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St. Louis Mama Loses 40 Pounds and Raises a Healthy Eater!

Robyn Openshaw, MSW - Oct 11, 2013 - This Post May Contain Affiliate Links


mona lisa baby

Ellen’s sweet baby boy enjoying his green smoothie.

In our entries for the “Raising Healthy Eaters” contest was this sweet and amazing story from Ellen S. of St. Louis, Missouri. I love hearing that some of those who end up on my site, or in my lecture tour audiences, don’t just mix in a green smoothie to their Standard American Diet (which is still a good start, of course), but actually make a major, comprehensive lifestyle shift. I think you’ll be inspired by Ellen’s story:

First, I wanted to say THANK YOU! I came across your blog last winter when I was searching the internet to determine the root of my infant’s symptoms–constant runny nose, ear infections and overall discomfort.  I knew something wasn’t right when he had so much trouble with breastfeeding AND formula feeding. I wish I connected the dots before I gave up on nursing him.

Luckily, you were coming to my town soon so signed up for the seminar immediately!  I went in January of this year and never felt the meaning of the phrase “right time, right place” more than I did then.  I may have gone with the intentions of healing my family through nutrition, but I soon realized I was there because I needed healing–of mind, body and soul.

I had been ignoring the fact that I was unhappy with my lifestyle in so many ways.  I ignored the fact that I was 26 with chronic back, knee and shoulder pain. Ignoring weekly migraines and headaches almost daily. Ignoring my insomnia and permanent dark circles under my eyes. Ignoring my food addiction and the 25 extra pounds from 2 pregnancies that I had kept on.

Ignoring the wall I was beginning to build between my husband because I couldn’t even look at myself in the mirror. All those emotions came flooding to me as I sat there listening to you speak. But as soon as I told myself I needed a lifestyle overhaul, I let my fear of failure dry up my tears and tell myself it would just be too hard.

Just minutes later, you called my ticket number and announced I had won the BlendTec.

adventures-junk-food-dude-720x720I was out of excuses, I knew what I needed to do. Since that day, I spent countless hours researching, planning and praying. I started small and got rid of the obvious crap in the house that was sabotaging a healthy way of life. And I read The Adventures of Junk Food Dude to my boys, then ages 2.5 and 9 months, every night.

About 3 months later in March (and a few failed attempts), I finally woke up ready one day.  With your inspiration and Dr. Fuhrman’s Eat to Live, I set out on my journey, dragging my boys along!

Fast forward to May and I was 40 pounds lighter, working out 4-5 times a week, actually SLEEPING at night, and finally feeling like I was living with no chronic pain.  I was 165 lbs. before my children, 190 after…and now 150!  But possibly the most exciting outcome was the health of my boys.

I switched to goat’s milk (as you did) for my youngest, and what seemed like instantly, his symptoms disappeared.  And my toddler was surprisingly thriving on this diet change.  I thought for sure we’d struggle to get him to let go of his chicken nuggets and extra sharp cheddar cheese (and we did, at times, struggle), but within months he was eating like Green Smoothie Guy and NOT Junk Food Dude!

I am proud to say he walks through grocery stores now shouting “that’s NOT healfy, Mama!” Unfortunately, he is usually pointing at items in other customers’ carts. We are working on “discretion.”

During this time we also discovered our son’s Sensory Processing Disorder.  It affects almost every aspect of our daily life, especially meal time.  I used to worry constantly about his diet, because he would not eat certain foods due to the texture, temperature or appearance of a food, and he constantly had tummy troubles.

Once I introduced him to smoothies, my worries vanished.  He LOVED smoothies and was finally getting veggies of all varieties in his diet. Now, he craves veggies and snacks on them all day long.  Smoothies have also become of trick for our once chaotic bedtime struggle.  His occupational therapist mentioned that sucking through straws is extremely calming, and a great trick for kids when overstimulated.

The light bulb went on and I added a “healthy chocolate cake smoothie” (as he calls it) of banana, cocoa powder and vanilla unsweetened almond milk to our nightly routine.

These are just a few ways this lifestyle has affected our family and I see more daily. […] I am so extremely grateful for you and your team’s hard work that I sing your praises wherever I go!

Posted in: Healthy Weight, Relationships, Whole Food

4 thoughts on “St. Louis Mama Loses 40 Pounds and Raises a Healthy Eater!”

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  1. Donna Kilpatrick says:

    I was there that Sunday afternoon and can put myself right back there today. Brought tears to my eyes as I read. Ellen was definitely the one of the 140 that was there that needed the blender, right place, right time. Robyn I know that this is why you do what you do. I was one that had driven 3 hours to come but fortunately my daughter lives in St Louis so it was no problem to come back on Sunday. I made a life change 5 years ago to a raw vegan anti-fungal diet and am reversing my MS. I teach others what I have done and to reach individuals like Ellen is why I do what I do. If you come back to St Louis, I will bring a bus with people from Lake Ozark, Jefferson City and Columbia. I can tell them my story but hearing yours is just so much more effective. Thank you for doing all that you do for us.

    1. Robyn says:

      Donna, I’m so glad to hear from you because I have felt terrible about those who drove 3 hours EVER SINCE! I am back in St. Louis Feb. 7, doing two lectures—Fri night and Sat morning at Faith Church doing the green smoothie show for 1,500 people. Then Sat. night doing my new lecture HOw to Eat Right In the Real World…..will announce in next week’s newsletter. I totally believe that massive diet change can reverse neurological degenerative diseases, congrats! Not everyone is willing to make the change. You are awesome! See you in Feb. 🙂

  2. H says:


    I know this post has nothing to do with this… BUT.. I was just reading a pregancy book and they are saying that you HAVE to have crazy amounts of protein your first couple of months of pregnancy… What are your thoughts on that.. And do you have ANY natural remedies for morning sickness??


  3. One of the best ways to cleanse is through a juice or liquids only fast. Don’t get overwhelmed thinking it has to be 2 weeks or longer without food. Even a 1-3 day juice fast is very effective at giving the digestive system a nice rest and allowing for deeper cleansing and healing. Try juicing mainly green vegetables in a base of celery or cucumber to avoid excess sugar, add in some medicinals like turmeric, ginger, cayenne, Himalayan salt, ionic minerals, blue green algae, or even medicinal mushroom powders or tinctures. If the green juice is too much by itself try adding in an apple or a few carrots. The acidity of lemon or lime juice also really helps cut the bitterness of greens. Along with your green juices you may want to include things like fresh coconut water, herbal teas, or fermented/cultured drinks like kefir and kombucha. If liquids only seems a bit daunting consider doing a blended foods diet for a few days or a week. This plan may include green smoothies with the addition of fruit along with savory blended vegetable soups. If it is cold where you live you may also enjoy warm miso broth, or you can gently heat your blended soups on the stove until warm to the touch. Leaving processed foods by the wayside and moving into a whole foods only diet may be enough of a cleanse in and of itself for some people. By simply saying no to processed foods we leave behind harmful ingredients such as refined sugars, salt, preservatives and manufactured chemicals which can add toxicity to our bodies. Once we stop the input of these toxic ingredients into our bodies we begin to detoxify from them pretty rapidly. Simply doing this along with increasing your intake of pure water will give the body a chance to cleanse, especially if you incorporate some green vegetable juices and green smoothies into your routine.

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