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beautiful and young at age 70! three ageless examples show the value of good nutrition!

Robyn Openshaw - Mar 05, 2012 - This Post May Contain Affiliate Links

I often hear people judging the raw vegan movement, or its credibility as a lifestyle, because a particular raw vegan doesn’t look good.  In fact, it is often debilitating health conditions that started the person on the path to raw/vegan in the first place. So they may have a long way to travel out of the health/beauty morass they were in from a lifetime of eating the S.A.D.

It’s also confusing to newbies when people are overweight and say they eat raw or vegetarian. This leads me to believe they maybe aren’t practicing what they preach.  Or maybe they eat tons of nuts, seeds, fruit, and cold-pressed oils—and few of the low-calorie options that make a plant-based diet so healthful, like greens, vegetables, fruits, legumes. Greens and vegetables have to be the crux of a life-giving diet.

Or maybe they eat late at night, or they have no “off” switch. I don’t know. There’s a certain famous raw foodist who is beloved by many people, but who is extremely overweight. It’s not great role model stuff—so confusing for people—but it is possible to be overweight eating raw. Possible….but unlikely!

So don’t judge the folks who just got started last year. Take a look at these 3 women who are all about 70 years old. This first one of Annette Larkin, sent to me by my friend Ben, is ASTONISHING—check out what happens from the time you’re my age (45) till you’re 70, you eat all raw food. WOW!!!

(For a baseline of what she WOULD look like, just compare her to her husband, who has continued on the S.A.D. and looks and feels every bit of his 70+ years.)

And there’s Mimi Kirk, voted world’s sexiest vegetarian, who is over 70.

And there’s Donna Gates, author, who is about 65. She’s known for teaching about fermented, probiotic-rich foods and lots of sea vegetables are part of her diet. Long ago she was totally debilitated by candida.

I’m inspired. Are you?

Posted in: Health Concerns, Healthy Weight, Lifestyle, Whole Food

22 thoughts on “beautiful and young at age 70! three ageless examples show the value of good nutrition!”

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  1. Anonymous says:

    I’m uninspired by Donna Gates’ plastic surgery. . . . . Seriously, when I found out she’d had facial plastic surgery, I wasn’t inclined to take how good she looks as evidence of anything.

    1. Sue says:

      I just watched a video of Donna promoting her products. Her pumped lips were so obvious and distracting that I had to quit watching. It would seem that antibiotics and drugs are required when under the knife…so what the message she’s conveying? I would think that the importance of a healthy inner ecology would trump plastic surgery.

    2. Angela says:

      My sentiments exactly! Her recent video on genes shows how far she’s gone with it and can barely talk and express her self. It’s too bad she can’t let herself be as natural on the outside as she is on the inside.

      1. Anonymous says:

        I also don’t think that she looks good, and agree that her lips in particular look scary. It’s super obvious that her lips and face were damaged in plastic surgery. I feel bad for her because outside of this she has a lot of good products and overall advice, but I would never go to Mexico to have surgery like she did because I see what it has done to her. I remember being on a webinar where she was talking about going down to Mexico for this plastic surgery, but then she was mum about it after that. I was kinda shocked that she was doing this as she kept talking about natural approached to everything.
        I’m not sure if it was a purely cosmetic thing or a necessary surgery, but on the surface it appears to be purely cosmetic. If this is the case, then it is very surprising that she of all people, felt so not confident in her looks. It appears that she had Botox, but what people forget is that Botox is a very toxic bacterium that can paralyze your muscles (face muscles in this case). It is not at all safe! It happened to Meg Ryan, and many other movie stars. I feel bad for Donna as to what Botox has done to her facial features because I always thought she was good as she was. I don’t believe it ditching a person though becauses they made a bad decision on something. You have to take into account the entire person, not just one aspect. I always wonder if something like stem cell therapy can reverse any of this for Donna. I truly wish her well because she really is such a nice and caring person.

  2. These three are are perfect examples of raw food power. I believe we are supposed to age gracefully like this instead of deteriorate rapidly like on SAD. We recently had Mini Kirk over for dinner and I can tell you that she is just as beautiful and radiant in person, but what you notice most is her energy. Incredible!

  3. Anonymous says:

    I totally agree that using the ‘veg’ label doesn’t necessarily mean you do it well. I was vegetarian for 5 years (vegan for 2) and I gained weight and became increasingly lethargic, eating a lot more of what I had always eaten minus the animal products.

    My role model authors advocated a lot of fresh vegetables but their recipes for “healthy” food tasted horrible to me (I kid you not — every single recipe I tried tasted bad to me) so their standards of eating seemed completely unattainable. Like many people I got tired of trying to live up that ideal and just abandoned it for a new ideal that seemed more attainable. Discouraged, I went looking for other explanations for my lack of energy and found the blood type diet. At that time I was craving lean beef so the ideology really appealed to me, and I gave it a shot for the type O that I am.

    I felt so much better eating more veggies and less wheat, dairy products and sweets, but I never ate as much animal protein as was recommended because I found it too much for me. And I still didn’t acquire a taste for dark leafy greens. I lost the extra weight and gained a lot of energy almost instantly. After a decade of eating for my blood type, however, I hit a wall where I began to resist eating meat because the thought of it and the taste of it made me nauseous.

    My body was very lean and seemed to be exhausting itself, running in overdrive, and my skin didn’t look clear and I was having a lot of minor health problems. Knowing that minor health problems can lead to major ones I went searching for answers again and I discovered green smoothies (Robyn’s book and another top green smoothie author) and really loved the results of drinking them a few times a week. Hello raw greens and live enzymes!!!

    I found Robyn’s approach less extreme than the other author, and really resonated with her practical approach and her goal of making healthy eating attainable. After a year of smoothies I chose to start Robyn’s 12 Steps to Whole Foods and I have a whole new perspective! I understand now that my first foray into vegetarianism was very unbalanced and wasn’t much different than the S.A.D. I had stopped eating meat but didn’t know how to detox, how to rebuild my health, or how to wean my taste buds off the S.A.D. and onto a plant based diet.

    Looking back, I believe that eating for my blood type was a step in the direction of better health because I dramatically reduced the foods that were stressing my body. Thanks to Robyn I now have the knowledge of how to rebuild my health as well as the practical tools to gradually wean myself off the S.A.D. one month at a time, meanwhile cultivating my taste for truly nourishing, alive foods. I am now close to 100% vegetarian again and I am so much healthier the second time around. Thank you Robyn for helping me make the transition!

  4. Anonymous says:

    Excellent point about being judged on looks alone. But, while these three pinups maybe glamous poster material for healthy eating there are many aging beauties that eat on the darkside, so DNA may have a hand here, too. For healthy ugly people everywhere who are saddled with their parents DNA may I suggest that your insides are beautiful and that is more important…nah, just kidding.

  5. Anonymous says:

    I think that Annette & Mimi look amazing! But I have to say, I’m very disappointed in how Donna Gates looks. It looks like she had a lot of work done to her face. She doesn’t look natural, she looks kind of scary to me. That is not a good advertisement for what she is trying to sell. I think you look amazing Robyn & natural. I think you have to be careful of the people you pick out as role models.

    1. Robyn Openshaw says:

      Leslee, I agree there’s probably some collagen and other work done there. But consider that Donna was extremely ill a few decades ago. You have to see her beautiful nearly 70-y.o. body to appreciate what her good diet has done for her. Not sure if that video I found really shows her head to toe.

  6. Anonymous says:


    I found today’s post very interesting.

    I have been reading your site for over 2 years, have purchased several of your recipe books, and have followed your diet recommendations as well. Over the past five years, I have also tried low-carb diets (both low-carb vegetarian and low-carb with moderate meat, only organic and grass fed), as well as a diet that mixes carbohydrates and proteins to normalize insulin levels. I have tried all of these for a minimum of six months, giving it time to work.

    However, nothing that I’ve tried has helped me lose weight. I need to lose about 100 pounds. I eat healthier than almost everyone I know and I do work out, but the scale won’t budge no matter what I do … not even a green smoothie every morning (with little or no fruit) and a predominatly-green veggie diet the rest of the day. I am insulin resistant, so I know that effects weight loss, but it shouldn’t make it impossible.

    I’ve begun to think that healthy people will be healthy no matter what healthy diet they choose, and maybe I’m destined to be unhealthy. Can you convince me otherwise? I read other’s success stories here on your blog and your site, but can’t seem to find my own success story.

  7. Anonymous says:

    Hmmm, I wonder who the “extremely” overweight raw foodist could be? And exactly what point are you making by mentioning her. People can be healthy with a few extra pounds perhaps you have a bit of a prejudice? I usually find your information helpful and informative.

    1. Robyn Openshaw says:

      Leslie, simply a repair of the credibility of the plant-based lifestyle. (I.e., yes you can be overweight if you’re eating mostly raw plants—but it’s not likely.) We get lots of email about this and it is discussed endlessly in our field.

  8. Jen,

    I understand your pain of eating right, hopefully exercising and not loosing weight. I want to point out that from personal experience I know there can be two other factors hindering your loss.

    1. Emotional issuses from the past speaking messages to the brain that are no longer relative.

    A wonderful web site, which has free worksheets to download, is by Byron Katie.

    B. Food allergies, paying particular attention to the foods that are mostly all GMO’s now: wheat, soy, dairy ( cows eat the GMO foods), canola, and yellow corn.

    I also recommend a food diary; recording when you eat and the amount, coupled with an observation of how you felt, an hour after eating that particular food. When you eat is more important than how much! A skinny little Japanese boy becomes a summo wrestler by : exercising 5 hrs a day on an empty stomach, eating a very healthy soup and then sleeping after eating. Moral of the story:

    eat upon arising, wait 2-3 hours after your last morsal of food goes into your mouth before going to sleep.

  9. Anonymous says:

    I am allergy to spinach that caused me diarrhea problem, I wonder how many people are allergy to spinach? How can I drink the smoothies without spinach?

  10. Anonymous says:

    Comparing the husband and wife is not really fair. they are 2 extremes. I also have to wonder why his wife didn’t have a greater effect on him and why she didn’t feed him better. I can’t help but think even if he ate his meat and her veggies etc he would have done better. He is in typical sad shape of the SAD and i wonder why she was not able to influence him to at least be moderate.

  11. Ah! Mimi Kirk! She’s amazing. I first heard of her a year ago through her daughter. Her daughter and I met in Miami at an Institute for Integrative Nutrition conference.

  12. Anonymous says:

    I am surprised and disappointed at the emphasis on the purely physical side of beauty as well as on the idea that beauty is all about looksl. What the he**? What are the values here? What does this say to our children but merely more of what we see on every magazine at the grocery check out. Hot (i.e. big breasts, small waist, long blonde hair, etc.) is the only way to be attractive or desirable or of value. Yuck! Sexist? Yeah! Ageist? Yeah! Looksist? Yeah!

    What about inner beauty? What about a beautiful character and a beautiful soul? Are we of no worth if we do not meet our society’s standards of beauty, however twisted those may be? Most of us grieve the passing of our youth and not just because of the loss of looking “young”. I know. I am 64 years old. Let’s work on trying to change or at least stem the tide that says young and sexy is the only way to be valued in our world instead of buying into it.

    1. Robyn Openshaw says:

      melissa, please don’t read things into my post that aren’t intended. Lots of types of beauty are important and of course what’s on the inside matters most. My point is that we age more slowly eating raw plants, and visually you can see the effects on these three women. That’s all. I never said long blonde hair, a small waist, and big breasts are the only “attractive.” No way. But if we do want youth and beauty, surgery and salon maintenance do nothing, compared to simply caring well for our temple.

  13. Anonymous says:


    It is pretty strange to say, don’t judge the vegetarians/health people when they look bad, but please do if they look good!

    Donna Gates looked much better before the plastic surgery. I have followed her for years, and have totally written her off since her new baby boomer book.

  14. Anonymous says:

    Dear Jeni

    I hear you and understand to a great degree, your pain and utter frustration! Since 2006 I have struggled while doing my best to follow Robyns program, Daniels Challenge, Kevin Gianni, Green Smoothie Queen, the candida diet, and Dr RitaMarie Loscalzo, with minimal success at conquering the health issues I have dealt with.

    I won’t go into detail here, but in the last 6 weeks have found a sensibile -easy for me- program that is working like magic to balance my blood sugar, get rid of hot flashes, get rid of candida, literally melt the fat and more. It may sound too hard to believe, and I am still shaking my head, but I feel better than I have in 35 years! I am a 55 year old peri-almost menopausal woman.

    I am so grateful to Robyn for all the research and life experience she shares to help us learn and be healthy. I have learned so much from her. I trust her and promote her every chance I get. The things I have learned recently are quite in line with what she teaches with some twists that have made all the difference for me. Check out TurboCharged by Tom and Dian Griesel. I am not associated with them in any way except I bought their book after reading an article on how to change your brain chemestry to burn fat and balance blood sugar and blood pressure.

    If the GSG staff will do it I am happy to have them share my email with you…..Jeni, you deserve to be a healthy person with your own success story and I believe you can be! Don’t give up searching and you will find the answers you need.
    Best to you

    1. Robyn Openshaw says:

      Debbie, maybe you’re trying to follow too many programs. 🙂

  15. Anonymous says:

    Proof positive that a beautiful woman at ANY age is still a beautiful woman! When I woman is young and is lovely, we say that’s genetics and NATURE. However, as she ages and she is still young and lovely, it’s obviously NURTURE. Not every young, lovely woman ages well. I love to look to older women (as opposed to young models in mags selling wrinkle cream–as if) for how they maintained their health & beauty, sound mind, and fitness. This one is my favorite, Oleda Baker:

    Nice post, Robyn. Very inspiring.

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