Tag Archive | greens

Don’t forget your Greens !


Don’t forget your Greens ! 

There  are also some other voices who question these ( repeated ) recommendations ”  don’t forget your greens ”
Read for example skeptical articles like :

http://blog.rawgosia.com/are-greens-necessary-on-a-raw-food-diet      personal reflections of Iheartfruit forum member Gosia

http://rawschool.com/2011/do-we-need-to-eat-greens/     by Nora Lenz

My own diet is very high in fruit , that is : more  fruit than the average person would eat ( the average person considers fruit  as a dessert and not as a complete meal ) . As for vegetables / greens : only  some specific fruit-like vegetables ( like almost daily sweet bell peppers ,  sometimes fennel bulb … ) , cooked vegetables ( like half-cooked carrots , (  almost ) daily white potatoes and sweet potatoes , onions , seaweed {1} , black  and white fungi , sometimes other fungi , sometimes some broccoli ( stems  )  , sometimes some cauliflower ( stems )  , sometimes some pumpkin ,  sometimes some beans ( little )  … pff… really , that’s more or less  all ) , and greens  ( like celery(stalks) {2} … and that’s more or less  the only real greens to survive my dietary references ! )
Well , the only  reason is that I am not a big enthusiast of a heap of lettuce , eggplant ,  cucumbers , … I never feel the craving to buy them when shopping ( Salad and  lettuce : I mostly like the young crispy immature leaves ) . {3}

But hey  , that’s how I managed and manage to thrive on my own self-tailored  ovo-vegetarian – almost vegan – almost raw diet , without any serious weight  loss , without any loss of energy , and without any health issues . A diet  without any animal milk products at all , without any vegetal pseudo-milks ,  without soya products ( only some fermented soya ) , without refined processed  cereals / grains  , almost never some specific (pseudo) grains , no  white sugar , … ( I probably forget to list some no-no’s … ) My diet is  still flexible for changes and possible improvements , although the big lines  have remained more or less unchanged since 2009-2010  ( as I noticed  myself )

Everybody somehow tailors his / her diet , for example Tracy  Russell says about her diet :

I eat a high-raw, vegan diet based on  fresh fruits, vegetables, nuts, seeds and supplemented with healthy cooked,  whole foods.  I’ve found this to be a sustainable diet and one that just  about anybody can aspire to .”
http://www.incrediblesmoothies.com/ ( homepage , about  author )

I ran across a beautiful commentary, among the 264 commentaries  on an article ” The scary truth about vegan diets ” :
( were people got  sometimes very emotionally entangled in conflicting diet discussions  )

Can’t we just accept the fact that everybody has a slightly  different physiological makeup , nutritional requirements and energy output and  there is no one-size-fit all diet ? If going vegan works for you , great , I am  happy for you , but it doesn’t mean it works for the rest of the world (…) We  would all be much healthier if we spend more time to appreciate and be thankful  of the wonderful things in life instead of bickering about what is the  healthiest diet

{1}  http://www.rawfoodyhealthnut.blogspot.com/2012/09/eat-sea-weed-many-health-implications.html    ( by Helen Kirby Roach )

{2} http://fresh-network.typepad.com/fresh_network_blog/2012/09/celery-from-hate-to-love.html   ( by Helen Kirby Roach )

{3} http://fresh-network.typepad.com/fresh_network_blog/2012/09/5-tips-for-getting-your-kids-to-eat-their-leafy-greens.html
( by Karen Ranzi )

http://eco18.com/powerhouse-greens/     ( by  Sue Taggart )
http://eco18.com/eat-your-fruits-veggies-for-immunity-boosting-antioxidants/       ( by Lauren Verini )

Some personal reflections that I wrote on the Iheartfruit Forum on September 23 , 2012


Douglas GRAHAM and Frederic PATENAUDE on greens

I have looked it up what Douglas GRAHAM and Frederic PATENAUDE are saying about the  fruit-greens issue,  exactly in their own words :  ( all the bold letter emphasis in the quoted texts are added by me )


”  I do not, nor have I ever, recommended a diet exclusively made up of  fruit. This is because everyone I have ever met who attempts to sustain him or  herself exclusively on fruit for an extended time runs into serious health  challenges. Those who attempt to live on just one fruit, such as watermelon,  oranges, or tomatoes, run into similar health challenges, but more rapidly than  those who vary their fruits. I have seen people irrevocably lose their health in  this fashion, and I have seen people die by clinging to this premise of eating  only fruit. (…)

Fruits come closer to meeting our nutritional  needs, on every level, than any other group of foods. you try to eat only fruit  for months or years at a stretch, you run the risk of gradually running low on  certain vital nutrients, primarily minerals [/b]. This is particularly true for  active people and those who live in warm climates.
These minerals  are best provided via the consumption of tender green leafy vegetables.  I recommend that people consume about 1 to 3% of their total calories in the  form on greens. For most men, that equates to almost a pound of greens per day,  on average, less for an average woman.
Often, a person will embark upon an  all-fruit program and feel quite well. Their mistake is making a long-term  decision based upon a short-term experiment. We would expect anyone who reduces  the fat content of their diet by eating more fruit to feel better initially.  High carbohydrates and low fat in the diet suits us extremely well.  However, undermineralization takes a subsequent toll on their  health. When health problems finally do hit overzealous frutarians,  they often respond to the problem by eating more fruit. (…)

Consuming  young tender greens does not have to be a daily part of one’s lifestyle. When  plain lettuce or celery sounds and tastes appealing, you can be sure that you  are ready for some greens. Many people find that after eating fruit for a few  days or weeks that greens are really a welcome treat. (…)

A  varied diet of fruits, vegetables, and a moderate amount of nuts and seeds tends  to result in the best of health and nutrition. Whole, fresh, ripe, raw,  organic plants are the most healthful for us. While simplicity at mealtime  usually provides the conditions required for ideal digestion, variety in the  diet over time yields optimum nutrition. (… )

In closing, I  would strongly recommend against the 100% fruitarian experiment . I do  believe that eating the fruit of the season is a good program. In mango season,  for example, mangos predominate heavily in my diet. In persimmon season, I will  make many a meal of just persimmon. Some days I eat fruit only, for sure.  Overall, however, I eat about a pound of greens per day, and recommend that  young tender greens, or shoots, comprise about 2% of your total caloric  intake. “

I have also an example of  FREDERIC  PATENAUDE on the fruit-greens issue :


”  Fruits do not contain enough calcium and other alkaline minerals to  maintain proper health over the long term. Most commercially available  fruits are very low in calcium. For example, the calcium-to-phosphorus ratio of  bananas is 0.3 to 1, meaning that for 100 grams of phosphorus in bananas, there  are only 30 grams of calcium. Even when we read, for example, that oranges or  figs contain lots of calcium — we have to understand something. Usually, the  high-mineral concentration is found in other parts of the fruit. For example,  most of the calcium in figs is found in the tiny seeds that are not digested,  even if they are eaten. The calcium in oranges is mostly found in the white  pith, that is also usually not eaten, and when it is, it is likely not  digested.


To  provide enough minerals in the diet, we need a sufficient quantity of green  vegetables. We need also a good variety of green vegetables — just  celery and romaine lettuce might not be enough to provide to most people’s  mineral needs. (For example, a huge head of romaine lettuce — one of the better  lettuce — contains only about 200 mg of calcium. And we are talking a huge head  that weighs more than a pound!)

More importantly, we need to eat  greens in such a way that the nutrients can be easily assimilated by the body.  Salads are great, but often the tough fiber of greens is not chewed or broken  down well enough in order for the nutrients to be well assimilated. This is in  addition to the fact that most people’s digestion is not as optimal as it could  be.


– Most people do not chew greens well enough, even when they think they  do.
– Eating a lot of salads all the time leaves little room for fruit. When  that happens, you fall short on your caloric (energy) requirements, so you start  adding more fat, nuts, and seeds to the diet — which eventually leads to a  failure.
– Most people do not eat a great variety of greens, and do not eat  the most important greens (those that contain the most minerals).
– Even  organic lettuce is not as rich in minerals as we’d like to think.
– Many  people tend to avoid some of the best greens because those are often too tough  and fibrous to enjoy raw. (Such as kale, broccoli, mustard greens, collards,  etc.)

So we need to include green vegetables often in our diets in a form  that is easily assimilable by the body — when the nutrients can be extracted  from the tough fiber of vegetables. We also need to include the richer greens,  those that contain the most calcium, more often in our diet.


1- The  consumption of green juices: Vegetable (or green) juices are a great  idea, as they require basically no digestion at all. (…)

2-  The regular consumption of green smoothies as a way to increase the  consumption of greens — As mentioned in the last e-zine in Victoria  Boutenko’s fine article, a better way to increase your fruit AND green  consumption is to start making green smoothies. (…)

3-  The use of blended salads or “raw soups” as an enjoyable way to eat  vegetables — People call them blended salads, I prefer to call them raw  soups. When made without fat, raw soups require very little digestion and will  deliver more minerals, compared to eating and chewing the same amount of  vegetables in a salad. (…)

4- The use of steamed  vegetables & steamed vegetable soups as an option in a high-raw (but not  100% raw) diet. That’s not a raw option, but can be very useful  nonetheless, in my opinion. If cooked foods are eaten, why not go for the  nutrient-dense green vegetables? By steaming vegetables you break down their  tough fiber and make them easier to chew and often, to digest. The greens of  choice would be all of those that are hard to eat raw: collards, kale, broccoli  stems, etc. (… ) “

On this fruit-greens issue , as I understand it  , have more or less the same dietary recommendations : Douglas Graham , Frederic  Patenaude , Swayze Foster , Andrew Perlot , Michael Arnstein , David Klein ,  Victoria Boutenko , Tracy Russell { 1 } , Tonya Zavasta { 2 } …   and  other rawfood promoters as well ( with each their own emphasis on some details  of the diet they are promoting )

{ 1 } Tracy Russell :
http://www.incrediblesmoothies.com/raw-food-diet/faq/are-fruitarian-diets-really-healthy/  ( she has written here an article on the 80-10-10 diet )

{ 2 } Tonya Zavasta :

Wrote this on the Iheartfruit Forum September 23 , 2012