Learn more about 12 Steps to Whole Foods.
We’ve heard from thousands of people whose lives have been changed from 12 Steps to Whole foods. Here are a few people’s testimonials:
Robyn Openshaw’s 12 Steps to Whole Foods is by far the most comprehensive, must-read, nutritional material out there! Our family has spent years reading the latest raw-food books/plans and struggled with contradicting information. We found most recipes to be too time consuming, complicated, and expensive for our large family. And we still had questions—if we are to eat “every seed bearing thing,” why aren’t grains widely used in raw food recipes? What about good qualities of dairy, such as probiotics in yogurt, etc.? Most importantly, how can a mom of four with a limited budget possibly make it all work?
I found Robyn’s site by chance—and all of a sudden the answers (plus more!) we’d been searching for were right in front of our eyes. Robyn has covered pretty much every topic in the nutrition field with a simple, doable approach. We are excited to finally have found a way to make nutrition work for our family!
— Jennifer Bartlett
I love that there is one goal a month! That makes changing your way of eating less stressful and more enjoyable. I also like it because you can focus on that goal and observe the changes that goal is making to your body and in your life.
— AB from IL.
The Medical Community Could Offer No Relief
Two years ago, illness and disease brought my life to a grinding halt. The medical community could not explain my symptoms nor could they offer me relief from my pain. I began to read books on natural healing and discovered the underlying truth that I needed to revamp my diet. I stumbled upon a GreenSmoothieGirl video on YouTube and discovered 12 Steps to Whole Foodsshortly thereafter on the GSG website. What an amazing experience that was! Within a few short months, I was able to completely revolutionize my nutritional world. Wow!!
The 12 step program is a well researched, easy to read guide on eating well with lots of great suggestions on how to save time and money. Since implementing this program, I feel so confident about nutritionally meeting the needs of my family. Every chapter has fabulous recipes and challenging nutritional content. It charts a clear, achievable course for people who want to eat well but just don’t know how.
Since living the GSG diet, I have healed my metabolism. I weigh 20 pounds less and have dropped from a size 6 to a size 0 (who knew that size even existed!). I finally feel comfortable with my weight and how my clothes fit. My diet has become the foundation to my healing program and the improvement in my health has been remarkable in the last two years. I have way more energy and am excited about how my health will continue to improve.
I greatly appreciate the information in the 12 step program; it is well balanced and integrates time-tested traditional ways of eating with the latest research on healthy eating. Thank you for being a calm, reassuring voice that encourages us to make lifelong change. It’s not about products or gimmicks. It works for moms on tight budgets who stand as nutritional gatekeepers to the home. It worked for me and now my family is reaping the many, many benefits of whole foods!
— Darlene U., Canada
Feeling really good!
We are eating whole foods, including green smoothies, and feeling really good! I feel really good because my family is not eating any sugar, MSG, or preservatives.
My children ask before they eat things at relatives’ homes if they have these things in them!
My husband does irrigation work in central WA and so he is out in public every day, we go to town once a week, and so far none of us have gotten sick. I am praying it stays that way!
We really like the Almond Joy Fudge from Ch. 4, and my brother in law, whose wife is against anything I make (won’t eat it), told me he would pay me to make it for him!!
I made the Teriyaki Almonds for a camping trip in October and everyone gobbled them up! Some of them are going in on the Raw Almond group buy with us!
I like to make the whole wheat tortillas (Ch. 6) and fill them with different things like hummus, guacamole, and fresh veggies. For supper last night we had them as enchiladas, with brown rice, olives, salsa (homemade, canned), onions and homemade enchilada sauce. YUM!
We like Mexican food so I have made the Taco Lentils a lot (Ch. 6), which are especially good added to Taco Soup. I am even experimenting with converting sugar and white flour recipes (Ch. 11)–so far so good!
Early on in March we had a going away party for a friend of ours, he is allergic to dairy and so I made the ice cream in Ch. 11—YUM YUM! He really liked it and so did everyone else.
I made the Choc Chip Zucchini cookies for our camping trip and they were yum!
I like to read Robyn’s blog because she does the research for me and I don’t have work as hard to find things out! I still do a ton of research though. I like how it is all comprehensive in one spot. That way I don’t have to remember where I read it and it is easy to find.
I tell everyone about it, especially when they have health issues. Anyone who talks to me very long has heard of green smoothies. And some have tasted them. Anyone who eats at our house eats salad, whole food, and homemade salad dressing.
I have had little red bumps on my upper arms my whole life. Since I have not been eating any dairy they are gone. My husband’s chronic bad breath in the mornings is gone.
I wanted to try lactic fermentations (Ch. 9) next.
Love the dehydrator ideas (Ch. 7) and I am constantly learning new ways to use mine.
I really like the 12 Step blog for support. It’s nice to have somewhere to go and know that everyone eats this way and has the same problems with skeptics. It is great to know that we are not alone. GreenSmoothieGirl.com is a great place to ask questions and get answers.
Thank you, thank you!
— Beth W., Washington
Husband Lost 40LBS and Cured of Multiple Illnesses
I always considered myself a healthy eater and a good cook. I had been on Weight Watchers for 2 years and was almost to my desired weight, so I thought the foods I was preparing for my husband and children were healthy. Our dinner meals consisted of a medium serving of a white meat such as chicken, or lower fat ground beef in some form, a side of fresh or frozen vegetables, and a salad of lettuce and tomatoes with regular dressing and croutons.
However, in 2001, my husband was diagnosed with prostate cancer. He also had asthma, tons of allergies, and high blood pressure. He had suffered from these ailments all of his life and fought colds, bronchitis, and pneumonia every winter. If we had gone ahead with the doctor’s advice to remove the prostate, the operation alone would probably have killed him. Instead, I asked my husband if he was ready to try the “green diet” . When I’d told him about healthy eating before, his reaction was immediate, “That diet would kill me, I’m allergic to all of those vegetables!!” Now, with cancer looming, he said, “Well, if I’m going to die anyway, I might as well die trying something”.
In one month of eating mostly vegetables and drinking a green drink, he lost 40 pounds, stopped using his asthma inhalers, never went back to the doctor for allergy shots, and stopped using almost all of his medications. After a year of many healing illnesses, he is now enjoying the best health he has ever had in his life. The doctor who treated his cancer was very concerned with my husband’s choice to avoid surgery and told him that he would die within 10 years. He recently saw a new specialist in the area where we now live who could find no sign of the cancer and told him to never come back to see him! He said, “There is no proof that diet can cure cancer, but whatever you are doing, keep doing it!” It has been over seven years since the original diagnosis.
I discovered the GreenSmoothieGirl.com site while searching for new recipes and ideas for meals. I ordered the 12 Step plan for the recipes. I have found the book be to very informative and wish that I had raised my children in this way. They can see that the way we have been eating has really benefitted us, but prefer to continue to eat in the manner they were raised. We will keep working on them!
We began drinking green smoothies this summer, and now my husband complains if I don’t make time to prepare them! He has still had issues with his blood pressure and has recently noticed that he doesn’t need to take as much medication and is sometimes able to go completely without it. We attribute that to the additional nutrition we are getting from the smoothies. I am slowly trying the recipes in the book.
Last week I made the Chocolate Beet cake (Ch. 11) for a church dinner. It was entered in a dessert competition. Unfortunately, the highly sugared desserts won, but I had one lady who asked for the recipe and was excited to try it. She couldn’t believe it had beets in it! I also made a batch of the candied almonds for my father’s birthday gift. He has always loved dates and nuts, so this was a perfect gift for him! (I couldn’t stop eating them!)
— Christine Workman, Covington, WA
Easy to Understand and Implement – Even With Lots of Food Allergies
I have LOVED 12 Steps! The book is very informational and easy to understand and implement. I did tackle a couple habits at once since I already had the green smoothie drinking part down as well as some others. The biggest thing I want to comment on are the recipes. Recipes are KEY to success and you need GOOD tasting recipes to make transitions like these. Robyn’s recipes are FANTASTIC! I have yet to try any that we did not love and now use as a family favorite consecutively. Whenever I am “experimenting” with new recipes my hubby gets nervous, but if I tell him it’s a 12 Step recipe he calms down and doesn’t worry since there’s not one he hasn’t loved. (He’s my skeptic at times). I really like that I can count on the recipes being tasty since I’ve read/owned many, many health books with crap recipes in them. BLAH! These are great!
Another thing I wanted to mention about the recipes I’ve enjoyed is that we eat gluten, dairy, egg, and soy free and a huge majority of the recipes are naturally free of these things. There are still plenty of worthwhile recipes in the collections having these restrictions that make it worth the purchase. I have shared 12 Steps with family and friends. My aunt bought the program and has loved it, and I have several other friends who are slowly making their way (they do green smoothies now–hooray!).
I love that Robyn has broken it into 12 Steps and if you can add them into your life you will be so much healthier and happier!
— Laura Tervort
Love the Practical Approach
I have been reading Robyn’s blog for a few months and then attended a class she taught about green smoothies. It has been just over a month but we are drinking green smoothies daily and I’ve already converted a few friends. I can’t help but smile as I watch my 5 kids drink their smoothies loaded with veggies and fruits every day.
I bought the 12 Step program shortly after I started my new green smoothie habit. I had already watched all of the YouTube videos and read everything on GreenSmoothieGirl.com. I just couldn’t get enough. I have read so many books and articles on healthy eating and this feels like a breath of fresh air. I find some of the same things I’ve learned elsewhere but the 12 Steps is much easier and enjoyable to read and follow.
I love the practical approach. I love that Robyn is sensitive to the time and money constraints that are part of real life. The 12 Step program is simple, affordable, and doable even for a busy mom with 5 kids. We are just getting started but I’ve made the Chocolate Beet Cake (Ch. 11) along with several different smoothies and some fabulous salads. I’m so excited to implement each of these steps throughout the coming year and record the benefits that we experience from each upgrade to our diet.
The 12 Steps program is loaded with information. I bought a freezer and am already planning for my garden next year with all of this new information in mind. It has really changed the way I look at food and food preparation.
I can’t thank you enough for the time and effort you’ve put into sorting through all of the information available and bringing the most relevant and useful information into one program that can be followed by anyone. Perhaps the biggest challenge is to take it one step at a time and not get overwhelmed by trying to do it all at once. Thanks again and keep up the good work.
— Kelleen P
Never Going Off Smoothies Again
I started drinking green smoothies about 3 months ago kind of sporadically. I felt great when I had them but some days I didn’t plan well enough and forgot to make them. When I’m on green smoothies I feel lighter, lose weight quickly, and sleep better. My whole energy over all is so much higher, and my skin looks the best it ever has! A few weeks ago, for some reason I stopped drinking them, dove back into not eating great, and I felt awful immediately. My skin broke out bad and I was miserable. That’s when I said I am never going off of them again. I started again last Tuesday, and here it is Monday and I feel wonderful again!
I’ve been following the 12 Steps / GSG diet. I have a hot pink smoothie in the AM and a piece of fruit mid-morning. Lunch is a green smoothie and salad, sometimes just some almonds. Dinner is something healthy and a large salad. I have no cravings for any of the junk I used to live on.
My kids actually really do like green smoothies. The way I make mine they taste like lemonade which they like. I also started cooking with coconut oil and using it on my skin. WOW! I will never use anything else again! The recipes are awesome, and the advice is great! This is the best life style change ever. So thank you!
— Beth from Connecticut
Energy and Vitality
I have been drinking green smoothies every day since April of this year. Since having my son and breastfeeding him exclusively, I have had a hard time getting enough nutrients and calories into my diet because he is allergic to gluten and dairy so I couldn’t eat anything I was used to.
I never had any energy and I was constantly feeling down. Then I learned about the benefits of eating a raw green diet with plenty of raw veggies and fruits and how it could change your life. I decided to jump on the web and search for some smoothie recipes. I couldn’t find any at first.
The only thing that I kept coming to was a YouTube video from GreenSmoothieGirl.com on how to make a green smoothie. I tried it and I was hooked! I bought the 12 Step program the next day and have been drinking them daily with my infant/toddler son ever since.
The information in the 12 Step program and on the site is so abundant and it seems that Robyn has done all of the research on all of the nutrition stuff out there. She has sifted through it leaving pure truth about nutrition. I would have never been able to put all of this information together myself. It truly has changed my life and given me a completely different perspective to what eating a healthy diet truly means. I feel so great now and my digestive cycle is very regular. I am so passionate about eating right and including greens in my diet daily.
My friends and family have started asking me what I am doing that is giving me so much more energy and vitality. Then I basically explode with information that I have learned from the 12 Steps and GreenSmoothieGirl.com. Currently I have converted 4 family members and 3 friends to drinking green smoothies at least regularly if not daily.
Oh, and I must have a bowl of the granola everyday (Ch. 10), which is one of Robyn’s amazing recipes. I can’t live without it and I am so thankful that I found the information all compiled into one place.
So, thank you Robyn to devoting your life to living healthier and teaching others how to live healthier too!
— Leslie W
Neither of My School Kids Have Had a Sick Day!
I started 12 Steps during the busiest time of my life, when my fourth baby was 6 weeks old. My other little ones were 2, 5, and 6. It was three days before school started and everyone was sick with a cold but me. I was sick with an inflamed gallbladder and scheduled for surgery at age 33! We had been sick more than 50% of the last 365 days.
“Enough is enough!” I thought, “I know what I should be eating, I’ve been studying this since I was pregnant with my first, but I can’t figure out how to apply what I know. It overwhelms me. I want my family to be healthy, especially my son who is sick the most. Maybe Robyn’s program can teach me something I don’t already know. I trust Robyn’s nutritional philosophy more than any other author out there.” (Sorry I was skeptical at first, but the beauty of 12 Steps I now see, is putting the transition into a do-able order and adding one thing at a time.)
We started 12 Steps on the first day of school. An awesome time to start because fruit and veggies are abundant in the garden and cheap at the store, and the beginning of the school year is a time of transition anyway! I had paid for school lunch, but we started 12 Steps just in time. None of my kids will ever have school lunch (they serve corn dogs every single day; I hurt for the other kids).
The first week curriculum for first grade was “health and nutrition.” At dinner I remarked on the coincidence that I was taking a health and nutrition class too. My kids already know to expect fallacious nutritional information from school, so we compared notes on what we were learning each night at dinner. My kids loved that I was going “back to school” too.
I call “12 Steps” my online class and I always say “my teacher says . . .” Rather than being on a crazy diet, in my family’s eyes, I am taking a university-level, highly prestigious, nutrition course and I will “graduate” in a year (you never really graduate, though, do you?). In my eyes, it’s even better than that. Each month as my kids start new units of study, they are excited to hear about my new unit of study.
During the first month, my goal was to drink 8+ glasses of water a day instead of 3 or 4. I had been perpetually dehydrated since I got pregnant, and nursing was making it worse. That was a hard goal because I was so insanely busy I didn’t even have time to get a drink until 10 in the morning some days.
More than once, due to kid distractions, a green smoothie took three days to make. Water in the blender the first day, wash produce the next, chop stuff up and blend it the third. Getting hydrated was wonderful and I had green drinks on days when I couldn’t get a smoothie made. A ginormous burden of guilt (that I didn’t even know I had) lifted off my shoulders about my family’s nutrition. That gave me an emotional boost. The water made me feel physically so much better. I cancelled my gallbladder removal surgery and I don’t recall when it happened, but all of a sudden I had an extra 30 minutes to make green smoothie every day (it takes longer holding a baby or toddler or both while you do it).
Organic ready-to-eat salads just happened to be on sale for $.99 a box when we hit month two. That would convince anyone to love salad, no work and so tasty. When the sale ended two weeks later, I found again that I magically had the extra time to wash piles of romaine, spinach, and other lettuces. Another huge burden lifted off my shoulders, because I didn’t have to think of what to have for dinner anymore, it was always salad. We had main dishes too, but they were way simpler, just side dishes really. Salad was fun. My kids love picking out toppings for the salad and my picky eater has a passion for making her salad pretty. She also loves that dinner every night is a salad bar. Dinner battles at our house almost disappeared. As the quality of our meals went up, there was less to complain about.
The third month was my birthday. I got a beet cake, a salad spinner, and the “okay” to order almonds in the GreenSmoothieGirl.com annual group buy. I have been substituting almonds, apples, and raisins for chips and pretzels (just a few per snack) since we started 12 Steps. I reverse engineered our favorite store salad dressings using high quality ingredients. It was fun.
Where did I get the time to sit around reverse engineering salad dressing recipes? It is a mystery to me. I am getting salad making down to a science. I love buying it. I love being the lady who fills her cart up with lettuce and practically nothing else every few days at the grocery store.
Instead of fruit snacks, my toddler hugs the bags of romaine and skips the complimentary Laffy Taffy at the check-out. (Toddlers transition so much faster than the rest of us). I took salad to the family potluck, and impressed my relatives when 2 of my 3 kids took big servings of it before eating anything else.
My husband won’t touch green smoothies, but he has enjoyed the improvement in the family menu and the unanticipated weight loss from having salads for dinner every day.
Wow, now we are into November and neither of my school kids have had a sick day! My toddler has been sick every other week like usual (and my husband too). Even the daily green smoothie can’t save her at age 2, I guess. With one kid and one parent sick a lot though, it is miraculous that no one else is getting it, as they got everything last year. And my son went off asthma medicine without a hitch. In the past, running out of medicine meant he would be sick in the next day or two, but so far so good! Thanks!
— Regina Slaugh
Profound Feelings of Gratitude
My son was in one of Robyn’s university classes last year, and she had the class members over to her home for green smoothies. He thought it was fabulous and phoned me and wanted me to sign up for 12 Steps to Whole Foods. We were already not eating soda, caffeine, white flour or sugar, etc. and made our own salad dressing, ate meat and dairy sparingly, and ate salad and vegetables daily.
We began drinking smoothies immediately, both green (Ch. 1) and hot pink (Ch. 10), and it has been over a year now and we continue to do this on a daily basis. I always have spinach and vary the greens, such as kale; red, green, or rainbow chard; different types of kale; or collard greens. I also vary the fruits seasonally.
My husband and I immediately felt as if we had more energy and many days I have a green smoothie for breakfast and a pink smoothie for lunch.
I have passed the information to many friends and family members and was especially interested in the program to help educate our children and grandchildren. Many are following the program, having purchased blenders and have green smoothies on a daily basis. As Robyn states, people are healthier, sickness is avoided, meals are easy to prepare, and family members are happy and satisfied. My friends who have children who are gluten intolerant have really been appreciative of the information that has been passed on to them — they feel that it is very hard to come up with food choices that are satisfying. Some are college students and one mother said that the smoothies would be such a blessing during this busy time of their lives.
From 12 Steps, I learned about not eating soy — we were drinking soy milk and having tofu occasionally and have eliminated it completely. I also was unaware of coconut water, coconut oil, and flax oil, which we purchase and store and use daily. Per Robyn’s blog, I use it as a moisturizer on face and skin. I also learned about alkaline water and hope to have a system soon. We were using filtered water but now see the benefit of making more changes. I also learned about kefir and use goat’s milk kefir since cow’s milk is very mucous forming to me.
I like all of the recipes I have tried and have learned that by looking at Robyn’s, I can easily adapt many of my own recipes and make them healthier.
I am impressed and grateful for Robyn’s careful research and study on health matters. She gives the sources so that we can do further study and continue the learning process and I have read many of the books on her recommended list. I feel that from her passionate desire to share her information and educate mothers in the proper way to nourish their families, she has gained the confidence and respect of those who hearken to her counsel
The chapter on gardening is wonderful to help us expand our abilities and be self sufficient through home production and storage. We often have house guests and many take Robyn’s book, The Green Smoothies Diet, as they retire to their room.
I always have requests of “Could we have that for breakfast?” This weekend a professor is here from a university who will be speaking at a management society meeting and he already has heard of green smoothies and is eager to take it to his wife who only prepares organic foods for her family. He asked for the website and wants to learn of this new aspect of nutrition.
I cannot end without expressing gratitude. Many years ago my little brother who was 8 at the time gave me a small calendar with beautiful quotes for Christmas. One was a Chinese proverb that GRATITUDE has three forms: a feeling in the heart, an expression in words, and a giving in return.
Please know of the profound feelings of gratitude, Robyn, for all that you have done and continue to do, and know that words cannot properly express my gratitude for the gift you have given to so many, and may we extend our gift of friendship, support to you, and prayers as you continue to expand our horizons.
— Jody M.
I have learned so much from the 12 Steps to Whole Foods program! I have learned to go back to the basics, what God intended us to eat. So many people ask me, “Well what do you eat then?” There is an abundance of food to eat! It is aggravating because so many people are so ignorant about good nutrition. I am more aware of all the advertisements promoting good nutrition in certain products just to make a sale, when they are really so far from good nutrition.
I tell so many people about the 12 Step program! It is very obvious that I do not eat the ways of the world. I stand out like a sore thumb when I don’t eat the food at a party and I bring my own snacks.
I have given countless number people the links and a CD full of information. I have inspired many people to start making green smoothies, four of whom have bought a BlendTec. They too have experienced the benefits with just the smoothies.
I was at dinner a few months ago and one of them was a pharmacist. He was giving me a hard time about why I eat the way I do. He asked, “Why do you eat like that?” I said, “To put you out of business one day.” He said, “Well, what about when you get diabetes, high blood pressure, high cholesterol?” I told him I wouldn’t get those diseases because of the way I eat and the things I do. People don’t get how important food is, not just live but to live a healthy, full life and stay out of the doctor’s office. I have not gotten sick since being on the program. I am a runner and feel better than I did before.
I have a degree in Exercise Science and have taken many nutrition classes. A whole food program makes the most sense, since it is what our bodies were designed to have. I have a friend that is getting her masters in nutrition and snubs me for the way I eat because of her education in nutrition. She thinks it is bogus, but then wonders why she can’t lose 20 pounds. This program has no comparison to other nutrition. This one makes sense and it is easy, very easy!
I wish I could give a book to all my friends and family and have them change their lives. Or even just have them start drinking green smoothies!
I absolutely LOVE the recipes in 12 Steps to Whole Foods! I make my shopping list from the book. I printed off all of the pages and made it into a book so I can keep it in the kitchen. My three year old loves the food in there as well. The salads are my favorite! Well, and the treats too.
I feel incredible since I have been on the program. I enjoy the fresh food. It is easier than most people think. I love being in the kitchen and then eating the good, wonderful food! My friends and family have been my guinea pigs. I haven’t had too many complaints.
The benefits are countless. The extra time in the kitchen and the extra money spent is more than worth it. It is like putting money into savings because I won’t spend it on my bad health in the future. I look forward to the day where I can have a garden and just walk outside to pick ingredients for dinner.
I will continue on the journey for myself and telling others about the program. It is time to reverse the way we eat. It will only help us. Thank you!
— Meghan Meredith
Woman After My Own Heart
I am so glad I found Robyn’s 12 Steps to Whole Foods.I was explaining to an out-of-state friend how to make green smoothies over the phone and I thought I would search for a video demonstration on YouTube and I found Robyn. I went to her GreenSmoothieGirl.com website and felt like I was reading in print the conversation I just had with my friend!
I find Robyn to be a woman after my own heart. I ordered the 12 Steps while Robyn was developing it and releasing a chapter a month, and I enjoyed each one!
The book is organized, easy to read and I feel the step-by-step approach is so beneficial. In my counseling with people, very few people can jump into a healthy lifestyle all at once. Taking one step at a time is more often lasting and permanent in their lives. It has been a great tool for me to recommend to people wanting to be healthier and wondering where to start. 12 Steps takes a person by their hand and gently guides them into a healthier lifestyle. I would encourage you to change your health step by step.
Something I Can Do!
Over the years, I have learned a lot of good information about nutrition, but I have never been able to follow through with what I know. So many nutrition gurus make it sound like you need to go to extremes to be healthy, and it’s very difficult to follow these programs and still participate in social events. Robyn insists on good nutrition, but she is not extreme.
The 12 Steps to Whole Foods program is something I can do, with my children! Robyn makes fantastic nutrition available to everyone including single/working moms and families with low budgets.
The program is set up to work at your own pace. If you are overwhelmed, you can go slowly and introduce one step per month. If you are ready to make big changes, you can do everything at once.
Robyn’s recipes taste good! She includes many recipes that reluctant children and adults will enjoy
I tell people about Robyn’s green smoothies all the time. If someone is ready to make changes in their diet, I tell them about the 12 Steps to Whole Foods course. This is a program that I can recommend without worry — it is not extreme, and it is do-able!
— Katie Gibson
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