Friday, May 23, 2008

Going Green

I am reading "Living Well with Montel" by talk-show host, Montel Williams. Most people know that he was diagnosed with MS in 1999, but his disease and mine are very different. His symptoms are invisible ones such as pain and numbness and mine are very visible, i.e. I can't walk. Anyway, I wanted to see what he had to say about healthy living and its affect on chronic diseases. I find myself in this mode fairly often where I decide that the conventional medical treatment isn't doing enough for me and I need to explore complementary medicine.

Montel holds a mirror up to me and my fellow Americans and says that we have two major problems, poor eating habits and a sedentary lifestyle. Unfortunately, he's right. I know that for me personally, I don't eat well and never have. I'm not a big fan of vegetables, especially anything orange. As for the sedentary lifestyle, of course I'm not walking 5 miles a day, but some days I'm pretty lazy about exercising my upper body. The good thing about the program in the book is that it's all about taking baby steps, changing bad habits slowly.

I decided to try a recipe for a smoothie in the book designed to get more fruits and vegetables into my diet. A smarter person would have started off halving the recipe, but not me. If Montel could do it, so could Lydia. I would be drinking myself to better health. My aide wrote down the ingredients we would need and off we went to the grocery store. We needed two bananas, three oranges (and this is the best part), one head of romaine lettuce. You're probably already salivating. We brought home these precious, life-changing ingredients, cut them up, shoved them in the blender, added water and let the machine rip. Needless to say, the end result did not look very appetizing. It was algae green and smelled odd, but that was not going to stop me. We poured a small glass of the elixir, I took a deep breath and then a big gulp. I instantly made a face before I could say, "it's not that bad."

Now, Montel says that this is a great way to get veggies into your children and they will love it. I think a parent might be charged with child abuse. The only reason that I didn't spitting the goop out was the cost of the ingredients. Also, I'm an adult technically and we don't behave that way. I understand that my perception of what tastes good is biased by my love of fat, sugar and salt. After I tried the drink, I was really craving a double cheeseburger, French fries and a tall chocolate shake to get the nasty taste out of my mouth. I don't think that it could've been much worse if I had used Brussels sprouts instead of the lettuce.

If you are to go into my refrigerator right now, you will find a big jug full of a dense green liquid. I have drunk several tall glasses of it, but I think it's multiplying in the container. It hasn't given me more energy or greater sense of well being, only gas. My body must not be only programmed for things that are good for it. Oddly enough, I haven't been able to convince anyone else to try it and I'm a bit worried that it will clog the sink. Maybe it will make good fertilizer?

1 comment:

Shauna said...

I highly recommend Jerry Seinfeld's wife's cookbook. Like many mothers she was always coming up with ways to get more veggies into her kids and while I enjoy veggies (mostly), I'm always looking for new and fun ways to incorporate them into my diet.

One of the best recipes in there is for chocolate chip cookies made with chick peas.....they are fantastic.

Basically, she just purees tons of vegetables each week and freezes them. Mashed potatoes, add some pureed cauliflower; spaghetti sauce, add some pureed spinach: you get the idea.