The Green Smoothie – Gimmicky Green Sludge? or Human Rocket Fuel?

Green Fruit & Vegetable Smoothie
Green Fruit & Vegetable Smoothie

At times, I can still hear my mother’s voice in my head saying “Chuba you can’t leave the table until you finish your vegetables”. And like you (probably), I resented it. I hated vegetables because they were either terribly bitter, or didn’t taste like anything. I couldn’t understand why an otherwise wonderful human being would often torture me by insisting I eat the very things she knew I didn’t like. As I grew older, I noticed that many doctors and naturopaths in the healing community also spoke of the virtues of vegetables. We’ve all heard the rallying cries: “Eat your vegetables regularly because they are good for you”. “You should have nine servings of fruits and vegetables each day”. “Each person requires 9 cups of green vegetables each day to stay healthy”. Although people continually point out the many health benefits of vegetables as a strong reason to consume them regularly, very few seem to be able to precisely explain why they are so good for you. This perceived weakness in the pro-vegetable consuming argument was what I used for several years to convince myself that the whole “eat your vegetables” rhetoric was just a load of bollocks concocted by sadistic adults who took offense to the freedom young people enjoy. So on and on I went, feeding my body whatever the heck I wanted for many years until I came to my senses just shy of my 30th birthday.

In my early 20s, I was a seasoned “snackologist” with a heavy specialization in sweets. I often joke with my closest friends that even though I spent many years in school studying science and engineering, they were actually just hobbies. The core exercise of all those years of schooling was kicking a soccer ball around and perfecting my ability to eat an inordinate amount of sugar laden snacks. On most typical days, I would have a slice of cake in the morning right before soccer practice, wash down half a pizza with a ton of coffee for lunch, and indulge in 2 cheeseburgers and fries for dinner. I was young, extremely fit, and without a legitimate care in the world. My body functioned perfectly and I had total control over it. I rarely ever got ill for the better part of a decade and never really set foot in a dentist’s office. On the surface, everything was all hunky dory and I remained impervious to injury or serious illness for many years. I bossed soccer games and could get up to 24 repetitions of a 200lb bench press over 3 sets even though I weighed a mere 185lbs. For all practical purposes, I was invincible… in my own head at least.

In my mid 20’s, some cracks in my physical suit of armor (my body) started to show. The signs of inadequate nutrition started to manifest as cryptic SOS messages from my body which I ignored. I started experiencing migraine attacks after intense soccer matches and sparring sessions and noticed a general decline in my immune system’s defense to the common cold. I also suffered a painful groin injury in addition to the multitude of niggling injuries I was carrying. Each time I got one of these signals, I would do the required course of medication and/or physical therapy to patch myself up just well enough to keep going. In spite of what in retrospect seems like a plethora of glaring warning signals, I never took the time to delve deep and uncover a root cause. Little did I know that the damage I was accumulating because of my own hubristic neglect of proper nutrition would have a devastating effect just before my 4th decade on earth began.

A couple of months shy of my 28th birthday, I was in the middle of a sublime game of soccer on a beautifully manicured field in Palo Alto. I was in the “zone” and bossing the game until I freakishly tore my ACL (anterior cruciate ligament) and fell to the turf in a crumpled heap. As devastating as the injury was, it was even more frustrating because it wasn’t caused by any outside force or physical contact. I literally tore my ligament during a simple deceleration event… albeit from top speed. When I finally pushed past the anger and depression caused by this serious injury, I went into a deeply introspective mode in an attempt to uncover its root cause. Although I tried hard to ignore it, one specific topic kept coming back to me in my meditation sessions as a possible cause of the apparent weakness of my ACL. And that topic was good nutriton… or in my case, the lack thereof.

It turns out mother was right about regularly eating vegetables (it’s really annoying how often what your parents tell you in youth seems to ring increasingly true the older you get). I finally accepted that I had to somehow get more vegetables in my diet but how was I going to do that? I hated the taste and sight of them. I passively aggressively procrastinated for a couple of months until I saw a TV infomercial one morning during one of my full body stretch sessions. It was about a strange mini blender called a nutribullet which allows you to turn any combination of vegetables and fruits into a drink by pulverizing them for a little over a minute. A light bulb came on in my head. I was intrigued because this meant that instead of sitting around and chewing on leaves for 30+ minutes everyday (which I was sure to avoid), I could just drink them in under 2. That evening, I stopped at a Target store on my way home from work and bought a nutribullet. In retrospect, this was the turning point at which my health and wellbeing took a major turn for the better.

The first smoothies I made using my brand new nutribullet tasted horrible, but I “closed my eyes” and drank them because the chalky bitter taste I endured for 2 minutes every morning was a lot better than suffering another wrecked knee.

Ingredients for the Chubanator Smoothie Version 1.0

  • 1 cup of Spinach
  • 2 X frozen Strawberries
  • 4 X 3 inch long celery stalks
  • 1 cup of iced water
  • 2 X ice cubes

The ingredients above will make a smoothie between 12 – 16 oz in volume

After drinking my pilot smoothie concoction for about a month, I wanted to gouge my eyes out. It didn’t taste good to me and there was no way I could sustain this for the long haul. I needed to somehow make it better, so I enrolled at the University of Google to look for answers. This time, I would carefully study what my fellow human beings knew about green smoothies and incorporate those ideas into my own smoothie making process to make my smoothies more nutritious and better tasting. After many months of trial and error I finally came up with a smoothie recipe that delivered more nutrition and tasted much better in general. I also upgraded my blender from a nutribullet to a more powerful and durable blendtec total blender.

Ingredients for the Chubanator Smoothie Version 2.0

  • 2 cups of Spinach or Kale
  • 2 Frozen Strawberries
  • 4 X Peeled Baby Carrots
  • 2 tablespoons of avocado
  • 1 X 5mm thick slice of ginger (about the same diameter as an american quarter)
  • A quarter of an orange
  • 1 cup of unsweetened almond milk
  • 1 scoop of designer whey gourmet chocolate protein powder
  • A drizzle of honey to sweeten
  • 4 – 6 ice cubes

The ingredients above will make a smoothie between 20 – 24 oz in volume

Version 2.0 of the Chubanator smoothie tasted much better and was a lot more nutritious than version 1.0. I still drink it everyday till this very day and haven’t looked back since. After the first 6 months of consuming what I have now come to affectionately call “human rocket fuel” everyday, I noticed a lot of benefits to my physical health and well being. I’ve regained much of my athleticism and seem to look a bit younger than my actual age because my skin looks more radiant and I rarely ever catch the common cold. I’m convinced that the more alive the food you eat is, the more alive you will be as a person. The ingredients of the Chubanator smoothie v2.0 were carefully selected because together, they constitute a full symphony of nutrients that aid general health and well being.

The green smoothie has turned out to be more “human rocket fuel” than “gimmicky green sludge” for me. I urge you to add it to your diet because it is an easy way to get a lot of fruit and vegetable servings into your system in a readily digestible form. It only takes a few minutes to prepare one each day, and it will do your body a world of good. The only thing I regret about discovering the green smoothie is that I didn’t start consuming them earlier on in life. I have a strong feeling that if I had started my green smoothie kick earlier, I would have avoided all the painful injuries and illnesses that I have suffered through. I hope you will learn from my mistakes and use this knowledge to your advantage. Life is already difficult, might as well give yourself the best shot at being healthy enough to meet its challenges head on.

If you have read this far, you are probably the curious intelligent kind that wants to know exactly what benefits the particular ingredients of the Chubanator smoothie Version 2.0 offer to the human body and your general health. For types like you, I’ve written it all out below. Till next time my friends… stay well.

Health Benefits and Nutrition Facts of the Chubanator Smoothie Version 2.0

  1. 2 cups of Kale (Vitamin A, C, K, Fiber)
    • Vitamin A is excellent for maintaining good eyesight.
    • Vitamin C is critical for a strong immune system, ligaments, and tendons.
    • Vitamin K is important for the blood clotting mechanism in the body and for maintaining healthy skin.
    • Fiber is remarkably important for your digestive system. Makes going to the bathroom (for #2) a lot easier.
  2. 2 frozen strawberries (Vitamin C, Fiber)
    • Vitamin C is critical for a strong immune system, ligaments, and tendons.
    • Fiber is remarkably important for your digestive system. Makes going to the bathroom (for #2) a lot easier.
  3. 4 baby carrots (Beta carotene, Fiber)
    • Beta carotene promotes good eyesight and healthy skin.
    • Fiber is remarkably important for your digestive system. Makes going to the bathroom (for #2) a lot easier.
  4. 2 X Tablespoons of Avocado (Omega 9 fatty Acids)
    • Omega 9 fatty acids may reduce the risk of heart attack or stroke.
  5. 1 X 5mm thick slice of ginger (about the same diameter as an american quarter)
    • Ginger does wonders for reducing inflammation in the body.
    • Ginger is also very good for strengthening the immune system and fighting off the common cold.
  6. A quarter of an orange (Vitamin C, Fiber)
    • Vitamin C is great for a healthy immune system, ligaments, and tendons.
    • Fiber is remarkably important for your digestive system. Makes going to the bathroom (for #2) a lot easier.
  7. 1 cup of unsweetened almond milk (Calcium, Vitamin D, Vitamin E, Magnesium, Manganese, Vitamin B-12)
    • Calcium is Important for maintaining strong bones and teeth
    • Vitamin D is also important for strong bones and teeth. Studies show it may also play a role in reducing cancer risk
    • Magnesium is important for strong healthy muscles, ligaments and tendons
    • Vitamin B-12 is important for the regulation of a healthy nervous system and heart health
    • Manganese is important for maintaining connective tissue (muscles, ligaments, tendons etc)
  8. 1 scoop of designer whey gourmet chocolate protein powder (Vitamin D, Calcium, Essential amino acids, Zinc, healthy cholesterol)
    • Vitamin D is important for strong bones and teeth. Studies show it may also play a role in reducing cancer risk
    • Calcium is Important for maintaining strong bones and teeth
    • Essential amino acids are important for building strong muscles, ligaments, skin. Amino acids are also vitally important for many biochemical reactions that sustain the human body.

 

Without Wax
Oyolu B.C. Ph.D.
chubaoyolu.org
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