Years ago, when I was still living in San Francisco, I ate a strictly raw vegan diet. It was the thinnest, and probably the healthiest, I’d ever been. My skin and hair glowed, I had tremendous amounts of energy and my eczema went away — all because I replaced meat, dairy and processed foods with wholesome fruits and vegetables.

Living that lifestyle was difficult, though. My life revolved around managing my diet. I had to pack food wherever I went. I spent a great deal of time making juices and nut “cheeses” and dehydrating vegetable pulp. It was like having a second job and, unfortunately, I just couldn’t keep it up.

Recently, after chatting with my colleague Carson about the documentary, Fat, Sick and Nearly Dead, where the ailing filmmaker turned his life (and health) around by juicing for two months, I was inspired to pick up some of my old habits again.

I thought, I have about five pounds that I’m still trying to lose for my wedding and what better way to do it than by loading up my diet with more fruits and vegetables?

John Bosse, USANA’s registered dietitian, reminded me that I also needed more protein in my diet. Apparently, studies have shown that having a few protein-rich snacks throughout the day helps with weight loss. Thank goodness for Nutrimeal and USANA Nutrition Bars, am I right?

My experiment was this: have a large healthy breakfast, a Nutrimeal for lunch, a USANA bar in the afternoon and a large, nutritious fruit and vegetable shake for dinner. I also kept some low-fat, protein-filled snacks on hand, for whenever I felt hungry.

Camille, marketing manager for USANA’s nutritionals, went on this diet with me and said she felt lighter and more energetic, as well. Some nights, I’d made an extra shake for my partner, Ryan, who now enjoys them so much he’s asking for them!

Here are a couple of the shakes we’ve enjoyed. Feel free to swap out any of the fruits and vegetables in these recipes for whatever you like.

Not a fan of kale? Throw in some parsley instead. Don’t like the taste of ginger? Try a little lemon juice to brighten things up. The idea is to blend together leafy greens with delicious fruits so that you’ll actually want to drink the shake!

The Green Monster

Serves: 1

Ingredients

  • 1 handful of fresh spinach
  • 1 handful of fresh kale
  • 1/2 small apple, chopped
  • 1/2 cup frozen fruit of choice (such as strawberries or grapes)
  • 1/2 small banana
  • 1 scoop Vanilla Nutrimeal
  • 1 teaspoon Fibergy Plus

Preparation

  1. Place first five ingredients into a blender and pulse for 5-10 seconds; add water, if needed
  2. Add banana, Nutrimeal and Fibergy; puree until smooth

Green Energy Shake

Serves: 1

Ingredients

  • 1 handful spinach
  • 1 handful chard
  • 1/2 small cucumber
  • 1/2 cup orange juice
  • 1/4 cup frozen pineapple
  • 1/4 teaspoon ginger
  • 1 scoop Vanilla Nutrimeal
  • 1 teaspoon Fibergy Plus

Preparation

  1. Place first six ingredients into a blender and pulse for 5-10 seconds; add water, if needed
  2. Add Nutrimeal and Fibergy; puree until smooth

Your Turn

Do you like to make veggie shakes or juices? What are some of your favorite combinations?

Eating well is an important part of being healthy. From the USANA Test Kitchen is a monthly column offering useful nutrition tips, as well as delicious, healthy recipes that use USANA products in creative ways.

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5 replies
  1. Camille Fletcher
    Camille Fletcher says:

    I’ve been gushing all over Diana since we did this, thanking her for showing me the light. I felt great (and thinner). My skin looked good. And I was in a good mood (most of the time–wink). I’m now addicted to my kale-full smoothies and still try to have one most days of the week. Try these. I promise you’ll feel amazing!

    We also discovered that chocolate milk with the Orange Creme Nutrimeal (if you’re lucky enough to have any on hand) tastes delish, too!

    Reply
  2. Diana Yin
    Diana Yin says:

    I forgot about that! Yes, I ration out my Orange Creme throughout the year and it was AMAZING with low-fat chocolate milk! Non-dairy folks can use soy milk and chocolate syrup with it!

    Reply
  3. Mary Ellen Tamayo
    Mary Ellen Tamayo says:

    I made a cool shake I call Neapolitan Dynamite! I used one scoop of each Vanilla, Chocolate & Strawberry Nutrimeal, ice, water with a dash of pumpkin spice yummy!

    Love it for lunch!
    Mary Ellen

    Reply

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