Any views or opinions presented in this blog are solely those of the author and do not necessarily represent those of the company. This blog is a unique perspective of one persons journey into fitness. Not all clients and participants at Parsons Training undergo the same training, and each person makes his or her own decisions regarding dietary discretions.
By Steve Sharpton, Parsons Training Center, Tucson, Arizona
August 1, 2019
The last couple weeks, we have been talking about food, and I figured…we might as well keep up the debates. Now why would anyone talk about food? Think about that question for a minute and get back to me on the subject. Food is the single most important factor for your weight maintenance or weight loss journey. People like myself have failed in that journey to a certain extent, and thus have I have had to start monitoring everything I eat to keep myself accountable. And then there are some people out there that need such physically active lives that dropping 3,000 calories on a meal is just commonplace. These are the extremes of the situation but there is a very dark underbelly to the world of food, and we feel this problem is just never addressed enough. Too many people are eating poorly, and it is fully realized when you see the fast food industry being a 200-billion dollar yearly venture. Yup, even with the pink slime fiascos, recalls and cancer links, fast food is alive and well. They even have vegan options now! So there are a lot of people that just eat out in general or never eat healthy to begin with. And then there is that day where you are forced to make some massive changes, either because you finally realize the game that large size clothing providers are playing or you lose your job and have to cut back on your eating out or worse yet, you get sick and have to make some major changes. Cutting your portions or eating nothing but foods you never ate to begin is a difficult proposition for most. It took me six months before I really decided to change everything and go vegan. Either way, we have all these ideas and a lot of people turn to a popular staple on the internet to get their fix. We’re talking about smoothies.
Now when you read this article’s headline, why in the world is there a debate about this method of eating? I mean, you can’t go wrong with something that is supposed to be healthy…right? This is kind of a double edged sword and it is something we need to ultimately look at. Now for me, smoothies are a nice change of pace. I usually hit up a local place called Xoom Juice here in Tucson or when they have a special on some fruits at my grocery store, I go to town on the smoothies for a couple days. But then there are the posers. The liars. The people that say they have smoothies but then again they just simply put a boatload of syrup into a blender and give me cold ice. Sorry, that is not a smoothie! Those of course are not the smoothies we are talking about here. Anyway, how can we even knock on a smoothie? Keep reading.
Now let us start with the good things. Smoothies are by definition a good addition to your daily diet. If you find yourself struggling to eat fruits, liquifying that stuff is a great alternative. Its the same reason why I like green smoothies because I have a real aversion to most leafy greens, and so mixing it up with some apples, berries and flaxseed really makes it easier to eat. If anything, smoothies are a great way to lose an extreme amount of weight. I have actually met people that had massive weight problems and for the most part, lost a whole bunch of weight thanks to smoothies. It became a extremely popular self help method after the movie “Fat, Sick and Nearly Dead” chronicled the life of Joe Cross and how he turned from a man 100 pounds overweight to a best selling self help guru thanks to juicing. Nowadays, Cross promotes short term reboot programs for people who are overweight and need a good boost. There are dozens of pages on social media that act as information and support groups for people that are into this idea. Making smoothies is a huge part of the “Raw Til 4” diet that so many people take part in. Truthfully, it is great way to lose weight if you got a lot of weight to lose. If you are eating a 3,000 calorie pizza, then am 800 calorie smoothie is a better alternative. While many people like Cross have some good ideas in regards to short term smoothies “reboots,” there does come a lot of division in the community.
Now, I’m just gonna lay out the foundation here. There is nothing wrong with smoothies. Just because of some of the counterarguments against them doesn’t mean you should never eat smoothies. But let’s face it, virtually nothing in our society doesn’t have side effects. The biggest issue with smoothies comes from the fact they are a massive caloric bomb to the system. Depending on what you are doing with them, the content can grow even more. Now I have seen many people say drinking more than a blender full of smoothies is just fine for the system, but think about the calories. Here is a comparison of say one of the healthier 40-ounce smoothies at a local shop here in town (or a franchise in reality, but I have yet to see them in other cities). One of the leanest drinks they have is 540 calories for 40-ounces. Think about the equivalence if you drank a full 70-ounce blender full. That’s 945 calories, and if you are drinking three of those that 2,835 calories. Now some people might think that is crazy to drink that much in smoothies, but just remember that is a really healthy smoothie. People also tend too throw other high calorie ingredients in as well, such as chocolate, peanut butter and whey proteins. Being exclusive to this lifestyle can be difficult.
There are some other risks that become involved with a heavy smoothie. Some health pages state you can fall into a state of hunger or never feel satiated. Now I never came across this issue myself, but then again the longest I ever went on an all-smoothie diet was three days. Much like the way most health experts these days promote the lifestyle, going more than two weeks on a smoothie diet is probably enough. Then you have some of the other health problems. While liquifying or turning your food into smoothies really brings out the fiber, a lot of the times you might start excising a lot of the viable nutrients you need in your body to operate properly. Thesis why a lot of people might get sick because their body might be lacking nutrients. Plus you have some issues with your mouth health to consider. Smoothies—due to the higher acidity—may hurt your tooth enamel. You also might be affecting your gut health in addition to this. When you chew food, you produce salivary amylase in your mouth and it is alkaline, so it combats the effects of the acids in your food and it’s an important part of digestion. Chewing also helps keep your jaw strong and capable.
Honestly, smoothies are a good change of pace. In a world of fruity drinks and sodas, you are much better off drinking this stuff than say a 20-ounce cola. I think it is best for people to understand that we should always eat a good mix of nutrients. Anyway, next week we will conclude this whole food kick we have been on and start talking about working out again. Until then!
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Any views or opinions presented in this blog are solely those of the author and do not necessarily represent those of the company.
Meet the Author
Steve, a Parsons Training Client, went from 400 pounds to Running half-marathons, from lifting pizzas to lifting hundreds of pounds through training with us.
When you read this blog you are reading through the eyes of someone who is winning the battle of real weight loss. Steve is not a fitness professional, but he is someone we can all learn from.
Steve shares his journey once a week here on our blog. We hope that you find a spark of inspiration from reading his blog.
Any views or opinions presented in this blog are solely those of the author and do not necessarily represent those of the company. The author of this blog is an independent writer and is not an associate of Parsons Training, LLC. Any information or images displayed are done so solely at the authors discretion. Any dietary or fitness commentary is exclusively that of the author and in no way dictated by the company.