Wild Claims

Wild Claims

Guest Blogger Contribution.

Do wild claims about foods made on marketing websites annoy you?

Here’s an example that disturbed me:

http://www.smoothiehealthyrecipes.com/healthy-smoothie-recipes/weight-loss-smoothie-recipes/almond-butter-smoothie-for-weight-loss/

It’s a smoothie “for weight loss”. It's probably ultra yummy, but would it be effective? Let’s look at the ingredients:

One cup of coconut milk: 445 calories, 48 grams of fat,
(43 grams is saturated fat)
1/4 cup almond butter: 384 calories, 35 grams of fat.
One banana: 105 calories, a trace of fat.
One date: 66 calories, a trace of fat

Totals: it’s mega load of 1000 calories, with a whopping 83 grams of fat.

This smoothie is 75% fat, almost half of which is artery-clogging saturated. Would this be a refreshing, slimming smoothie? Not if what Dr. McDougall says it true (which it is!) "The fat we eat is the fat we wear." http://www.drmcdougall.com/misc/2013nl/jul/one.htm

If a person wanting to lose weight consumes this shake in the morning (as the website recommends), they would likely feel more sluggish than “refreshed”. Then at lunch time, when they would likely want to eat, they have a quandary. Having already consumed at least half of their daily caloric need, and several days’ worth of fat, what do they do? Maybe they choose to skip lunch and dinner to lose weight, endure the hunger pangs and ultimately (probably) give up trying to lose weight.

Does that sound all too familiar?

So now let’s look at a low-fat smoothie made from low-fat plant foods. The banana & date are fine, so instead of the high-fat coconut milk, let’s use an oil-free rice milk & 1/4 cup of blueberries and one tablespoon of ground flax seed instead of almond butter.

One cup of rice milk:  120 calories, 3 grams of fat.
1/4 cup of blueberries: 21 calories, a trace of fat.
One banana: 105 calories, a trace of fat.
One date: 66 calories, a trace of fat.

Totals: 312 calories, 4 grams of (primarily unsaturated) fat.

Wow! What a difference!

The rice milk smoothie is 1/3 of the calories of the one baed on coconut milk, with a mere fraction of the fat, almost none of which is saturated. There is even some wiggle room for a tablespoon of ground flax seed for the sake of an omega 3 boost. It adds about 150 more calories and 12 grams of fat. Even so, the smoothie is still only about 4% fat. That is well under the 10% fat guideline that results in natural weight loss. It could be a sustainable part of a dietary program that results in less hunger, less pain, less suffering, all of which makes it easier to stick to and resist temptation = a winning combination!

This smoothie probably would feel refreshing as a way to start the day, leaving lots of room for a substantial number of calories to be consumed at lunch and dinner. It could be a sustainable part of a dietary program that results in less hunger, less pain, less suffering, all of which makes it easier to stick to and resist temptation = a winning combination!

And one final comment on this topic: eating our calories is better than drinking them, so maybe an even better breakfast would be a generous ½ serving of brown rice, with the blueberries, banana and one date chopped into it, with a little ground flax seed sprinkled on top.That’s the same calories and amount of fat, but because we’ve chewed it ourselves instead of asking the blender to do it for us, it will cause a lower/slower rise in blood glucose, feel more satisfying longer and helps keep our teeth strongly rooted in our jaws.

Three cheers for low-fat whole plant foods that really are good for us AND for weight loss.

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