Recently I posted an article about Clent Manichs, who was able to reduce his weight to 170lbs from 400lbs. You can read about Clents history and green smoothie experiment here.
In this post Clent answers the most popular questions he received after losing weight on a raw, green smoothie diet. People who are struggling with the transition to a green smoothie diet or concerned about how to cope with cravings and the social pressure of being raw, may find Clent’s perspective helpful. I found it interesting to learn that even after such a dramatic change in his weight, Clent doesn’t have hanging skin. This is because the raw food diet helps bring the skin back to life and encourages its natural elastic ability. Victoria Boutenko explains that the Chlorophyll in the greens and especially from fresh wheat grass juice, can be responsible for skin elasticity. So if you are losing weight be sure to have lots of green smoothies and drink wheat grass.
This interview took place in 2008
Q: What are your favorite Green Smoothies?
A: ALL ORGANIC INGREDIENTS- if you can find them. I like to get my produce from the local growers market to save money and find the freshest available. Organic Produce is the most nutritiously grown, and grown without pesticides. There may not be enough nutrients in commercially grown produce. BEWARE!!!!!! STAY HEALTHY!!!!! BUY ONLY ORGANIC
Strawberry-banana-kale : Diabetic friendly:
1 cup strawberries 1 mango
2 bananas handful of blueberries
1/2 bunch kale 1 bunch of dandelion greens
2 cups of pure or filtered water 1/4 tsp. ground cinnamon (optional) tastes good
2 cups of pure or filtered water
My daily favorite that has helped me lose a good portion of weight:
Super high in greens (about 70-80 % greens):
big handful of mixed greens
big handful of spinach
4 leaves of kale (and /or)
4 leaves of collard greens (and/or)
l/4 bunch of dandelion greens (and/or)
1/4 bunch of parsley (and/or)
handful of beet leaves (and/or)
1 large tomato or 2 medium tomato’s
1/2 lemon squeezed
1/2 lime squeezed
4 large strawberries
2 tbls ground flax seed
2 cups of pure or filtered (clean) water
1 cup ice
Makes a full Vita-Mix blender pitcher of 64 fluid ounces. add or remove water for texture.
I use four 16 oz. plastic containers to hold my smoothies and I keep them cold in a ice packed lunch cooler and consume every 2-3 hours until gone. I start my day with a fresh carrot juice with wheatgrass and 1/4 tsp ground cinnamon. 1/2 hour later i begin drinking my green smoothies.
I will snack along the day on veggies and fruits if hungry (gives jaw some exercise). I drink lots of pure water all day long. Once a day I mix barley grass powder in my water especially during work outs to help reduce soreness in muscles. Do not mix powdered greens with smoothie. It will taste nasty! Do not add protein powder to your smoothie. There is a monster amount of excellent proteins in the green smoothie already. Too much protein can damage your kidney’s over time and increase your chances of certain cancers. This formula seems to rip the fat off my body and gives me energy all day. Remember what works for me may not work for you. Although I have received optimal health, extreme weightless and no longer have symptoms of Diabetes while on this program, I will not accept any responsibility for those that follow my program. You must discuss and seek advice from a health care professional and a lifestyle specialist such as Dr. Donato www.dolphindoctor.org before beginning a lifestyle change in your diet. Personally, I am closely monitored by my Physician, Endocrinologist and Dr. Donato. I have my blood work checked regularly and check my blood sugars daily. Those of you that follow my current program, please let me know your progress. I would love to hear from you!
Q: Do you regularly put fruit in green smoothies or consume fresh whole fruit when needing something sweet?
A: I do both, daily.
Q: How did you commit to what some people think of as an extreme choice?
A: First of all I was told by my Doctors in June of 2006 to lose my weight or expect to die sometime in the next 2-4 years. I was willing to try anything to regain my health. My new lifestyle choice has been the only diet that truly worked for me with immediate health results and quick weight loss while feeling fantastic. Next my wife is very supportive and really helped me to stay focused on my goals surrounding my health. Dr. Donato has coached me through every difficult challenge I had to make. Without Dr.Donato’s teachings and support he gives me on a daily/weekly basis, I’m not sure I would have stayed on track. Still today I continue to educate myself with materials and books that I have obtained or purchased from Dr.Donato, Victoria Boutenko and many other sources. Information helps me understand and drive me in the direction to achieve optimal health.
Q: What books have you read on this topic and what resources did you use?
A: Dr. Donato has been a huge resource, he would recommend reading: “The China Study” by T.Colin Campbell, PhD., “Eat to Live” by Joel Fuhrman, MD, “The Food Revolution” by John Robbins for starters. I have read all of the Raw Family book collection and am still watching their DVD collection. The big ones to read are “12 Steps to raw foods – How to End Your Dependency on Cooked Food” and “Green for Life” by Victoria Boutenko. “The Wheatgrass Book” by Ann Wigmore and “Alkalize or Die” by Dr. Theodore A. Baroody. There are so many more. I only read books that have a scientific and medical basis to back them up. Read as much as you can and you will become an expert in no time.
Q: What is a green smoothie?
A: As described by Victoria Boutenko: Green smoothies are 60% ripe organic fruit and 40% organic greens blended well in a high power blender such as a Vita-Mix. If you can’t afford one any high power blender will do. Even a simple $40 blender will do to get you started ( while using a cheap blender expect it to be a little chunky. High power is best. ) Green Smoothies are very nutritious, belong to the most palatable dishes for all humans of all ages and easy to digest. Green smoothies, as opposed to juices, are a complete food because they still have fiber. Many people do not consume enough greens, even those who stay on a raw food diet. To prepare a pitcher of green smoothie takes less than 5 minutes, including cleaning. Of course you have to be careful and slowly increase the amount of smoothies to make sure you enjoy them and avoid food allergies. When consuming your greens in the form of green smoothies, you are greatly reducing the consumption of oils and salt in your diet. Regular consumption of green smoothies forms a good habit of eating greens. After a few weeks of drinking green smoothies, most people start to crave and enjoy eating more greens. Eating enough greens is often a problem with many people, especially children. While fresh is always best, green smoothies will keep in cool temperatures for up to three days, which can be handy at work and while traveling. You may find many more amazing facts and research about green smoothies in Victoria Boutenko’s books, ‘Green For Life’ and ‘Green Smoothie Revolution’.
Q: Have you managed to stick to it and not stray?
A: Yes! Other than experimentation of ingredients based on physical reactions to my body under direction of Dr. Donato
Q: Do you use organic ingredients or what ever is offered at the market?
A: Refer to first question at top! If i can’t find organic sometimes regular produce will do. But please be sure to wash your food very well. Most non-organic produce has been spayed with bug poison (Dioxin).
Q: Where do I start?
A: Educate yourself as much as you can by reading about nutrition daily and find a good beginning foundation such as Dr. Donato’s “Get Healthy Boot Camp”. Boot Camp is a good place to get started on the right path to achieving optimal health.(Even for those of you who are not needing to lose weight), because of it’s structured and guided program as well as interaction between students and instructor. If your not in the Southern Oregon area of Dr. Donato, you can contact Hallelujah Acres by going to www.hacres.com and calling their headquarters to help you locate a health minister in your area. A typical health minister teaches the 85 percent raw 15 percent cooked lifestyle which is the Hallelujah Diet. Dr. Donato simply went the extra mile by also teaching the 100 percent raw lifestyle. Either case, a minimum of 85 percent raw diet will help most people with degenerative diseases such as diabetes, high blood pressure, arrhythmia, MS, heart disease and arthritis…etc, etc. A health minister in your area should be able to give you more information.
Q: Did you follow some of the recipes in the Green For Life book, and which ones?
A: Refer to first question at top. I used the recipes in Green for Life as a guide to experiment with my taste buds and create what works for me. While on a raw diet your taste buds will change often. It may be a good idea to retry some of the recipes you weren’t sure about the first time you tried them. Food sure tastes better now that I’m not on the Standard American Diet (SAD) anymore!
Q: Do you have hanging skin?
A: My skin has been shrinking quit well. I was worried that my skin would be hanging all around my body. I have noticed that even under my arms, inner thigh’s and belly seem to be tightening to the point it is still supporting my fat not yet lost. This is very good news. Once I met a woman who weighed over 500Lbs. before Bariatric surgery, and now she has skin hanging everywhere. She wants to have it removed now. Most people whom eat a Standard American Diet (SAD), and lose a large amount of weight always seem to have sagging or hanging skin around their body. Which may lead to cosmetic surgery. Dr. Donato www.dolphindoctor.org searched everywhere for info on this subject. What he has found is that there is no documentation anywhere that proves that individuals on a SAD have skin shrinkage. Although there is plenty of documentation shown that individuals on a RAW food diet will have their skin suck up and shrink to their natural body mold with very little (if at all) hanging skin. Those that did have some, were able to fill the skin through building muscle mass. The studies show that a RAW food diet helps the skin come alive and bring forth its natural elastic ability back to life. Raw food diets may help your organs rejuvenate back to when we were children and most people don’t know that our skin is the largest organ of our body. I spoke to Victoria Boutenko the other day and she explained that what she has learned about skin shrinking during weight loss is, that the Chlorophyll in the greens and especially from fresh wheat grass juice, can be responsible. So if you are losing weight be sure to have lots of green smoothies and drink wheat grass everyday! This is exactly what is happening to me! Because of my natural skin shrinkage, I know I will not have to have any cosmetic surgery! YEAH!!!
Q: How do you handle cravings?
A: I eat more food and drink lots of water. Cravings in general are detox reactions and more clean water w/juicing will help you detox faster. I completely lost my SAD cravings around my 6-8th week of my 100% Raw lifestyle. Having someone to talk to helps too. Find somebody to share your emotions with, in regards to your diet. Another raw fooder such as a partner or spouse is ideal. Ask your health minister about support groups. 6-8 weeks went by fast so I hope it will for you too! What’s 6-8 weeks to get your health back? I drive by all my favorite fast food restaurants all the time now and don’t even miss it. Once you are truly 100% RAW for at least a couple of month’s, you don’t even look back! Once in Optimal Health, why would you want to be sick again?
Q: Did you use any powdered greens for your smoothies?
A: Yes, barley grass powder and it tastes nasty! Powdered greens should only be mixed w/water on an empty stomach because your body won’t absorb the powdered greens well when fiber is present in your stomach. Drink during workouts and exercise. Not with smoothies!
Q: Did you go through a detox?
A: My first few weeks were awful! I caught a cold and a flu! Lots of terrible headaches, pimples, loss of energy and tiredness. Detox’s are the release of stored poison in our bodies. I did a colon cleanse and was amazed at how much build-up there was. When we have clogged plumbing our bodies end up in storing the toxins we eat. Some people get very sick during detox and go to the hospital for help not realizing the illness is just part of detox. Detox is no fun, yet well worth it in the end because now I feel great and my body is working much better now!
Q: Once starting the exercise what did you do to start?
A: I began a weekly exercise and weight training regime with Dr. Donato once I got under 300Lbs. Find a good physical trainer to help you learn to lift weight’s properly and try to get as much cardio/aerobic strength workouts as possible each week. I hit the Gym 3 days a week with aerobic/aerobic exercise daily. Treadmill walk/run even at the local high school track and use Fit-10 equipment daily. Dr.Donato promotes Fit-10 in his Boot Camps.
Q: How come I can’t find Valerie Winters Blog?
A: Not sure. It seems she has removed the blog permanently herself. She has been an inspiration to me and I wish her well. Hope she will let us know how she is doing sometime.
Q: Do you prepare the smoothies for the day at one time and if so how well of fresh were the smoothies through out the day? Is there any particular brand/style of container you might use to keep them fresh? (I would make them in the morning then take them to work … so what do you think?)
A: Refer to first answer at top! Yes make them in the morning and take them wherever you go in a cooler lunch box to keep them cold and fresh. Find a container/s that suit your cooler lunch box needs and tuff cold packs around the green smoothie. I used one smoothie for breakfast and then took another 3 containers with me for the day. Drink the green smoothies every 2-3 hours even if your not hungry, the more you consistently consume the more fat you can burn. Don’t over eat! Eat till satisfied.
Q: How often do you change your green smoothies? If you used the same ingredients for a while, did it make any difference as to changing up the variety?
A: Yes, I use a different pattern of greens each week. Sometimes it depends on what is available. The reason I use a variety of greens is because greens have a high alkalinity, so we need to switch them up as our ingredients so not to have any harmful effects from the same greens every day. Victoria Boutenko explains it better in her book “Green for Life” (or here on this blog). Check it out! The flavors are different every time I make a different batch. Experiment what you like the most. Be creative and change greens even as much as daily but defiantly weekly.
Q: One big factor for me is budget … if you don’t mind me asking … how much money do you spend a week? (and I presume you did the same format every day and not do anything different on the weekends.)
A:Yes, I use the same format weekly because it is easier to plan my meals for the week. In the beginning I spent a lot purchasing all of my equipment. Juicer, Vita-mix Blender, dehydrator, etc….. Now I spend no more than I did when I was on the SAD. In fact I spend less because I never go out to restaurants or fast food anymore. That also saves gas in in your car and utility bill because you no longer use your stove to cook. Rumor has it that it costs too much for organic food. The truth is, when I go to the store now I shop the produce section and leave, because there is nothing else I need to buy unless it is something other than food. Try to find a store and growers market that you can get all your supplies and raw foods in one trip. You will save money on gas too! The amount I spend, balances out in the end!
Q: What kind of food enzymes did you take?
A: Try to find a broad spectrum formula/Enzyme-Active. Dr. Donato has me take them to help take the load off of my Liver. Enzymes help soak up the poisons stored in my fat cells rapidly dumping in the blood stream as I lose weight. Part of ongoing Detox! Food Enzymes are also essential when eating cooked food. (during Boot Camp) Cooking kills the natural enzymes. Taking a supplement will help your food digest easier and help your colon to pass the food.
Q: Will I get enough protein drinking green smoothies?
A: Yes! As far as protein, do not worry. It is my opinion that some individuals in our Government have lead us to believe that we have to eat meat and dairy products for the best protein. Got Milk? As our Govt rakes in the dough on the foods that are slowly killing us, we are so blinded by the illusions of reality. Even our Doctor’s only learn 1-4 hours. of nutritional studies over a whole 8 years of college and only learn to sell you an FDA approved diet. In general Doctors aren’t taught about proteins in live foods. If they were, we would have less sick people around because we would be taught to eat less meat and dairy and more freshly grown food. I have read and seen documentation to back this up. Dr. Donato (www.dolphindoctor.org) has taught us that everything has protein and we only need 25 grams a day to sustain life. More then 70 grams a day can damage your organs over time. Body builders only need 70 grams of protein to build muscles and they can get the best from greens, broccoli and fruit, ect. Have you ever seen a large beefy cow or an ape weighing over 800lbs. eating meat? No they eat lots of greens and fruit. Think about all the body builders slamming 300-600 grams before working out. Eventually they will die from some form of cancer early in life. Think about it, how many body builders do you see walking around in their 60’s or 70’s. Not many! I have been building muscle for two month’s now and haven’t eaten any meat or dairy for five month’s 100% RAW no cooked food. Did you know a peach may have the most protein over all fruit. Leafy greens have the highest protein they are natures perfect food.
One molecule of wheat grass juice is like a fresh blood transfusion. There are enough vitamin and minerals in the greens, fruit and veggies, that you never need to take any vitamin supplements. Most of us have lowered the natural hydrochloric acid levels in our stomach. It is difficult for your stomach to create vitamin B12. If you drink green smoothies on a regular basis you can build the acids back up relieving heartburn and raising B12 from food. So B12 supplements should be taken regularly for at least a year or more. Nothing else. A 100% RAW food diet including green smoothies everyday with regular exercise should be sufficient. Exercise will help guarantee you won’t lose muscle mass. You will lose weight as a natural side effect and never lose any muscle mass! Fruits, veggies and greens are alkaline foods. Legumes, nuts and seeds should be eaten in moderation because of high acid and high protein. Except for Almonds. They are a positive 3.14 alkaline. These are all live proteins for the body. Meat and dairy are very acidic and dead proteins. Your body takes acid and stores it into Fat cells. If you cut the acid foods from your diet, you will lose fat off the body like melting butter. If you have a handful of almonds(70 grams of Fat and +3.14 alkaline) and a pork chop (35 grams of fat and -53 acid) your body will pass the almonds without weight gain. Yet the pork being acidic, will store into fat straight on your body. Yuk! Strange that the almonds have more fat yet the pork is the one making you gain weight!
Q: How did you handle temptations or problems that may occur with members of your family who are still eating the standard American diet way?
A: Refer to ‘how to handle cravings-above’. Explain to your family about your new lifestyle choice and how important it is to you! (Because you are trying to get your health back!) Ask them to support you and give you encouragement. My family helped me by mostly eating at different times or understood my eating choices while with them at the table. If you are still preparing the family food try not to taste the food and maybe you can have a smoothie while preparing. If you taste the food the salts and oils may pull you back in. Be strong and remember your goals. Have a picture in your kitchen that helps you remind yourself of your goals. One individual wrote to me: “Your name is on my fridge as an inspiration to courageously continue the “eat your greens” diet and hike like I truly want to do with stamina, strength and spirit with this green healthy diet to sustain me.”
Q: Do you ever get tired of green smoothies?
A: No, not yet anyway! Although I use the same recipe (in general) I use a wide variety of greens and mix up my selection of fruit in the smoothies. Everyday is something new! If you get board with your smoothie try something different. Green Smoothie Revolution has over 150 recipes to chose from. You may Surprise yourself!
Medical and Personal Disclaimer:
The information in this email is not intended to replace a one-on-one relationship with a qualified health care professional and is not intended as medical advice. It is intended as a sharing of knowledge and information from the education and experience of Clent Manich and the individuals mentioned here in. I encourage you to make your own health care decisions based upon your research and in partnership with a qualified health care professional. Take what you can use (learn) and leave the rest. My political points of view and opinions are never intended to offend anyone!