozen strawberries, blueberries, raspberries.   I would sweeten with stevia if needed.     They want me to cut out the carrot juice, the banana and the berries.   I like greens but I need the fruit to cut the grassy taste.

 

I cannot believe that more and more dead animal and factory farmed animal product is better for me, but I am desperate to regain my health.   Do you have any experience with PCOS or insulin resistance and can you offer me any hope or education about what to do?

 

Answer:   I can’t advise you about specific health problems.   Doctors, however, mostly don’t know that higher-protein foods aren’t limited to animal products.   Higher amounts of legumes (beans, lentils, peanuts) and nuts will increase proteins and decrease any quick-to-the-bloodstream carbs.   And in your green smoothies, you’re already using stevia for sweetener, but you may want to use the mixed berries (lower in sugar) and use lemon and very little fruit (maybe a small apple).   As fruits go, bananas are very high in sugar.

your body needs IODINE . . . part 2 of 3 on thinning hair

I have been reading a bunch of scientific papers by David Brownstein and G. Abraham on iodine, as I have suspected that iodine deficiency may be partly to blame for the fact that 1 in 4 American women has a thyroid problem (countless men, too), and most of those are undiagnosed.

 

You may know that your thyroid is responsible for regulating metabolism.   If you have hypothyroidism, among a host of other symptoms, you are likely to have low energy and gain weight easily (and have a hard time losing it), regardless of your caloric intake.   (And hyperthyroidism, which is  that gland revving and eventually burning out,  often manifests with buggy eyes and manic energy.)   If your way of testing your thyroid is to go to an M.D. and ask for a test, you likely tested only T3, and that doesn’t show anywhere near the whole picture.   Also, the M.D.s accept a “normal” range that is inappropriately huge.

You need to go to a clinic specializing in hormones, and usually those are run by nurse practitioners.   Locally (Utah County), three clinics specialize in this, but I recommend Francine at Wellnique in Orem, who prescribes only bioidenticals rather than synthetics.   Get a full-panel blood test and have her analyze the interplay of a variety of factors including T3, T4, progesterone, and testosterone.   (Unfortunately most insurance companies won’t pay for this.)   You have to have iodine to synthesize T3 and T4.   And iodine is frankly hard to come by in food sources.

North Americans and Western Europeans have a high rate of goiter, or thyroid enlargement as felt by palpating the neck.   That’s a classic sign of iodine deficiency.   The studies I reviewed showed anywhere from 50 to 90 percent of Caucasions to have this disorder, rather easily rectified for most with iodine supplementation.

I’ve included a link below to quite a few iodine studies, for the meticulous, analytical, and detail oriented among you. 

You won’t be surprised to hear me say that the best way to get highly bioavailable iodine is through plant food:   the Japanese get it through sea vegetables, like seaweed, kelp, and dulse.   They have very low rates of breast and reproductive cancers and other iodine-deficiency problems, whereas we have high rates of all those problems.   If you like nori sheets, eat a few every day.   Roll hummus and/or veggies in it, or tear it up and put it in soup.   I personally don’t like it, so I season food with kelp, but that’s not enough.   I am using a Lugol solution of iodine and potassium iodine to try to achieve the average Japanese rate of iodine through seaweed consumption.

These are some papers regarding research on iodine:

http://www.optimox.com/pics/Iodine/opt_Research_I.shtml