One step forward two steps back.  I can’t go 100% raw just yet.

I’m not ready.  I understand and believe in all the benefits a raw food diet can provide but I am not prepared mentally or physically for this leap just yet.  All the power to the raw foodists out there – I will work towards it and incorporate more raw, living foods into my diet day by day – but I cannot completely change my diet just like that, I have to gradually get used to a change like this.

If I had to sit and eat a pile of bananas for dinner I think I would start chucking them at people.

So I’m going to finish off this 30 days eating vegan challenge (one week to go) and go from there onto another thirty day experiment.

I just started this book, Green for Life by Victoria Boutenko.  It’s about incorporating more greens into your diet and how an easy (and delicious) way to do it is by making green smoothies in your blender.  In the chapter I’m on right now she’s comparing the average North American diet to a chimpanzee’s diet and how we can learn from their food consumption (which involves a lot more greens than bananas, maybe surprisingly).

Here’s the foreword, which’ll give you an idea of what the book’s about.  He also suggests trying thirty days of green smoothies, which fits pretty well for this blog.

In more than thirty-five years of practice as a psychiatrist affiliated with the Harvard Medical School, I have learned one thing well: Human behavior is very hard to change.

Now Victoria Boutenko is persuading me otherwise.  Because this remarkable woman has developed a strategy for helping ordinary Americans (the ones who love ice cream and steak and French fries and pizza) introduce green living foods into their life in a delicious and habit-forming way.  Nothing she says in her book, Green for Life – about bodies’ ability to restore itself to good health if given the right nutrients to work with – is exactly new in itself.  And yet Green for Life is a groundbreaking achievement because Mrs. Boutenko has understood that the way to encourage her readers to trigger their natural mechanisms for cleaning cholesterol, fat and toxins from their bodies – and thereby to improve first their physical, and then their mental and spiritual, lives – is not to lecture her readers about the need to consume more living plant life, but to make it easy and pleasant for them to do it.

The green smoothie – or, to be more specific, the quart of green smoothie with which Mrs. Boutenko recommends in this book that we all start our day – is in and of itself a tremendous injection of chlorophyll, vitamins, minerals, enzymes and antioxidants into the typical American diet.  A quart of green smoothie a day also discourages consumption of denatured and greasy foods.  For one thing, it’s hard to stuff yourself with refined starches and sugars when you’re full on one of Mrs. Boutenko’s tasty and energizing concoctions.  (Check out one of the seventeen tempting recipes for Sweet Green Smoothies on page 159.)  And if another seductive green smoothie is waiting for you in the refrigerator when you get home from work, the dinner you prepare and consume after sipping it will almost certainly be smaller, and possibly healthier, too.

Thirty days of green smoothies will also change how you feel, and how you feel about yourself.  That’s no small achievement for one small book.

I salute Mrs. Boutenko.  I recommend that you take Green for Life very seriously.

I believe it can help you change your life.

A. William Menzin, M.D. – Department of Psychiatry; Harvard Medical School; Former consultant to the World Health Organization.