Friday, March 2, 2012

Resolution 7-2012: Green Smoothies

I'm happy.

I had a whole page written about this statement, and deleted it. I'm leaving it up there because it is true. Being happy isn't what I want to write about today. I think I've waxed vomitous about being happy, and what it takes. Today I'm writing about things that make me happy.

Food is important to me. Those who know me personally would say food may be the biggest love/hate relationship in my life. I have a disordered eating pattern (which isn't quite an eating disorder, but if you want to get into that discussion, email me). I have no ability to gauge on my own if I am eating enough, too much, or too little. I love sweet stuff, which happens to be bad for my body (I don't process sugar very well. No one in my family does). My best bet is to keep a daily food journal to keep myself in healthy ranges. This is similar to my inability to distinguish lengths of time: I need a clock to make certain I'm working with in my time parameters.

I've been listening to a teleconference about wellness, and one of the major pieces of body wellness is food intake. As I was listening to different people talk about how they live their most vibrant, healthy life, I kept hearing the words "green juice". In the course of one week, I had heard no fewer than four people mention green juice, or smoothies, and the positive affects this ritual had on their health and their bodies. I was working on breaking out of a cycle of eating too much sugar, and other foods that were making me feel sluggish. I thought I might give it a try.

I started to research recipes for green smoothies, as I appreciate fiber, and I wasn't about to invest in a juicer (I have two small blenders). In a matter of minutes, I felt more guilt about eating meat than I have felt in the last two years. I was a vegetarian, and I discovered animal protein makes me feel good. I don't need tons of meat, but a little chicken, a few eggs, fish, and occasionally some red meat helps keep me clicking. Most of the information related to green smoothies was raw food and vegan propaganda. I don't see anything wrong with being a vegan, but the lifestyle isn't for everyone, and something like green drinks should be accessible to everyone. Most people I know would have given up immediately.

The second guilty charge: I was  bad for drinking caffeine. I like coffee, I like green tea. I don't drink soda. I haven't been a regular consumer of soda for years. Please don't lump my relatively healthy habits of tea and a little coffee in with something like soda.

In spite of these heavy charges, I persevered in my search for a reasonable recipe for a green smoothie, and information on how it might benefit me. Finally, I found some information on the website of our local health food chain (we don't have Whole Foods where I live), and it was easy. A leafy green of some sort (or in my case, a blend of spinach, kale, and romaine lettuce), blueberries, and water. Add some other vegetables if you like, some ginger, and some other stuff as the spirit moves me. Easy.

And then the blender issue hit. Every site recommended the purchase of a really expensive blender. I started having blender envy. I started worrying that maybe my little Magic Bullet blender, gifted to me by a good friend, wasn't up for the green smoothie challenge. I was going to try it, and if it didn't work... I would go to Craigslist to find a solution.

Here is the long a short of this post: if you think it is going to make you feel good, and help you live your most vibrant health just a little more, try green smoothies. You don't have to be completely committed to a raw or vegan lifestyle. You don't need a fancy $500 blender. My Magic Bullet actually works really well. In fact, the cups in comes with are pints, which means two of those a day, and I'm drinking the recommended amount of green goodness. Sure, I have to do a little more chopping, and maybe spend a little more time blending, but the results are worth the effort, and the extra money spent on an expensive blender doesn't seem to be worth it right now.

Green smoothies make me happy, if only because they make me think I'm doing something really good for myself. I'm glad I didn't get discouraged by the hype surrounding the drinks, and there is a lot of hype. I'm not a vegan. I'm not a raw foodie (I was for a month or two at one point, and it was hard), but I've given myself permission to be a green smoothie girl. This morning, I also blended my morning pint with green tea. I feel supercharged now.


PS- I do sort of really love the idea of writing about this in a blog about living a juicy life... but then again, I like puns.

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