Response to Article: How Green Smoothies Can Devastate Your Health

glowing green smoothie oxalates

Yes you read the title right. Though 2/3 of our population is currently considered obese, as people load up on high fructose corn syrup-filled sodas, deep fried doughnuts and fried chicken, pizza and fast food supersized meals…green smoothies can be the thing that can “devastate” your health?! Yes, green smoothies, that are made of raw green vegetables and fruit. As preposterous as this claim will surely seem to you, read on.

Recently, an anti-green smoothie blog was published and some of you asked me about it. In a blog titled, “How Green Smoothies Can Devastate Your Health,” posted on the Healthy Home Economist blog, the author argued that green smoothies could raise oxalate levels in people with oxalate toxicity. She then went onto describe the devastating effects this could have on health – ranging from fibromyalgia and kidney stones to oxalate stone formation in the brain. This type of fear-based, sensationalist nutritional information concerns me greatly, because it can keep people from eating the healthy foods their bodies need.

What Are Oxalates?

Oxalates are organic acids that occur naturally in humans, animals, and plants. They exist naturally in the human body. Likewise, our bodies convert many of the things we consume (like vitamin C) into oxalates. When combined with sodium and potassium, oxalate forms soluble salts. When combined with calcium, however, oxalate produces calcium oxalate, which can form kidney and other types of stones. This occurs because calcium oxalate is relatively insoluble, so it combines and hardens instead of harmlessly excreting as a waste product.

Oxalate-Related Conditions

  • oxalate related conditionsSome conditions require oxalate restriction (50 mg per day or fewer), but these conditions are extremely rare. Conditions affected by oxalates are:
  • Primary and enteric hyperoxaluria: A genetic predisposition to this disorder occurs in less than 1 percent of the population. In cases of genetic and enteric hyperoxaluria, strict oxalate restriction is required. Primary hyperoxluria (genetic) can lead to renal disease and renal failure.
  • Dietary hyperoxaluria: Arising from dietary factors, this is more common condition, and is associated with the formation of calcium oxalate kidney stones. In cases where patients develop calcium oxalate kidney stones, physicians do recommend moderating intake of high oxalate foods such as animal protein. Kidney stones occur in about 10 percent of the population.                                                                                                                                       Let me repeat that again: it is widely recommended to reduce animal protein in relation to kidney stones. High levels of animal protein may be a much, much larger contributing factor to this condition than vegetables, as the kidneys have to filter out the bi-products of protein digestion and metabolism.
  • Hypercalciuria type II: Excessive urinary calcium excretion exists in less than 10 percent of the population. This condition, like hyperoxaluria, is associated with kidney stone formation. Interestingly, studies show that increasing dietary calcium intake restricts oxalate absorption.

Oxalates and Kidney Stones

There are oxalates in the foods you eat. Some foods, such as spinach and rhubarb, contain higher levels of oxalates than others. If your body absorbs high levels of oxalates and does not process it well, it may result in the formation of calcium oxalate stones, which most commonly form as kidney stones. Some people are more predisposed to this condition than others. No clear evidence exists linking dietary oxalate restriction to formation of fewer calcium oxalate kidney stones, however.
Some foods increase oxalate levels in the body more than others. These include rhubarb, soy, dark leafy greens, beets, chocolate, wheat bran, and tea. According to the Canadian Medical Association Journal, however, you can mitigate the effects by drinking fluids and consuming more dietary calcium.

Oxalates in Natural Food

The topic of how oxalates in natural foods like spinach affect people with hyperoxaluria remains the subject of debate among experts. In his book Conscious Eating, Gabriel Cousens MD theorizes that eating oxalates in natural foods like spinach does not build up oxalate levels in the body as long as fat metabolism and digestion work properly. Cousens goes on to quote Dr. Norman Walker, author of Raw Vegetable Juices, stating that cooking oxalic acid-containing vegetables is what causes an irreversible bind with calcium, leading to kidney stones.

Benefits of Leafy Greens

benefits of leafy greensWhile oxalic acid may, indeed, cause a problem in a small percentage of the population, it would be a shame to allow fear of a condition that occurs in very few people to keep you from realizing the tremendous benefits associated with consumption of raw, leafy greens like spinach. With the vitamins, minerals, fiber, antioxidants and enzymes that have such a positive effect on your health, the benefits far outweigh the risk of developing a condition that affects such a small portion of the population.

Properly functioning metabolism and digestion offer protective benefits against oxalate related illnesses (see above). What’s the best way to ensure your metabolism and digestion function properly? Feeding your body the healthy, whole, non-toxic plant foods it was meant to eat. When you eat a diet full of healthful foods the body is intended to eat, it works more efficiently. As you detoxify, your body works more efficiently, as well.

Minimizing the Effects of Oxalate

  • If you remain concerned, you can minimize the potential effects of oxalates
  • Eat plenty of dietary calcium from plant-based sources.
  • Rotate your greens. Change up your Glowing Green Smoothie recipe, as I’ve always encouraged, and switch up the salads so you are eating a variety of greens and other non-starchy vegetables.
  • Minimize juicing if you have formed calcium oxalate kidney stones in the past or are concerned about oxalate. Juicing may be more problematic because you are removing parts of the whole food (including fiber), and thus increasing concentrations of other substances. A smoothie, however, contains every part of the whole food, which is the way nature intended food to be consumed, which may minimize oxalate problems.

The Bottom Line

redue the risk of oxalateWhile some experts express concerns about oxalates, others have the exact opposite opinion. With today’s highly processed diet, it’s not surprising that some humans react to elements in the foods our bodies were meant to eat (whole, raw, plant-based foods). Eliminating these foods and returning to a more pure, natural way of eating, however, can help restore health and vitality. With so many benefits to eating dark leafy greens, it’s a shame to allow fear of a condition that occurs in a small minority of people to keep you from achieving vibrant health.

What do you think? I’d love to hear your opinions about oxalates, and I’d definitely like to hear have the author of the original article respond to the points made here.



Last updated: Friday, June 19, 2015

    I can only speak from experience, and mine has been one of success. Since discovering your green smoothies, my health has increased on many levels. I feel the negative effects when I go several days without one. I’m a believer that we should all be consuming liquid greens as often as possible.

    • Kimberly Snyder

      Great thanks everyone for your amazing comments! I can’t respond to everyone, but I am going through and reading them now. I really appreciate everyone participating in the conversation and speaking up.

      I am thrilled to hear that so many of you are feeling great on your GGS and the positive difference it has made on your life.

      Lots of love, Kimberly

      • Ro

        Hi! I’ve read similar articles as well, and, as someone who is hypothyroid, meaning my thyroid, and hence my metabolism are both slow, I’ve chosen to steam those veggies that are problematic. Crusiferous greens n veg, when raw, are known to be detrimental to those with thyroid concers. I don’t steam them to death, just slowly over low heat Til softened, which is what my doc recommended. I figure in the long run, I still get loads of nutrients….and the smoothie tastes great ( I actually prefer it with the added parsley and cilantro…)!

  • Lynne Boschee

    While I’m sure there is a minute percentage of the population who needs to watch this, the vast majority of us are enjoying the benefits of the Beauty Detox Solution. My husband — who is a an endurance cyclist — started the GGS a few months ago. He still eats animal protein, etc. At his most recent doctor appointment, all his blood work had improved by at least 25 percent. His cholesterol was the lowest we have seen in 20 years. Thank you Kimberly!

    • Brandon

      I have also responded to the scare tactics used against the green smoothie recently. With the amount of liquid you are consuming in the green smoothie, it helps with reducing the incidence of developing kidney stones anyway, keeping you hydrated. I don’t understand why someone would advocate against consuming dark, green leafy vegetables. It just doesn’t make sense in my mind. Thanks for sharing, Kimberly. :)

  • Lauren

    Thank you so much for responding to this blog! I am one who get chronic calcium oxalate stones. I am only 26 and have had over 10 stones. Doctors say my body produces too much calcium, this forming the stones. There is no real cure, remedy or prevention for these stones. Many have tried giving me brochures on diet change, but let’s face it the brochure basically says don’t eat anything. So I decided to take my health into my own hands and change the way I eat! This is when I picked up the “Maker’s Diet” and “The Beauty Detox Solution”

    The doctors I have seen as well as their brochures tell me to stay away from Spinach or other leafy vegetables or limiting it to twice a week. I am happy to say I have my GGS every morning and have changed my diet to pescatarian/vegetarian. I follow “The Beauty Detox Solution” with food pairings, eating light to heavy and so on! And I have not had a kidney stone in over a year! (knock on wood) I feel great on the GGS and love my new lifestyle of eating!

    Thanks for all you do Kim!

    • Denise D’Agostino

      Wow you are a perfect example of how this anti-GS article is baloney! Awesome!

    • Laura Hunt

      Hi Kim,

      I purchased your book when it first came out and loved it. I had read several other books about the connection between health and food such as Alicia Silverstone’s The Kind Diet and The Body Ecology Diet..I can’t remember the author of that one..I’m sure you are famliar with it. I found your’s to be the most helpful for me but I am unsure of how to implement the things that I learned from it into my daily diet because of some health issues that I have. I have recently been told that I am going to have to go completely sugar-free for three months but I am unsure of how to do that since I have some a severe gluten intolerance and do not want to be on your typical high protein diet as I am trying to slowly get meat out of my diet with the exception of some types of fish. I’m only 26 and am very petite but have a lot of medical issues right now including Candida, leaky gut, blood sugar and hormonal imbalances which are probably a result of years and years of an extremely unhealthy, highly processed high-carb diet. Any advice that you could give would be extremely appreciated, as I am in Mississippi and don’t have access to any really good nutritionists least as far as I know. I go to Memphis, TN and Birmingham, AL on a regular basis as well as Atlanta, GA so if you know of anyone in your field in any of those places who I could try to start working with that would be great! Thank you for your book and this blog!

      • Ginger Dunham

        Hi, you can totally cut out sugar and gluten while not adding in meat. That is exactly how we eat at our house.
        We don’t have health issues but moved to this type of diet to thrive and enjoy life with a clear mind and clean body. My husband is a super Athalete ( iron man, 100 mile ultra marathons etc) and eats this way.

        I hope to hear from you,

    • Dennis

      I was enjoying juicing using kale and spinach; after 4 huge kidney stones in 4 years with 4 operations my urologist told me to quit juicing greens. This was after doing Litholink studies. Juicing greens did make me feel incredible; any suggestions?

  • sarah jane

    It still astounds me that people want to tear down good things. It just doesn’t make sense to me. I’ve never even heard of oxalate before, but I’ve certainly about heart disease, cancer, and diabetes! I appreciate your very thorough response, Kimberly. Thanks for changing my life and the lives of so many others in such a positive way!

    • shweta

      Hey Kim,

      Thank you so much for such an enlightening response!!! It is indeed true that better digestion and fast metabolism are the saviours. But yes we should rotate our greens in GGS and Moderation Is the key!!!

      My father has a kidney stone problem, back in india. He eats some green plant(Ayurvedic Recommendation) for his recovery. He has always recovered well after consumption of this green plant, about which i really have no idea. But since its green and he eats it raw, itself makes me wonder how could raw spinach cause that amount of damage. Its ridiculous to just point green juicing as the culprit while there are several other factors to consider.

      keep doing great work…
      and desperately waiting for your new book,


  • Jo Ellen

    I drink a green smoothie every day which includes always, kale, spinach, banana, apple, chia seeds and sometimes kiwi and other fruits. I make a weeks worth of shakes and freeze them for the week.
    When you say to change out the green smoothie, what ingredients would you suggest eliminating or at least not eating every day?

    • Lori

      I think what she is referring to is rotating the greens and fruits you use to make your daily GGS. Such as using collard greens, dandelions, etc. one week and your usual kale and spinich another. Hope this helps!

    • Steph

      Just try to rotate the ingredients, there are so many to choose from. Personally, I have used dark lettuces like green leaf, red leaf, butter and romaine, as well as swiss chard. Sometimes I use small amounts of more bitter greens, like collard, beet and turnip greens, and even carrot greens. It just depends what I got in my CSA that week. I really like cucumber or celery in my smoothies too. Also, you could try a pear instead of an apple. Having variety will ensure you get a wide range of nutrients. Also, there are some opinions that if you eat the same food everyday you could develop food intolerances. Hope that helps!

  • Anna

    Anyone who has taken green smoothies as part of their daily nutrition and notice the great health benefit of it will find any argument against it rather uninteresting. Kimberly, my english is not very well, but I first want to thank you for your continuously benefitting health information and inspiration. Secondly I want to ask you: do you know why the skin round the mouth can suddenly become darkcolored, like brown/grey. A liver issue maybe?

  • Melanie

    Hi Kim, thanks for sharing all of this information. I just stumbled upon your book about a month ago and am 2 weeks into ‘blossoming beauty.’ I read the comments yesterday about this but wrote it off as ‘scare tactics.’ You get so much differing information out there about food, it is so sad, but what you said above and in your book rings true and I just want to thank you for sharing all of the information that you do each and everyday here and in my email box, it helps me to feel good about the choices I am making that I know are better for my body. I have a question. I came upon your book because I started an exercise program/healthy diet that allowed me to lose close to 40 lbs. When I found your book I was searching for a way to eat that would allow me to maintain my weight loss and continue to eat healthy/possibly journey to eating even healthier. I am happy to say that since finding your book and starting with the blossoming beauty phase, I have not gained any weight. On the contrary, I keep losing! I was hoping it would steady when I reached a naturally good weight for my body. When I saw I kept losing, I scaled back my exercise from 6 days a week with cardio to 4-5 days a week and no cardio. The exercise I am doing now (I guess you would call it calisthenics) muscle strengthening exercises is something that I truly enjoy. I want to continue on your plan but can’t really afford to lose more weight…this is a problem I would’ve thought I never would have incidentally! Should I up my portions, include more fat (avocado, and healthy oils) etc. ?? What would your advice be? I really don’t want to give up the exercise I am doing, I really love the tone I have now and I enjoy moving for the 4-5 days a week that I do and I almost (yes, almost) miss my cardio sessions. Thanks again for your knowledge and inspiration!!!

    • Cori

      Thank you for that response article Kimberly! My family is affected by Gout, Hematomachrosis, and Gluten Intolerance. I adjust your recipes according to our personal dietary needs, as should anyone who is affected by a disorder. I’m sorry, but people need to realize it is impossible to create the perfect recipe that accounts for every possible dietary restriction out there. People need to take ownership of what they place into their bodies. Thank you for your recipes and interesting articles. I’m a big fan! =)

  • carrie

    Kimberly, thank you so much for commenting on this topic! You are the best!! When I saw that link, I have to admit, I did get a bit nervous! Thank you, again for posting on this!!! By the way, at what age is it okay to start the GGS-I want to start having my 12 month old, but I’m not sure if her body can digest the greens yet? What do you think? Thanks in advance :)

  • Gary

    Hi Kim,

    The trigger response that erupts in my mind after reading this is “stupidity”. c’mon, they’re plants for God sakes. I think it’s irresponsible for someone—credible or otherwise—to use terminology like “devastating” in their blogs for thousands of readers looking to be healthy.

    How the hell is eating plant-based foods EVER devastating. There will always be uneducated, and bitter people out there who come up with a stupid way to get attention by grasping at cloudy, loosely thrown together information and spinning it to serve their selfish needs.

    I think you’re doing a great job, and my fiance and I continue to receive the benefits of your “Glowing Green Smoothie”.

    Keep on doing what you’re doing and let the nay sayers keep trying—futile as it may be—to misinform the public with their selfish agendas.


    • Gail Orr

      Hello Kimberly,
      What an interesting blog from you today. I have never heard of Oxalate, however I would just like to say I have been making your GGS since January 2012 and have had nothing but great health benefits from this and other recipes from your book.

      Greatly reducing animal products especially dairy and omitting wheat has had the most fabulous effect on my body. More plant foods definitely were meant for me.

      Don’t let these negative comments affect your good work ( and I’m sure they won’t ),
      you are a God send to healthy eating. Love your work…..can’t wait for your new book. Bless you.

  • Deb

    Hi Kimberly. I notice you did not address the fibromyalgia comment. Good for you. According to many physical therapists, fibromyalgia is a group of symptoms lumped together whose cause is mostly due to loss of structural integrity in various parts of the body. The result is pain in various parts of the body, and many doctors do not take the time to address the underlying causes for the symptoms. For example, poor posture can cause pain in the back and neck, but the poor posture often stems from the body not aligning properly, and this misalignment can be caused by tight foot tendons which in turn can also cause knee and hip pain. Being overweight and under-hydrated can exacerbate the symptoms. I’m probably not explaining this properly, but if someone can jump in and help me out …

  • Kristen Peters

    It just doesn’t make sense! Wow would any expert shun veggies. Especially with today’s obesity epidemic.

  • Reese Clark

    We are encouraged to eat more fruits and vegetables by every health authority out there, I don’t understand how breaking it down into a smoothie would not be beneficial. If anything, I consume more servings of fruits and vegetables in the form of a smoothie than I do eating it.

  • Jenny

    I’m a nursing mother and I have green smoothie daily, I love the way i feel and i love the way i look, from an asian family i was raised eating green leafy vegetable and i can’t imagine living without it. I have never studied nutrition but i do listen to my body very carefully and work very hard to give it what it needs. So far, no kidney stones, no painful sex and no fungal infections that i used to have. I have respect wisdom and knowledge and thank you for kindly sharing your knowledge and your experience with the world.I felt that the article intensions was very brain washing in a very negative way and it needs to stop.

  • Catherine Desjeunes

    Well put Kimberly,

    I have been drinking my green smoothies every morning since January and I feel great! My daughter is the one who originally told me about your book and the green smoothies and the food eating order, which I more or less already knew about.

    The interesting thing is that a few months down the road, most days now, the warm lemon drink and the smoothie are sufficient for breakfast and I will not feel hungry until lunch time. If I do, I usually have a fruit.

    Smoothies are a great way to eat many excellent green vegetables at once and I know that I have had a decent portion of vegetables and fruits on the days where I am less inclined to eat vegetables at every meal.

  • Jenny

    PS: love you, Beauty detox is my nutrition bible :)

  • Dorothy

    Thanks for bringing this up, because I had read about this when I first started your plan this past winter. After about two weeks on green smoothies, I developed a funny side effect which made me stop them; increased eczema, especially under and around my eyes, which I understand can be a detox symptom. I looked for info about oxalates, just to be sure it wasn’t that. After reading though, I realized that oxalates weren’t the cause of this kind of side effect. I had to just chalk it up to detox. Unfortunately, I haven’t gotten back to the smoothies, I thought I’d wait til they were growing in nature, here in the midwest. I’m hoping that will allow me to have them without the eczema.

  • Bobby

    Perhaps if you drink a Green Smoothie every day but eat the Standard American Diet the rest of the time you may be at risk because your body is not functioning optimally.
    If you eat a vegan diet with a wide mix of fruits, vegetables, nuts, seeds, beans and whole sprouted grains and probiotics and enzymes, that includes a Green Smoothie every day, I cannot see how you could possibly develop kidney stones when your nutrition, digestion and circulation sysems are in perfect working order.

    • Del

      I’ve read every comment. This makes the most sense.

    • Lynn

      This rings absolutely true to me. Thank you!

  • Robyn

    I decided to have a look at what the author of the above-mentioned article recommended as an alternative to the green smoothie:
    “If you enjoy green leafy vegetables, enjoy them in moderation in salads (not huge ones every single day) or even better, cook them thoroughly and carefully drain and discard all the cooking water – never use it in soups and sauces! Be sure to serve cooked leafy greens with butter for maximum absorption of minerals.”
    Cooking kills off all heat-sensitive nutrients these vegetables offer. This is once again a case of bad science creating FUD. It flies in the face of all the evidence collected by the China Study.
    Better studies need to be devised to study oxalate deposit formation (kidney and gall stones) … I find it quite curious that for conditions such as these that account for so many hospitalisations in westernised countries, no definitive answers have yet been found as to how it all occurs and what are the causitive mechanisms.

  • Aubrey

    Ekk! That article seems a little misinformed. A lot of the commenters said they will now stop eating/drinking dark leafy greens…um, what?!
    I’m not a nutritionist but have been a vegetarian most of my life. I’ve never encountered any issues with eating plants (and I eat a lot of them!). After I found you, I started the GGS around five mornings a week and my skin is impeccable and I have never felt better!
    To me it seems obvious. Moderation and variation are key. No two of my GGSs are the same. I rotate combinations of spinach, kale, arugula, bok choy, apple, banana, lemon juice, etc etc…combos are endless!

    So I say whatever to that article. Let’s keep doing our thing :]

    • doreen

      Instead of focusing on this ridiculousness, this country should get more concerned about the number of overweight/obese people in this country. It boggles my mind whenever I’m out and about and I see so many like this walking around. I for one am continuing exactly on the path I’ve been on for awhile (that being following the Meditteranean diet with more fruits and veggies and little meat) and exercising 5-7 days per week.

  • Anthony Macias



  • Angela

    Great response. I was first introduced to green smoothies about 5 years ago after I read Green for Life, Victoria Boutenko. She addressed this very topic. All throughout her two books, Green for Life and Green Smoothie Revolution, she stresses the importance of rotating your greens. She practically yells at you about it in her books!

    I’ve always been curious, have you read her books?

  • Ruben

    Thank you for the clarification, although I wasn’t going to quit my green juice, I have proven that it works by monitoring the blood tests that my doctor requires.

  • Nour

    Great article! Any thoughts regarding eating kale if you have thyroid issues (hypothyroidism)?

  • MonicaP

    Well, sure .. I suppose if you’re drinking excessive amounts of green smoothies with no variety in the ingredients as your primary meals .. you could cause yourself an oxalate related medical condtion, but .. it’s similar to drinking too much water and causing issues with your kidneys … everything in moderations folks 😉


  • Natasha Zeligs

    Well, I have to agree with you Kimberly. It is unfortunate that the author seems to have read a couple of articles, then made a very uneducated assumption, and unfortunately published her not altogether well thought out conclusion.

    It is comforting that many, many educated readers responded, one of whom is a scientist who has actually made a career of studying oxalates so there is a lot of information supporting the consumption of Green Smoothies.

  • Sarah

    Hi Kim,

    I saw this article via your Twitter the other day, and I noticed some mentions on oxylates in relation to candida albicans. Is it true that people with Candida should stay away from oxylates as well, especially if digestion is comprimised?

  • jade

    The first I’ve heard of this was from comments here on your blog. Agree that having the smoothies as opposed to juicing and rotating vegetables, as you’ve suggested, would help deter most problems. Also, are there perhaps problems involved if people have lots of dairy as well and cutting that out may help since it mentioned calcium and we aren’t meant to have cow’s milk?

    A roommate that was a nutritionist turned me on to Dr. Young about 15 years ago, I noticed you referred to in your book, so I knew you were not a trend but serious about nutrition and health. I truly believe that eating more of the food we are supposed to from the earth (And greens are prolific for a reason, I think because they are so necessary for our health.) and getting rid of the mucus causing and non-food products out of our diet would be the best for our optimal health.

    I do wonder, however, if my digestion is the best since I don’t get the super energy that you and others have mentioned (though I’m not sluggish either). Is that a sign of anything to look at??

    Just a snippet of my background prior to BDS (about 6 months ago) I was: ADDICTED to cheese and sugar. Now, my sweet tooth is beginning to ebb and I only have goat cheese and cheese on the occasional piece of pizza. Trying to implements raw sauerkraut and digestive enzyme at dinner as a daily habit. I’m basically vegan except for fish which I only have about once or twice a month. I should also lose roughly 20lbs.

    Also, I am a psoriasis sufferer and while it has improved some and I would welcome any suggestions you have. Your plan is the best that I’ve read and I love and appreciate your cohesive approach to nutrition and health.

    Can’t wait for more of your audio files and your new book as well :))

    All the best!

    ~ j

  • Donna E

    Thanks for sharing this, it cleared up some confusion!

  • Lori

    I use ‘moderation’ as the key term for anything I do – and I listen to my body. If I drink too much of something – my body lets me know. I just keep trying to find that balance. Green Smoothies are great after I walk, but I don’t walk every day. Unfortunately we will always have something which contradicts what someone else says.

  • Rosina

    It would seem to me that if someone were doing the GGS and suddenly didn’t feel so well, or developed some of the conditions described, they would know enough to see a medical professional about the problem. The article against green smoothies is irresponsible because it creates fear with its wording. A very small percentage of the population would experience problems, and I think there are far more of us that say otherwise. Since starting the GGS (5 days a week, only on workdays) I have noticed increased energy, stamina, a reduction in my ADD symptoms, increased focus and drive, and a general feeling of wellness. People should try for themselves and see the difference it makes before being turned off to it by such articles. And Kimberly has said numerous times to switch up the recipe! She’s helped me feel 10 years younger and I thank her and the GGS for it!

  • Stephanie

    Great article!! I was once skeptical of veg’n diets and was influenced by the whole WAPF thing. However, I stumbled across a youtube series called “Primitive Nutrition” which provided thorough scientific evidences of the superiority of plant-based nutrition. Along with Dr McDougall’s and Dr. Campbell’s response to these fad high-meat diets, I am now completely convinced. Thank You Kimberly. Keep up the great work!

  • Sara Mathison

    That anti-green smoothie article has to be a joke. At the end the author says to cook the heck out of your veggies, never reuse the water for soup, and cover them in butter! This must be someone just trolling for reactions to their joke website. I don’t believe a word of it. Also, my dog is on a low oxalate diet because he had stones, he has to eat a diet like a human would with the same condition, so I know you can still eat healthy and avoid oxalate-in-food, if need be. But “covered in butter” whaat? The nutritionist said to never eat diary if you have that issue. I really think that article is a joke.

  • Lindsey

    Very well articulated and described. Thank you!

  • http://KimberlySnyder BJames

    I started drinking the Green Smoothies every morning since January 2012. As the months have passed I cannot say anything good has happened as the result of drinking these smoothies, have not lost weight or anything amazing, just felt it must be healthy for me! Recently I have felt that my joints feel painful when I walk, and I have not ever noticed that before. I do not know what fibromyalgia feels like either, but now I am wondering if this could be the reason?! I also take my powdered calcium in the morning with my smoothie – You spoke of calcium oxalate -I wonder if that is a problem taking the smoothie and calcium together?! I cannot say, as I am not a Nutritionist/Doctor/Health Expert etc.

  • Shelbye

    I completely agree with your response to that article, Kimberly! I personally drink your smoothie and juices daily and feel I has been the best thig for my health!!! I did want to ask your personal opinion on the products CellFood as well as drinking Kombucha? Thanks for promoting health and wellness!!!

  • Johanne Bernard

    Well, I am concern about oxalate. Why when something is good we always have to get a bad side of it! Some say it’s good, some say it is not… confusing.
    When you say we should have plant-base calcium, which one do you refer to?

  • carly

    Thank you so much! I’ve been drinking green smoothies everyday and even giving a little bit to my 9 month old. My sister-in-law just sent me the article stating green smoothies are bad for health. I was so confused and frustrated. Thank you for explaining it further. I really appreciate it. I agree that getting fruits and vegetables this way is better than nothing. I’m making baby steps in improving our family’s health and well-being! Thanks!

  • Mary

    I make my own recipe of green smoothie most days. Kale or shredded Collards, half of a banana, slice of pineapple, water, scoop of whey protein. No Problems yet. Been doing that since watching Jack LaLanne growing up fifty years ago.

  • Merle

    Thank you so much for responding to that post. Health “professionals” tend to become so dogmatic in their beliefs, they lose sight of the fact that we are all different and it’s not one size fits all. We each need to take responsibility for our own health and listen to our own bodies. Telling people to limit leafy greens is grossly irresponsible. Leafy greens are so valuable to our health, we need not fear them! Sadly, people rely on these blogs and websites for their health information.
    I say, bring on the kale, chard, collards, spinach, romaine, arugula and so on!

  • Gena

    Thank you! This is a great reply to a ridiculous article.

  • Ava

    I can’t believe that someone would argue that consuming more fruits and vegetables could potentially be a bad thing …

  • Nancy

    My experience with greens after I was diagnosed with MS in 2000 is that I never felt better and had more energy and was at my perfect body weight, didn’t have to worry about my weight. Needless to say, after I stopped juicing everyday and watching what I ate, I did have a kidney stone. But I started drinking water, I would say 2 gallons a day for a week ( I was home on vacation, what a way to spend a vacation!) that I passed the kidney stone without even knowing it. X rays diagnosed the problem and X rays saw that it was gone, pain free with water alone. So I will go back to juicing and drinking water for as long as I live. Amen!!!!!!!!!!!!

  • Leah

    How absurd! I would never give up my green smoothies! EVER! I make them every morning for my husband and I and our two & four years olds. Articles like these are the reason people on the SAD stay on the SAD.
    Kimberly, thank you for your knowledge and passion for spreading important health information to many. We adore you! Muah.

  • Susan

    Hi Kimberly,

    Thanks for sending me the updated news. I have just read your book and have not started the diet yet. I was hesitate to start, but after reading the replies from other people I will start next week. I have a gluten allergy as well as ms. When I read the effects that could possibly happen, I was a bit concerned. I don’t need anything else on top of the other two I am battling with. Any advise for me and if I should go ahead and start this.

  • Julie

    I am a chiropractor who specializes also in clinical nutrition. There is a lot of disagreement about it, as you mention, but the experts in the field agree that oxalates are an issue only in leaky gut syndrome (where the gut flora is disrupted, usually due to excessive antibiotics). Oxalates from diet don’t normally get absorbed all that much unless they don’t have the protective flora there. In that case, (and you would need to work with a doctor who specializes in clinical nutrition or functional medicine) you can take a probiotic which contains oxalobacter formagenes is under developement last I heard. Acidophilus is an oxalate eater, but when oxalates are in excess, it is killed off.
    However! the benefits from leafy greens are so vast, I have seen patients health improve dramatically from adding in green smoothies and leafy greens, even in the presence of leaky gut. I highly recommend the green smoothie to everyone without hesitation.
    You are doing great work by promoting the health benefits of greens and all vegetables, glad to see you out there!

    • Sandy

      I was wondering if anyone could guide me…

      Last year my 2 year old son had a urine test and it came up that he had high Oxalate-creatinine ratio levels. After doing more blood tests and renal scan, his calcium in blood was normal and his scan showed no stones. But he still had high oxalates-creatinine levels. He has not been diagnosed with Autism and has had antibiotics three times in his life.

      I have seen two doctors regarding this, one said it was normal as we are Portuguese and Mediterranean children generally have higher oxalates that should decrease the older they get. But the other doctor was more concerned and now has sent my son to a Renal Specialist for a second opinion in August…

      Since I had my son, I have adopted a more vegan lifestyle, not 100% yet but working towards it.

      I did some research online to see what foods contained high levels of Oxalates and it’s all the food my family eat, like almonds, almond milk, kale, spinach, chickpeas, parsley, sweet potatoes, dark chocolate, hummus, tangerines, nuts, wholewheat…now I am so confused as I don’t know what to feed my son :-(

      As we don’t eat/drink any dairy I was giving my son almond milk but that contains high Oxalate so do you think Rice milk would be better?

      And I was drinking the GGS every morning and my son had a glass too, which was fantastic but now I read that blogg that says it could increase his oxalates but it was the only way of him getting his calcium.

      Now he was having his proteins by eating nuts, chickpeas and lentils, but that too has high oxalates.

      Unfortunately, the only alternatives is meat/ fish/ and dairy that apparently have lower oxalates but then it also contains mercury, hormones and antibiotics!!!

      What’s a mom to do???

      The doctor said if his oxalates continue to be high, he might need a steroid treatment! What!!!??? A two year old???!!! Is this man crazy??? 😉

      I am so confused and would appreciate any guidance and advice as nowadays doctors just seem to prescribe medication instead of treating with a healthier diet.

      Please help me, as I am so lost and have done so much research but it’s all so contradicting!

      Any help or advice would be greatly appreciated.

      Thank you!!!

      • DR.KALANTRI ,O.R.


  • Food Babe

    Kimberly – I was so happy to receive your post announcement in my inbox today! Someone posted that article on my Facebook page and wanted to know what I thought about it… I responded in a similar manner and also posted this chart, that shows all the high oxalate foods…. – As you can see Almonds are one of the highest! Now to avoid almonds just seems a bit silly doesn’t it? I’ve been eating those every single day for years and never had a problem!

    Here’s my full response…

    I wouldn’t worry about the oxalates in greens unless you have a condition called Hyperoxaluria or any history of kidney stones. I also do not exclusively use any one green in my diet and rotate through different greens – chards, collards, kale, dandelion, watercress, arugula, romaine, etc… I am actually allergic to spinach so I never use it and don’t recommend juicing it either… but that doesn’t mean you can’t use it throughout your rotation in smoothies. The rotation helps you get different nutrients in your diet without ODing on one specific thing. Here’s a chart that lists all the high oxalate foods – as you can see, there are many high oxalate foods that are very nutritious and eliminating them from your diet would just be silly. For instance Almonds! I’ve been eating almonds almost everyday for years and never had any issues.

  • Margaret Webb

    To isolate one aspect of a food is very similar to how we isolate compounds to be used in pharmaceuticals and how we isolate certain “beneficial” vitamins or minerals to use as supplements. I think this type of mentality has extended into nutrition and we tend to focus on the parts instead of the whole and get very particular and even fearful of it. We tend to forget that food has a synergistic not singular effect on our body. In this way of looking at things one single element is not “the issues” as much as the health of the whole. While not all foods work for every body whole foods form the basis of health for all people.

  • Karo

    Since I began drinking the GGS and following all the other pieces of advice from the Beauty Detox, I feel wonderfully healthy and energized. I do not appreciate the scare tactics that the anti- green smoothie article author was using. It is important to educate people about the issue, but telling them not to bother drinking green smoothies is almost a crime. :)

  • Rhiannon Harmston

    Great read! Absolutely loved it. Surely if someone had an oxalate related condition, they would be aware of it and what foods to avoid. Personally, I couldn’t live without my daily Green Breakfast Smoothie… I love it! ^_^

  • Reza Amani Nasab

    hey Kim
    I’m from Iran and I’ve been using this Amazing Green smoothie, I couldnt belive it’s amazing effects on me ,I ‘ve given the recipe to friends and family, every one is so happy with it. so thank you very very very much for this amzing Recipe.looking forward to your future recipis

  • aCountryVegan

    OMG, I can’t believe this has come up again today. I was on another blog today and the same questions were being asked over there but at least now I know why? Below is my response. This is coming from someone that has a GGS every morning.

    I don’t think you can have too much so long as it’s raw. Here is a quote from Gabriel Cousin’s book, Conscious Eating:
    Organic oxalic acid, defined as that which occurs in nature in its raw form, can actually be beneficial to the system. Once foods containing oxalic acid are cooked, according to the dean of juice therapy and author of Raw Vegetable Juices, Dr. Norman Walker, the oxalic acid becomes dead and irritating substance to the system. He feels that in its cooked form it binds irreversibly with the calcium and prevents calcium absorption. An excess of cooked oxalic acid may also form oxalic acid crystals in the kidney. In the live organic form of oxalic acid, Dr. Walker claims oxalic acid stones and calcium blockage do not occur because the organic oxalic acid can be metabolized appropriately. according to Dr. Walker, oxalic acid in its raw form is one of the important minerals needed to maintain tone and peristalsis of the bowel.

    He also says no to worry about phytates in raw food. The body produces an enzyme called phytase that frees minerals from phytates. This does not work for cooked phytates because it has been denatured and the enzyme no longer fits it well enough to do its job.

    There shouldn’t be side effects of too much oxalates so long as the food is raw. It’s the cooked you need to worry about and then, you could probably get kidney stones and osteoporosis.

    I do not juice very much but have green smoothies daily and almost always have spinach in it. As for Kale and Collards, I use one or the other in my smoothies every other week. On my off week I use some other type of green, whatever is in season which does not have that anti-nutrient. Being a vegan I have my blood tested every 6 months and my calcium levels are well within normal range.

    • Sandra

      I was wondering if anyone could guide me…

      Last year my 2 year old son had a urine test and it came up that he had high Oxalate-creatinine ratio levels. After doing more blood tests and renal scan, his calcium in blood was normal and his scan showed no stones. But he still had high oxalates-creatinine levels.

      I have seen two doctors regarding this, one said it was normal as we are Portuguese and Mediterranean children generally have higher oxalates that should decrease the older they get. But the other doctor was more concerned and now has sent my son to a Renal Specialist for a second opinion in August…

      Since I had my son, I have adopted a more vegan lifestyle, not 100% yet but working towards it.

      I did some research online to see what foods contained high levels of Oxalates and it’s all the food my family eat, like almonds, almond milk, kale, spinach, chickpeas, parsley, sweet potatoes, dark chocolate, hummus, tangerines, nuts, wholewheat…now I am so confused as I don’t know what to feed my son :-(

      As we don’t eat/drink any dairy I was giving my son almond milk but that contains high Oxalate so do you think Rice milk would be better?

      And I was drinking the GGS every morning and my son had a glass too, which was fantastic but now I read that blogg that says it could increase his oxalates but it was the only way of him getting his calcium.

      Now he was having his proteins by eating nuts, chickpeas and lentils, but that too has high oxalates.

      Unfortunately, the only alternatives is meat/ fish/ and dairy that apparently have lower oxalates but then it also contains mercury, hormones and antibiotics!!!

      What’s a mom to do???

      The doctor said if his oxalates continue to be high, he might need a steroid treatment! What!!!??? A two year old???!!! Is this man crazy??? 😉

      I am so confused and would appreciate any guidance and advice as nowadays doctors just seem to prescribe medication instead of treating with a healthier diet.

      Please help me, as I am so lost and have done so much research but it’s all so contradicting!

      Any help or advice would be greatly appreciated.

      Thank you!!!

  • Mary Pomerantz

    We’ve been drinking large quantities of green smoothies for about 2 months and smaller quantities before that since January. Since we increased the size of the smoothies and my husband became a vegan, giving up wheat and caffiene at the same time, he has had an almost total absence of his symptoms from myasthenia gravis. In December this disease went from being localized in one eye to generalized, traveling into his extremities to the point where he couldn’t lift his arms above his chest level without difficulty. A couple of weeks ago, he took down all of the blinds in our kitchen and installed new ones. We are firm believers in the benefits of green smoothies and are further refining our diet to include a lot more raw and a lot more greens. We rotate our greens and everything else we eat as recommended.

  • Andrea

    Dear Kimberly,

    I really appreciated your article! As always, the details you provided were thorough, easy to follow and highly informative. I love how you take a complex subject and present the facts in a way that helps us learn essential facts about nutrition and our bodies in such a way that we can then take it and apply it to our own personal needs.

    Your writing is not only fascinating but very empowering!!!

    Thank you for all that you do!


  • LaLa

    I love my daily Glowing Green Smoothie! I grow most of my own organic fruit, herbs, and vegetables and have the rest delivered by a local organic co-op. My Glowing Green Smoothie recipe changes with the harvest. I can’t imagine anyone claiming that this natural drink can be harmful. It’s a no brainer and an understatement that it is a healthy option.

    I was diagnosed with Irritable Bowel Syndrome about 20 years ago. I have experimented with so many diets, dietary restrictions and combinations of foods since then. Early on I recognized the need to eliminate all processed foods and dairy from my diet, then I cut out meat and most other animal proteins, and then simple carbs and sugars. I stick to a mainly plant based diet. I still eat eggs and occasionally other animal proteins but, I must keep it restricted to very moderate amounts or I will pay the price with agonizing abdominal pain and other horrible, symptoms.

    The cure for this is simple, the glowing green smoothies and copious amounts of water help to cleanse and bring me back to a balanced state of health.

    There may be a few people out there that have special needs that the glowing green smoothie will not address but for most of us it is a miracle food.

    Thank you for sharing all of your knowledge on health and nutrition! I really appreciate all of your posts and recipes!

  • Joanna

    Hi Kimberly,

    I love your Green smoothies, they are truly AMAZING! I feel so much better since I started Phase 1 of your Beauty Detox program.
    Interesting article, you mentioned that we can mix and match our green and fruit. Can you give us some ideas as to what to mix and match? For example have a main recipe and then have a list of greens that we can choose from and also a list of fruits we choose from that way we can make few combinations of your truly amazing green smoothie.
    I love your green smoothie as it is and I would love if you could give us a few recipes for different version of it but equally amazing in taste, pretty please :)


  • Elizabeth Lane

    Dear Kim,

    Thank you, thank you for this article! I didn’t see the source article before I received your response in my e-mail, but had I, my first reaction would have been “Oh no! I’ve been having Green Smoothies every morning! What have I done?!” And then hopefully logic would have set in and I would remember how amazing my husband and I feel as a result of your GGS and your diet suggestions. When public perception starts shifting about anything, I guess detractors come out of the woodwork, but who would have thought there would be a backlash against eating your greens. Actually when I received your e-mail I was sitting in Whole Foods reading an article in Harper’s Bazaar, “Juicing: Is It Bad For You?”. Thank you so much for your book, your advice and your message! Chronic disease is at such an increase in this country and it is not because we are eating too many greens. Thank you, Kimberly.

    • Elizabeth Lane

      Dear Kimberly, I am sorry that I addressed you as Kim in my earlier comment! I didn’t notice that until I sent it!

  • Mandy

    Hi Kimberly,

    I am so sorry that this is unrelated to this topic but I have a question about my health that I am concerned about. I went on a diet of about 1200 calories a day to lose weight and now I have lost my period. I am 5’0 and 100-105 lbs. I used to weigh 120 lbs. I am only 18 years old. I havent had my period for about 5 months now which can classify me as having secondary amherronea(sp?) and I was wondering if you know any way that I can naturally bring my period back? I dont want to get osteoporosis when I am older. Thanks for your help!

  • Healthlover

    Hey Kim!

    I would really appreciate to here back from you on this.

    On your diet plan, i usually only end up eating like 1000 calories a day only. using the recommended serving sizes…. i’m a teenager. and is this enough? i usually am not more hungry than this though. should i be worried?

    i just don’t think it seems ‘normal’ to eat that small amount of calories compared to other people that would be anorexic

  • Antje

    Thank you!

    I have a question I have always wanted to ask you: why don’t you recommend Wheat Grass? It’s also green and it seems to be so popular!
    I have grown some and put it into the green smoothie. It tastes good, but is it okay for the Vitamix?

  • Hannah

    I was in shock when I first read the article from the Healthy Home Economist. It just didn’t make sense.

    The more I have read on it, and now what you have said have helped so much.

    Thank you!

  • leah

    Hello … I have tried many different things to get some life in me … including a all raw diet… The Gaps diet and other diets .All of those have made me feel good for a time , but not full of life! I am a mother of 6 and have been nursing my 2 month old . I will tell you what ,since drinking your green smoothie …i have been filled with energy and JoY!! I have tried other green smoothies and felt yuck after . This one is so easy on my tummy and a blessing to my body. I will keep on eating this way ..because it has really been a answer to prayer. Thank you !

  • Trainerpack

    Blending helps your digestion access nutrients better. For max benefits its a good idea to ingest immediately after.

    I love mixing watermelon with my greens. It totally changes the taste and makes it taste like a smoothie full of fruit.

  • Sonia Paddyfoote

    Hi Kimberly, I purchase you book i was excited when I read about your article in The Natural Awakening Magazine.I am doing the green smoothie every morning,I made some of the soups,I am a vegetarian so my meals are mainly fruits and veggies raw and steam.My question is i would like to lose at least 35 lbs and was hoping Your Book would help but nothing is happening to the weight.It is difficult to follow all the recipes as stated in the book .1 its costly and it take time to prepared I cant take salad to work I dont have place to put its a touch situation.What can ouy suggest,by the way I did my blood work just get the result today,Total cholesteral is 214 andLDL is 137 I need to lose the weight I know that will help tremendously.Any suggestion. Thanks

  • Zenimue

    Been vegan for over almost 12 years but I’ve lost at least 20 pounds since adding green smoothys to my daily routine that & avoiding the microwave are really the main changes I made wish I’d done it sooner! After recently hearing a Jamie Oliver TED talk it’s clear that adding green smoothies to the SAD would be highly beneficial for any1 not already drinking em.
    It’s been fun 4 me when traveling 2 try local green drinks tried an amazing one at a cafe in Santa Fe called body it was their S u p e r H e r o S m o o t h i e
    Blueberry, mango, strawberry, cacao, chlorella, hemp, goji berries, maca, apple juice, vitamin C,
    Vitamineral Green, spiralina, chia seeds, bee pollen.
    In a coconut water base OMG it was divine & I felt so energized after having it! Thanks for being an inspiring green smoothie advocate =)

  • Melinda Nguyen

    I think that certain people should control their intake of oxalate containing foods and this link has a list of the foods as well the as the amounts.Everything in moderation is my motto. I’ve tried your green smoothie and I feel like it is my daily serving of vegetables/fruit and it is so convenient. I have three different fruits as well as high amounts of fiber to benefit my digestive tract. I do not have it everyday in the morning as recommended. If i was not drinking this, I would have less fiber and less fruit in a day (Americans are reported to not meet the daily recommendations for fiber and fruit anyways). So thank you Kim for sharing your recipe with me!
    I’ve also done a counseling session on the subject of kidney stones and in honesty, oxalates are most linked to kidney stones which could be due to obesity or metabolic malfunction. Cutting back on vitamin C supplements, increasing dietary calcium intake and of course limiting intake of oxalates can help reduce the incidence of kidney stones from oxalates.

    Thank you,
    Melinda Nguyen
    Student Nutritionist
    Framingham, MA

  • Jessica

    Speaking from experience, the autistic also experience this high oxalate problem so it’s not quite as rare as you would think, considering autism is touching 1 in 88 children now. Reducing oxalates in their diets (my boys have this problem, including my non-autistic child) reduced their symptoms greatly. They can dump oxalates significantly enough to see the crystals in their urine! So while I agree with you that we don’t want to scare people off, we do however want to educate people who have disorders that can mask elevated oxalate levels. It wouldn’t be wise for everyone to just assume green smoothies are the way to go, as a way towards good health, they CAN make matters worse, in which case, I would also expect their symptoms to increase rather than decrease.

    The reason oxalates become out of control for some is two-fold. A person who has taken antibiotics or has an overgrowth of bad bacteria will have reduced oxalabactor formigenes in their GI tract and it’s this good bacteria that is solely responsible for degrading oxalates. It cannot be replaced with probiotics so once it’s gone, it’s gone (another reason to only use antibiotics, if it is absolutely necessary)! The second issue contributing to an increase in oxalates is leaky gut, which is perpetuated by the gut imbalance. The oxalate crystals get into the blood stream allowing the crystals to form in vital organs like the brain, eyes, a previous injury location, the kidneys….etc. This is how kidney stones develop.

    I just wanted to educate your readers a bit further from the perspective of a mother who has to deal with this highly symptomatic illness. My children do not have hyperoxaluria, but they do need a low oxalate diet. That doesn’t mean they can’t have a green smoothie, it just means their “green” might be different than your choice of “green”. =)

    • Sandy

      I was wondering if anyone could guide me…

      Last year my 2 year old son had a urine test and it came up that he had high Oxalate-creatinine ratio levels. After doing more blood tests and renal scan, his calcium in blood was normal and his scan showed no stones. But he still had high oxalates-creatinine levels. He hasn’t been diagnosed with autism so don’t really know if it is related.

      I have seen two doctors regarding this, one said it was normal as we are Portuguese and Mediterranean children generally have higher oxalates that should decrease the older they get. But the other doctor was more concerned and now has sent my son to a Renal Specialist for a second opinion in August…

      Since I had my son, I have adopted a more vegan lifestyle, not 100% yet but working towards it.

      I did some research online to see what foods contained high levels of Oxalates and it’s all the food my family eat, like almonds, almond milk, kale, spinach, chickpeas, parsley, sweet potatoes, dark chocolate, hummus, tangerines, nuts, wholewheat…now I am so confused as I don’t know what to feed my son :-(

      As we don’t eat/drink any dairy I was giving my son almond milk but that contains high Oxalate so do you think Rice milk would be better?

      And I was drinking the GGS every morning and my son had a glass too, which was fantastic but now I read that blogg that says it could increase his oxalates but it was the only way of him getting his calcium.

      Now he was having his proteins by eating nuts, chickpeas and lentils, but that too has high oxalates.

      Unfortunately, the only alternatives is meat/ fish/ and dairy that apparently have lower oxalates but then it also contains mercury, hormones and antibiotics!!!

      What’s a mom to do???

      The doctor said if his oxalates continue to be high, he might need a steroid treatment! What!!!??? A two year old???!!! Is this man crazy??? 😉

      I am so confused and would appreciate any guidance and advice as nowadays doctors just seem to prescribe medication instead of treating with a healthier diet.

      Please help me, as I am so lost and have done so much research but it’s all so contradicting!

      Any help or advice would be greatly appreciated.

      Thank you!!!

  • Michelle

    Hello, Kimberly I think that you are beautiful and I love your book. I want to get started on eating healthy but I am under weight. I love to eat and its hard for me to gain weight but I want to eat healthy but not lose weight I actually want to gain. Your book doesnt talk about that and I wanted to know if you had anything helpful that I can incorporate with the diet plans that you have in your book to help me gain and not lose.


    • ED

      In my experiences working with Naturopathic Drs, they would incorporate avocadoes into those diets who needed to gain. They contain all the good fats! Almonds and walnuts would be good for this as well.

  • Kim

    I personally love the green smoothies. I recently went out of town and didn’t drink it for several days and felt the negative effects. I was wondering if you would suggest drinking one of those green powders when traveling or when you can’t juice as a alternative? Thanks!

  • JJ

    Sweet Kim, Question? I understand that pure water is the beverage of choice….. but how do you feel about Propel Zero or low sugar Gatorade? Is that ok to drink or is it harmful because of the artificial sweetner?? Thank you for you..I am new at this journey to health of whole foods. I am having a difficult time letting go of my daily diet coke habit…& honestly, pure water just gets so boring…but I am trying & I truly want this new way of life!!! Love,B

    • ED

      I have no problem with drinking water and nothing else, but a lot of people do. My husband’s grandmother did find a drink by Sobe called “lifewater”- this is something I’ll even drink, because it has 0 calories and NO artificial sweeteners… They use stevia which I was thrilled to find out!!!

  • Laura

    Sadly I kinda have to agree with the article about green smoothies. I was always a healthy eater and healthy person until I introduced green smothies to my diet. After only drinking them for month I started to brake out on my chin and my neck some days was feeling lightheaded with zero energy. At first I thought maby my body is getting rid of the toxins or somthing but then it got worst. I started to get stomach ache (never had one before- ever!) along with digestion problems- also, never ever had them before! I stoped drinking green smothies and within few weeks with a healthy diet I was able to heal myself. Then again with everyone saying how healhy green smoothies are and how great everyone feels after drinking them I decided to give them another try- and I so wish I wouldn’ve done that. My stomach ache came back along with headaches. Again I had digestive problems, constipation (weird as it’s supposed to be opposite!) and with all digestive issues I wasnt’t getting all the nutriants even on my healthy diet. My hair started to fall out my nails became brittle .It been a few month since I stoped drinking green smothies but this time I couldn’t heal this fast. My digestion is ruined. It is better since I stoped drinking smothies but I still I don’t feel as healthy as I was before. My hair and nails are still weak so my body is not getting all the nutirans it needs because of my digestion:( And now reading your post on oxalates I think I should try to avoid greens like spinach and see how it goes. I so wish to have my health back on track.
    This post was not ment to be anti -smoothie. I’m glad that many of you feel good drinking them and I’m sure it is good for most of us. But I just had to share this so people who are just starting to introduce smoothies to their diet know, that if you get ANY bad simptoms from dinking it stop and never try it again- it is not for you. Learn from my misstakes.

    p.s excuse my bad english.

  • Robyn

    Qualifier: post above as placed on the above-mentioned site. The misinformation is nothing short of astonishing.

  • Rachel

    I’m torn on the smoothies. Felt great on them at first, was having two a day and then I started getting brittle hair and nails and lots of fine lines/premature aging. Also weight loss in the beginning followed by a blood sugar roller coaster and weight gain/bloating.

    When I juice I don’t have these issues. I find I do best on a higher fat diet with one large meal per day supplemented by raw and steamed greens and green juices.

  • Diane Ferguson

    My name is Diane and I can only say since drinking the green shakes my cholesterol went from 278 to 214! I have my blood work to prove it.. It really works and for people to think drinking spinach romaine celery, apples pears and a banana is bad.. Really need to do their homework.. I feel better look Better than I have ever felt… I drink one for breakfast and one for lunch with a salad… Thank you Darlos for giving me Kimberly ‘ s book .. The Beauty Detoxi.Solution.. It changed my life and I never had to take meds for my cholesterol … A true believer … Diane Ferguson

  • LiliUK

    Not everyone does well on the green smoothies. I am not sure why but I have heard some cases, mine included. Perhaps it suits some people better to have them whole as supposed to blended? Or perhaps the large amounts consumed typically in a smoothie (compared to say, a salad) can be detrimental to some?
    I can use myself as an example which while anecdotal is hardly scientific and I think it is unprofessional/unethical to say- ‘well so and so worked just fine for me’. One person’s experience does not mirror that of the majority and true science focuses on the majority. Certainly we CAN all benefit from eating plenty of greens/vegetables and I am in no way discounting their overall health benefits. Back to me- I started developing boils when I drank the first I too thought it was detoxing but they kind of continued till I cup back from drinking it 6 mornings a week (if anyone asks- 32oz) to just 2 or 3 mornings a week. I still have horrible scars from the boils which thankfully are healing. I did read somewhere that green smoothies do cause detoxification which needs to be handled slowly and carefully or you can get autotoxicity and a host of other problems. It’s a complex process and for some, just drinking GGS daily can trigger detox symptons they may not understand or handle appropriately. In a nutshell listen to your body, do your research and remember that moderation and balance in all things is a good idea.

  • KB

    Humans are NOT designed to eat exclusively raw foods. We have been cooking with fire for 300,000-400,000 years. If the average generation length is 22 years, there have been about 14-18 THOUSAND generations of humans since fire was mastered. This is more than enough time for our bodies to evolve and adapt to the new cooked food environment.

    • johnnybegood

      And humans + are ancestors have been eating Raw since the dawn of time. Just because a few fools started to destroy their natural diet and a few more decided to follow it doesn’t make it “the right way” – fire -destroys- nutrients. Several studies prove that and it’s common sense. Never a good thing. A raw diet has made me feel so much younger and healthier personally, i would not go back. I rather stick to what our common ancestor, the gorilla diet. Anything else is just unnatural.

      • ED

        Actually, some nutrients in certain foods are only able to be absorbed by our bodies when cooked, like certain nutrients in carrots and tomatoes. While I’m not against a raw food diet and eat plenty of salads and green smoothies (with no negative symptoms coming thereof), I’m also not against cooked food as well! Variety is key.

        • Victrola

          I have to absolutely agree about the (even slight) cooking adding to ease of absorption. If someone has cystitis, for example, eating raw tomatoes will aggravate it. I’ve read of people having issues with nuts, for example, which makes sense since they do need to be soaked. I also had issues with consuming a lot of raw kale which disappeared once I turned to kale chips with evco and balanced out the ‘green’ raw stuffs, substituting spirulina for the green input. Adding healhty fats (like EVCO) helped a great deal. Always steam my broccoli lightly before blending. It’s not in our heads and too much of a good thing is sometimes not that great.

    • rehmat

      Well said!

  • Emilie

    I’m so happy you wrote an article on this because I was just googling “green smoothies and breast feeding” as we’re expecting our first child next week. I just wanted to see if I should reduce my smoothie intake by a bit or change ingredients prior to breast feeding and I saw the article about how bad green smoothies are. I was freaked out and immediately thought “I wish I knew what Kimberly’s opinion is on this!” Then I found your wonderful article :) Thank You!

    • Elva

      I think green smoothies are only bad if that is all you are consuming daily. Another thing, I did not see where all of the people’s comments said green smoothies are bad. Maybe just do them once in a while. So now this person has everyone scared of even thinking of trying green smoothies.

  • Lily

    I have followed a mostly raw vegan diet for twelve years and vegan for almost 20. I did cure most of my health issues on this diet. However, I have also developed a problem with calcium oxalate crystal buildup in my kidneys and toes. Perhaps it is an underlying pre-existing condition thay I have, but I cannot rule out diet as a possible and potential contributing factor. The raw food diet is not right for wveryone and should not for.example be adopted by someone with hyperthyroidism. Typing on phone sorry for.typos. Aloha! Blessings to you all…

  • Alagu Ram

    Hi Kimberly,

    Spinach is a ingredient the GGS; I have read that raw spinach has goitrogens that could reduce your body’s ability to absorb iodine from foods. This could lead to someone developing hypothyroidism; what’s your take on this?

    Thank you,

  • Fran

    Six months ago I changed my lifestyle to virtually eliminate processed foods, sugars and eat a diet of whole natural foods. I had been enjoying green smoothies every day as well as plenty of a variety of green leafy vegetables with other meals and lots of probiotics – making my own kefir, sauerkraut and so on. I was feeling great….then wham I started having stomach aches which gradually became worse and worse, it took a while to isolate the culprits but I have become sensitive to virtually all green leafy vegetables – especially spinach! I have no idea why and would love some ideas, my body is trying to tell me something!

    • Britt

      I understand what you are saying! I also have experienced exactly what you are mentioning at the “6 month mark”. I was drinking GGS everyday and no sugar/gluten/processed, only clean raw foods and probiotic salads. I experienced awfull stomach pains and cramps, would actually vomit after drinking the smoothie or eating raw veggie snacks. I stopped the smoothies for a couple months, mainting small salads at dinner and started juicing ~ I have been juicing successfully for two months now and stomach aches no more! I think removing the heavier fiber in the smoothies helped me personally. I was having 32oz smoothies daily 7x/week. It caught up with me quick, yet with juicing no problem. I am able to maintain a healthy vegan lifestyle without the pains. Hopes this helps, because I know what pain it was and not knowing why or what was happening while trying to be healthy! :) Still love everything Kimberly offers, just had tweak for my personal body after following the book word by word.

  • syd

    Reactions are individual. After doing major healthy green smoothies, I began having horrible bladder and gut problems. Really devastating. My doc finally had me test for oxalates and they were through the roof. When I stopped the smoothies, my issues went away. So, to dismiss the potential impacts of oxalates as rubbish is, well, rubbish. Green smoothies may be GREAT for you. And, I say, great, keep going! But, for some, that isn’t the case. It’s not an all or nothing thing.

    All the best.

    • Vee

      Well said. Thank you.

  • Kim

    I’ve followed the beauty detox diet with tons of GGS for almost two years, and completely transformed my health, so I’m a believer! However, recently I did develop a kidney stone, ended up in the hospital, and had symptoms of a bladder infection for a month, however the doctor’s could not detect an infection (they still tried to give me antibiotics :p). I’m also feeling more and more weak and losing that energy I initially had- I can barely get chores done around the house let alone exercise! My dad is prone to kidney stones, so now I’m really starting to wonder if this oxalate stuff is an issue for me. This is terrible news, because I love the way I eat! I can’t imagine going back to a solid breakfast and eating meat. I am also a mom of two toddlers, so I am guilty of eating the same thing all too often, eventhough it’s considered healthy- that is also probably part of the equation. For now, I’m going to focus on adding a lot more variety, still consume smoothies, but cut back on the green portions, and get more creative with coconut as that seems to be neutral ground for people with fungal/digestive/oxalate issues like me. I hope I get to the bottom of this and increase my energy soon! It all gets so confusing, but I do trust Kimberley Snyder more than anyone out there!

  • lauren

    My husband has done green smoothies for awhile. Then he started to eat spinach salads. Within a month he had kidney stones. It’s too bad, he loves all the green stuff, but the worst pain of his life passing a kidney stone convinced him that not everyone has the same nutrition needs.

  • glenda

    I have been a vegetarian for 30 years; except that I eat eggs infrequently; I don’t eat milk or milk products. Before now, I have never had a problem eating anything, and my weight has been stable (134lbs, 5’7″ tall) since high school (I’m over 50). As an RN on a GI surgical floor, I promote vegetables. That’s why I’m taking the time to share this; much as I love the idea of raw veggies–they are not for everyone.

    I was shocked when a year ago I decided to detox with green smoothies and developed a health problem. I imagine many will not believe my symptoms, because I have difficulty believing many things I read online, and in fact, have a hard time believing my symptoms myself.

    Nursing patients with colon cancer is a great motivator to eat right, and I decided to detox with raw veggies and a Vitamix. However, after drinking a smoothie of raw kale, celery and carrots daily–I developed chest pain, angina. I kept up the smoothies for 6 months; it didn’t occur to me it could be a cause. (As a nurse, I monitor hearts, and know the difference between epigastric pain from GERD, indigestion, or gall bladder inflammation, and angina. My chest pain was heavy, aching, radiating to my left armpit and shoulder blade. I went to the ER twice to be sure I wasn’t having a heart attack.)

    It was only when I began experiencing a frightening constriction in my throat immediately after the smoothie, that I stopped taking them. To my surprise my chest pain subsided. I still don’t understand the connection. But being the diehard that I am, I got chlorella tablets to persist on my detox, and the pain returned. Now I can’t eat any raw vegetables, not even a salad. I had to experiment to be sure of cause and effect, but any raw foods will start the chest pain 3 hours after eating them and it goes on for hours. (I now have a wonderful cardiologist who ordered many tests and I do not have atherosclerosis or clogged arteries. As it turns out, over half of people who die of heart attacks don’t have the common risk factors like high cholesterol. Many people die of heart attacks due to vasospasm–the artery just squeezes down itself.)

    At this point, even cooked leafy greens (my favorite!) will start the pain. It’s pretty hard to be a vegetarian and not eat greens. Sweet potatoes, grains etc.–no problem. So now I am an any-color-but-green vegetarian. And I’m in search of a naturopath or alternative practitioner who can help with this.

    • Matt L

      VERY Interesting! Thanks so much for your post. I had SUCH A SIMILAR experience. Started doing daily green smoothies and would get majorly sharp chest pains. I THINKKK it had something to do with the massive amounts of dairy (lot’s of milk and whey protein shakes) that I was consuming PRIOR, as in… several months BEFORE I started doing the green smoothies…. I ended up with a severe gut infection/GERD/borderline Chrohn’s/major food allergies and tried doing the green smoothies to correct it. Somehow I feel like the oxalates ended up improperly binding with the excess calcium in my tissues and forming sharp pain spots… Also, the goitrogens (in the raw greens) seem to have contributed to my messed up thyroid.

      To make a long story short.. I’ve had to go mostly Paleo and cut out chocolate, beets, wheat and nuts/seeds AND take dessicated thyroid to get back in shape. BAsically… a LOW oxalate diet and boost/balance my thyroid and other glands.

    • margot

      I am glat to find your post. I just went to see a doc yesterday because of the chest pain. I started to drink green smoothies last month and I got pain from time to time sometimes in my breast bone sometimes under the breast tc but yesterday I got the hearburn and it was very paintful. I really belive that it is something relatedto my smoothie. The doctor thinks that it is the reflux that I have.
      Thank you for sharing your story. I will stop drinking green smoothie and see if I feel better.

    • Lisa

      I am certified Ayurveda Wellness Consultant and study nutrition. The most important I am intolerant to oxalates and can help you with your problem.
      Eating greens all the time is not recommended and they should be eaten at certain time of the day and prepared properly.

  • Britt Bongiardina

    Its obvious that Shakira’s kid will be a famous musician, a soccer superstar or maybe both! Clearly I love that girl!

  • HMiMouCh

    Thanks Kimberly Snyder … I like All your articles its amazing !

  • Brian

    I think another factor people need to consider is Alpha Lipoic Acid (ALA) is found in things like Kale. The followers of Andrew Cutler’s heavy metal chelation protocol actually use ALA as a chelator. They use a half-life of 3-4 hours to take small doses of ALA (ie: 12.5mg) around the clock in supplement form to draw mercury out of the brain. ALA is also an antioxidant. If it’s taken in large doses it can cause a temporary euphoric feeling followed by a crash. If the body is under a bacterial load, the Glutathione that the body previously had tied up in various free-radical activity is now freed by ALA to move metals around (Glutathione being the body’s natural chelator). See Boyd Haley’s video’s on YouTube about this topic. So if you’re jamming an entire bushel of Kale or Collard Greens into your juicer, expect a jolt of ALA in that big pint you’re downing. It’s a good idea to make sure you have your mercury amalgam fillings properly removed by a dentist certified by DAMS or Hal Huggins before consuming ALA or it will just make you miserable. If you have the fillings removed, you may still want to take it easy on the Kale. I know it makes me a little messed up – being heavy metal toxic myself. And of course lead toxicity will make people oxalate sensitive – they’re more likely to get gout. The lower oxalate diet may just make them a little happier in the short term while they are dealing with the problem. Otherwise, I think juicing is awesome if done with organic veggies in a rotation. Phytonutrients and enzymes are said to be really amazing for mitochondria and cell repair.

  • Phoenixx

    The problem may be oxalates, but even worse than that is that doing extreme form of anything is bad for the body. Detoxing through raw foods should only be done for a short time. Raw food diet can actually end up hurting you, causing you to miss vital nutrients or ingest too much of something that isn’t good for the body long term. Try macrobiotic, that may work better. Humans are omnivores. If you have to do raw or vegan, please use a nutritionist. I say this because I almost caused severe damage to myself with this lifestyle over a period of years. You have to be careful.

    • alin

      Can you please explain what you mean by “I almost caused severe damage to myself “? I would like to be informed on what types of foods to eat or not to eat, as I am a vegan right now. I am trying to gear towards a raw vegan, however now I’m skeptical. Thank you in advance!

    • Az

      Can you elaborate on this severe damage that you almost caused and what happened

    • Scott

      I have at least 2 green smoothies a day, I east other food but little meat and almost no dairy. If you only had juice or green smoothies I am sure there will always be people out there that will have some condition or a combination of things in their lives that can cause negative effects. Think combination. You need exercise, and the right foods. I had been eating “healthy” for years but when I heard of “green smoothies” I thought, Man I really do NOT get even 1/4 the veggies I need in a week. I had a disk bulge that made me so I could not walk, after physical therapy I got bake to the gyn almost normal but had some issues sleeping. The FIRST day I had one of these I slept soundless! I think it is due to the natural anti-inflammatories and all the other nutrients my body did not get to repair and take care of this injury .

  • Rachel

    There is a history of stones in my family; I myself passed one about 8-10 years ago, when I was still young.

    Lately, I have been diagnosed with Hashimoto’s Hypothyroid, and so I started eliminating gluten from my life. Hence, I gradually started taking in Chia seeds, brown rice, Quinoa, flax seeds, almond milk and butter instead of peanut butter, and other healthy items. A month ago, I passed a stone for the second time in my life; and I passed a third one within the same month.

    it did take quite some time for me to realize that these items were high Oxalate foods, and were the cause of my sufferings. in fact, in my case, this proves to be a direct cause-effect link. Hence, I am now trying to eliminate them from my diet, but with a diet that is already gluten-free, eliminating grains, nuts and most leafy greens proves to be very difficult.


  • Susan

    Thank you for articulating the exact thing that I was thinking when I read that interview last year. I actually like Sarah and her blog but it’s a little over the top sometimes and this particular post falls into that category. Never one to throw the baby out with the bath water, I enjoy a variety of different blogs and viewpoints so thank you for adding your perspective to the fray.

  • Elle

    Thank you for addressing that in some cases there is the possibility that dietary oxalate can increase your risk for stone formation. I worked in research that studied this fact in hereditary stone-formers – yes, it is a small population, but they exist and the risk is real. Another thing to also note is that oxalate stone formation can also be decreased if the appropriate amount of calcium is also consumed in a 1000mg Ca+2: 750mg ox ratio – study was published in 2012 in Urology.

  • Mark Glomski

    “fear based, sensationalist” yeah, that’s what I think about all the 2nd hand smoke propaganda out there.

  • http://facebook Kitty Peterson

    I have been green juicing for about a month now. Everyday. I’m not much of a vegetable eater. Mostly packaged or canned vegetables and then very little. Very little fruits also.
    I figure I get a ton of raw vegetables a day that normally I would never have gotten in years. I must be getting something good in my body.
    I never before ate kale or parsley or flax seed but now added all that with apples, bananas, lettuce, carrots, spinach, celery, lemon with the juice, bell peppers, …
    I am hoping for better health. I guess time will tell.
    I’m 66 and pretty active. I do a lot of volunteer activity.
    I was wondering if maybe I’m drinking too much of this stuff. I do eat other things too but they would not be considered good food for me..
    I’m not looking to lose weight on this but that’s always a good thing I feel. I just want a healthier life.
    Someone tell me I’m on the right track. Thank you…

    • Alan

      Kitty you are on the right track. Any amount of fruit and vegetables you can get into ones body is good. My opinion is that when juicing one misses out on fibre, which is very important for proper digestion and regularity. When I was consuming too many fruits I developed cracks in the corners of my lips. Added more veges and this symptom disappeared. Good health and long life <3

    • Kat

      I believe if you can get vegetables and fruits into your diet, anyway is a good way.
      I blend (Vitamix) my vegetables and fruits therefore, I get all the benefits along with fiber. No way could I get 4-5 servings of vegetables in one day and the other you are the less you eat. I’m not a breakfast eater so my green protein smoothies keep me healthy without any side effects. Agreed that you need to mix up your foods daily, weekly, moderation is the key. Here’s to eating healthy.

  • Cristi

    There is a valid point to being aware of what oxalates are. I recently jumped on the bandwagon of juicing and trying to get my kids to drink the green smoothies etc… Then this week I found out that my daughter is officially autistic, although really high functioning autistic. Her urine test showed her oxalates off the charts high. Now we are putting her on a low oxalate diet to try to control the symptoms of autism that she deals with. I see the truth in the 1st writer’s concerns. Most autistic people that have been tested show high oxalates. There are a ton of families out there with autistic children that are unaware of this research (new as of 2004) and help that is available for their child or adult family member. Hoping to make more awareness of Autism and the Low Oxalate Diet. Thanks for reading!

    • Nora

      I wish you the strength and resources to help your daughter.
      The article states “Properly functioning metabolism and digestion offer protective benefits against oxalate related illnesses (see above). What’s the best way to ensure your metabolism and digestion function properly” A properly functioning metabolism and digestion offers protective benefits for all health issues including autism. Check out :
      Gut and Psychology Syndrome: Natural Treatment for Autism, Dyspraxia, A.D.D., Dyslexia, A.D.H.D., Depression, Schizophrenia by Natasha Campbell-McBride, MD. The author was motivated by her son’s autism and through healing his gut health through natural dietary changes, saw great improvements in her son.

  • http://KimberlySnider Joan Colby

    About Oxalic acid, i don’t think we have to worry to much in our Green Smoothies , it is found to be in but a few vegetables like rhubarb and sinich I am sorry , that letter doesn’t work on my comuter as you see. But those two when cooked really have a lot of oxalics released , But only when cooked. Dr. Norman Walker that has the Juice book and a wonderfull man , stated these facts and even said a little doesn’t hurt although never eat cooked sinich or canned . He said kidney stones can beformed through , he said when Oxalics are combined with calcium makes it insoluble and can form stones in the kidneys or gallbladder.
    But only when it is cooked , then it is broken down and into larger amounts if s inch is combined with mostley carrots for juicing it is fine and good it is very good for you. It is always more carrots and smaller amounts of other greens for treating different ailments carrots being the most. I have been juicing for 40 years but now do the raw blending vegetables although Kale i think needs some light steaming. I dont anymore use it in my blender i use baby greens and an avocado about a 1/3 avocado i bring it in last which gives it , its smoothness and they are sooo good for you . I use a half a sheet of Nori and maybe add some wheat grass juice or chlorella you can use the grass as is just cut it small and use it in blender with all and blend all, sometimes adding maybe mango or something. wonderfull and very healthy . The body takes amino acids out of anything it gets there is( rotein that letter doesnt work sorry) even in vegetables and srouts, and the other green foods concentraited in jars from your health food store. So when they say you need to get it from meat and animal sources the body doens’t care what source as long as recognizes it and i think the first diet for mankind was fruit and vegetable and herbs for healing so eating for health makes sense in that way. Bombarding the body with meats and hard to digest things only set it back , it takes about 4 days in some , to even digest meats if taken with a salad its much faster. Joan

    • Laurie H.

      I believe I am battling with Candida Yeast. I am trying to clear up one fact mentioned in the article. Are smoothies bad for you if you are dealing with yeast?? What would the best mixture be for the smoothie??

      • greta

        Joan, try cleaning your keyboard or at least turn it upside down and shake it a little… often, just a wee crumb wedged ‘tween button & backing keeps the letter from being pressed. Even though Joan might never come back & see this, I am posting anyway as others may have same troubles.

        Oh,by the way… green smoothies rock!!

    • greta

      Regarding keyboard characters that don’t work:

      Joan, try cleaning your keyboard or at least turn it upside down and shake it a little… often, just a wee crumb wedged ‘tween button & backing keeps the letter from being pressed. Even though Joan might never come back & see this, I am posting anyway as others may have same troubles.

      Oh,by the way… green smoothies rock!!

  • Megan

    Thanks for responding to that article. It was the first thing that came up on Google for a “green smoothie” search and is sure to scare people :)

  • Shelley

    Yes, you are probably right, for most people when fat metabolism and digestion work well. I guess I have the perfect storm of health problems to have oxalate issues – bad fat metabolism and a leaky gut. Thankfully, I have a faster marker than kidney stones: a high PTH that causes confusion, memory loss, and more. (Parathyroid hormone is released when the body is not getting enough calcium from digestion and signals the body to pull it out of the bones.)

    I always wondered why my PTH remained high and I still did not feel well after years on a paleo diet until my PTH went through the roof on a green juice fast last week (both the paleo diet and most veggies used for juicing contain high oxalate foods that bind calcium). Of course it did not help that I was not digesting fats (which also binds up calcium). On the bright side, I think I have just found my answers. I think a low oxalate paleo diet is possible, though not as sexy, for sure.

    • Anthony

      I also had a lot of digestion and bowel issues, I struggled with absorption of b12, fat absorpiton and wasn’t digestion food in general, I had severe weight loss, anxiety, depression, I tried many diets, also attempted going raw as it made sense and I felt good at the start, I was including a lot of raw greens but started getting really sick, 3 different doctors suggested getting scope and said I have irritable bowel, I also thought I was gluten intolerant among other things, I later discovered Ayurveda, I found out my dosha (body type) and started working on balancing my body elements with food and lifestyle choices, I find too many greens cool my body down and my body gets damp, cold, runny nose, loose stools, gas and speed up my system, also I get sensitive with to much oxalic acid, my body feels strange, I cant describe it, I just need to get the ratio right, but I can now im back on the greens in moderate doses and feel great for it, I also know how to prepare my greens so they go into my body as a balanced meal rather than chase it down with another meal later to bring me back in line. My digestion is a lot better and I feel pretty good. Hope I didnt blow u away with all this info, I know how you must feel at the moment. It very handy to know what kinda foods balance your body type, kinda like comfort food but not unhealthy.
      good luck

  • Vanesa Kosco

    Hi again It seems I can’t read, as I just checked your site and saw your notice on on-site camping. Sorry about that. Will check in later in the year for all the registration information. Thanks again.

  • Jen

    This article and all the comments were very interesting- I googled “abdominal pain and green smoothies” and it brought me here. I’ve tried starting with green smoothies five or six times now, always with the same effect on day 2 (the second drink, I just had it for breakfast)….sharp abdominal pain. In the past, sometimes bloating, radiating to the low back pain. The most recent attempt- sharp epigastric pain then overall abdominal pain and fatigue (probably related to hurting like hell). I was able to lie down for a couple of hours, then eventually it passed. But not a way to live one’s life.

    Oddly, I can eat a spinach salad and i am fine. But a spinach smoothie? No. And kale raw at all? Really no. I dont’ know if chewing foods (and partially pre-digesting by mixing the chewed food with salivary amylase) is what makes the difference? I just know that for me, the greens smoothies really do NOT work.

    I am very gluten intolerant and somewhat soy and dairy intolerant. Have recurrent gastritis and some malabsorption issues. Naturopath not sure if this is due to low HCL or too much. But his recommendations were to cook ALL vegetables, that they are easier to digest. He did suggest the greens smoothies but we found that they always made me feel ten times worse.

    The smoothies do NOT work for everyone. Oxylates? Yeah, maybe so for a lot of people, but it can also be the simple mechanical problem that raw veg is harder to digest than cooked. Or people might have compromised guts from leaky gut, inflammation, damage to microvilli, any number of things. Probably the bottom line is the greens smoothies might work well for someone who has no GI issues at all. Or predisposition to kidney stones. I’ve also wondered if it had something to do with acidity of the vegetables in the smoothies- it kills me to add ginger and lemon, so this last time I omitted- it was very simple: apple, spinach, cucumber. That’s it. And I got bad pain. So perhaps if a person has gastritis- there’s some acidity that can irritate. Gastritis and/ or reflux can cause epigastric pain, sternal pain, pain that radiates to arm, chest, jaw… the RN that commented about chest pain after smoothies, wonder if this could be an issue for her (others mention chest pain too).

    It seems like yet another fad thing to me, and not a particularly natural way to eat- normally we chew our food, and there’s a reason for that. It helps facilitate digestion. … juicing probably a lot safer for those with GI issues.

    • Deborawh

      You may be having gas pains from the air bubbles created by blending-they can be very painful. Vegetables are alkaline. You may wish to try ‘chewing your smoothie’ to get the digestive juices in your mouth mixed with the foods in the smoothie and sip it slowly. If you are not used to consuming a lot of raw foods it can take some time for your digestive tract to adjust. Also be aware of food combining. If you eat a meat meal and follow it with a smoothie you will create problems for your digestive tract. The meat takes a long time to digest and the fruits and veggies only 15-30 mins, so that they are waiting there behind the meat and beginning to ferment which is not a good situation for your digestive tract.

      • Peter

        This just nonsensical advice and dangerous to tell people to continue if they’re getting bad symptoms from juicing. Not everyone can handle raw vegetables and fruit because we are all different physically.

  • Lisa

    I had many problems in the past and still have some left but I realised that one of the most annoing is food intolerances including oxalate intolerances. I know it is the result of high toxicity from Candida infection which is the result of adrenal fatigue, family predisposition, stress, hormonal drugs, antibiotics, and anticids. I am on low oxalate diet and had kidney stones in the past. Now I detox myself with help of Ayurveda ( have certification ) and nutrition. Weak digestion should be improved, hormones and burine should be checked for oxalates and Candida.
    As Ayurveda consultant I check the pulse and determine the level of toxins.
    Ironically I can`t take much supplements I recommend but just change of lifestyle and diet can help.

  • wj

    I posted a comment on the HHE’s article a couple of weeks ago, calling into question her credentials for giving out information like that and chastising the other commenters for also giving out medical advice they are not qualified to give out. She of course didn’t authorize the comment to be posted. That tells me she is just running the blog for the ad revenue or whatever and could care less about anyone’s health. I wasn’t surprised. I’m horrified by some of the information that is being tossed around in and in response to that article as fact…in the author’s case, without bothering to cite any studies. (Which, given that she doesn’t list any actual degrees or experience in this subject, you’d think she’d want to do.) The attitude among the commenters who disagree with the author is that she has posted incorrect information, but people should be following *their* advice just because. The HHE of course makes no effort to shut any of this down or jump in to remind people that they should not take any of these people’s advice without first talking to an actual doctor/nutritionist. Thanks for providing this response to her irresponsible post!

  • Dennis

    Great article. I love making different fruity and vegetable shakes. It is good to our metabolism.

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  • Brandon

    this sounds a little crazy to me. I have been doing green smoothies for quite some time and feel great, no issues. I think people are overanalyzing all this stuff. Perhaps they are getting too much Vitamin K for their blood? It is important to do some bowel detoxes along with juicing and smoothies to get all the toxins out. Just get good organic fruits and veggies in your diet whether it be smoothie or recipes.

    • Peter

      Just because something works for you doesn’t mean it’d work for everyone. Every body is different – and I mean the physical body, not the person. We have to feed the body depending on what it has been through and what kind of physical state it’s in. People who don’t get good results from green smoothies should take it as alarm bells ringing and not just listen to others here but listen to what their own bodies are telling them.

  • Sophia


    Thanks for the post. I am curious to know if there are any other disadvantages of Green Smoothies? For example, I was recently told from a Dietician that if you already break down the fiber even before you put it in your mouth (by making a smoothie), the body no longer breaks it down the same way as a whole fruit or vegetable (she cited carrot as an example). The sugar left from the fruit goes straight to the blood stream.

    If this is the case, then is the body no longer getting the nutritional value of the fruit or vegetable in a form of a smoothie? Can you provide your opinion on this…?

  • Joanna

    Hi, what about people like Dr. Brian Clement from Hippocrates Health, who say green smoothies are bad for your health? Siting fetmentation, putrification, and skipping the salivary digestion process…and more. There are so many videos on YouTube of him speaking about this topic, promoting juicing and warning against green smoothies. I’d love to please get your take on this! Thanks so much.


    Your style is very unique compared to other folks I have read stuff from.

    Many thanks for posting when you’ve got the opportunity, Guess I will just book mark this web site.

  • Alicia Pfaff

    I am hoping I will be able to get to a place where I can tolerate raw veggies/smoothies better, but right now the reality for me is that if I ingest much at all, I get HORRIBLE cramps (to where I cannot function and that mimic my kidney stones)…and I have had at least one recurrence of kidney stones since I started introducing more salads and smoothies. I have cut back and gone back to cooked while I try to get my candida/sugar cravings under control (am currently on a detox, caprylic acid, pre- and probiotics). Are there any other suggestions you would share to get me to where I can tolerate better? Because, I have to tell you, that article sounded very true to me. Not all things work for everyone. I still eat very healthy, I just eat mostly steamed veggies and rotate my greens. I only eat lean meats (turkey or chicken) and in limited quantities.

  • nic

    You infer that green smoothies is a natural way to eat – I disagree, turning whole food into smoothies is just another form of “processing” not I agree it is much better than a big mac but it is still processed food and no longet natural.

    • GreenBoy

      You are correct it is a form of processed food but to even make this comment is ridiculous . The fact that you could even have a bad thing to say about people that are trying to eat healthy is honestly just weird. You need to go to The Big Mac supporters blog and hate on them all you want. To even try to even make people have this mind set that green smoothies are processed might be true but just something that is putting a bad swing on a good thing.

    • Patty

      That is ridiculous. So we shouldn’t ‘t have soup either I suppose?

    • Jay

      OMG.. now Ive heard everything.

      • Kelly mikals

        Yeah this comment is ridiculous. In theory if you take a fruit or vegetable and cut it into pieces, it is then “processed” Technically. Now cmon that is just crap i mean we are talking here about actual processed foods made in a factory with a bunch of ingredients that you have no idea what they are and very unhealthy for you and they are pretty much some science experiment made to taste like something. When you are making a green smoothie yes technically you are “processing” it making it a drink extracting the nutrients but you are getting what you put into it and you know what you put into it and its damn healthy. its not like your processing it by adding a million different thickeners and artificial ingredients and flavors. Cmon!!! Green smoothies are incredible for your health.

    • Peter

      Great comment, nic. And very good points. Greens are healthy but only in the right amounts which the body can safely process. Not every body can tolerate the unnaturally huge amounts which goes into a blender (think of the phrase “biting off more than you can chew” and its connotation). Not every body benefits from a raw diet, either. The people here making comments that they feel great and cannot understand why others don’t feel too great from the same foods they eat are dangerous. The body was designed to help us survive. If it’s giving off pain signals or any discomfort, it’s basically saying “WARNING”. So hopefully people reading all these comments will listen to what their own bodies are telling them instead of some of the people below responding to nic’s comment.

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  • Mike

    Interesting to read comments. I woke up this morning and decided to do a Google search about green smoothie negatives and landed here. I don’t know much about some of these issues and certainly don’t discount the problems people have, but here is what I do know and what seems to be working for me lest folk who don’t have kidney stone or other problems are on the fence about whether to indulge …

    I found Kimberly’s book at the library about a year ago and became interested enough to sign up for her newsletter. Sometimes I am slow to change but here’s my quick story – I am a 58 year overweight male with hypothyroidism. I’ve had my Vita-mix for about a month and a half now and consume different forms of 30 oz green smoothies 5-10 times a week using a variety of green leaf combinations of Kale, Spinach, Romaine and Dandelion Greens. I’ve lost about 10 pounds on the scale and gained muscle mass. The rosacea is clearing on my face and the skin on my stomach/chest is clear and smooth for the first time in 10 + years (my dr. looked at the “pimple” like red-marks on my stomach a few years ago and said “hmm”). My mobility has greatly increased and stretching routines are more effective. I’ve lost nagging aches and pains. Irritable bowel symptoms are gone. My energy level is up throughout the day and I no longer pay attention to the five hour energy ads because I’m not wanting to sleep in the early afternoon any longer. My brain is working at a higher clip. I’ve always worked out quite a bit and been a hiker but since green smoothies my workout stamina is way up. My usual overall daily calorie intake is down to 1600-2200 (5-6 days a week) and I don’t feel (very often) that I’m being deprived. I am very hopeful to continue seeing positive results and finally reaching goals I have been missing for years (decades).

    I occasionally have some bloating right after drinking my smoothie but usually goes away within a 1/2 hour or so. If I one day develop problems this information may be useful, but, for me, I’m feeling too good and seeing too many improvements to my life to change my current green smoothie regimen.

    Finally, I can’t really believe I am writing this because I seem like an ad for green smoothies yet a year ago when I first learned of green smoothies I said to myself yea, yea, yea – right. And, if, on the day of my death it is determined that green smoothies led to my demise – let the record state – so be it!

    • Laurie welch

      Wow!!! What a great account of your experience! I’m with ya! 55 yr old woman…sick of feeling tired /achy even though I am a very active person. Gave up alcohol 3 yrs ago to regain energy…figured if I could give that up I could quit white sugar/flour & all processed foods. Down 8 lbs in 3 weeks. Feel great. Contemplating vitamix. Was wondering if consuming more veggies/fruit in a drink than you might naturally eat was a bad thing…too much for the body in any way…but everyone seems to say they feel great. So maybe there really is a vitamix 7500 in my future. And if I die feeling this good I’m with you…SO BE IT! :)

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  • Paul

    Hey Kim just want to say that you look amazing :-) I assume it must be from all that smoothie then :-)

  • Lina

    We are not supposed to eat a lots and lots of greens. Drinking 2to 4 cups of green smoothies is consuming lots of green vegetables and fruits. Just eating salads and fruits is the best.


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  • John

    Yes, I’d also say ignore oxalates ..

    Unless you have a problem with leafy greens etc., there is no reason to avoid some of the healthiest food on earth ..

    The article against leafy greens was probably written by someone connected to the grain industry or something – we’ve got to use our own intuition a bit, because a lot of ‘information’ is nothing more than a gimmick to move us in a certain direction ..

    More Greens, Less Grains

    (Although I’d say grains could be better, but unfortunately they have been genetically-modified and hybridized so many times that you have to wonder if they can even qualify as food – not to mention that most grains aren’t even organic.)

  • melissa

    With regards to green smoothies, I am currently following a low oxalate diet and have green smoothies all the time. Some veggies are high in oxalates, others have minimal amounts. I just make sure I pick recipes with low oxalate foods such as cucumber, broccoli and most fruits. I love them and they are a great way to get your daily vitamins.

  • Suz

    I have been a green juicer for years. About 4 years ago, I started having pains in my bladder. No UTIs just pain. It seemed to be associated with my juicing. But, if you’ve green juiced / green smoothied for a while, you, like me, know why you can’t give it up.

    So, after much reading and trial and error with my diet, I have determined that I have become sensitive to oxalates. To spare you the details and get the to summary, I have added extra calcium supplements taken just as I start my juicing process. By the time I am finished juicing and the mess is cleaned up, the calcium is in my system and ready to bind with the oxalates. My bladder pain has stopped since I have started this routine. Will I develop stones b/c of this? I’m certainly not a medical professional, but, so far, so good. I know I am getting a king’s ransom of good things from the juicing.

  • Chloe

    People are very confused by oxalates and I was for a very long time. I have researched it for hours and hours a day and have gone through oxalate intolerance myself. The normal healthy gut is perfectly capable of handling oxalates because it contains plentiful amounts of oxalobacter formigenes, a beneficial bacteria that makes an enzyme that eats oxalate. It is due to an underlying health condition (usually antibiotics or excess sugary diet) that makes a whole in the gut called leaky gut syndrome. Those bacteria do not grow back, and if they do it is very slow because they are anaerobic so we can’t get them from fermented foods. But if we take a super spectrum of many high quality probiitics and heal the damaged gut and lining we can heal ourselves of leaky gut and once again digest oxalates fine. From what I have read and experienced :) the low oxalate diet is for healing and feeling good but we also need other steps to heal ourselves because the diet alone won’t do it.

  • Tiff

    I have read this whole article and all the comments. I found it necessary to “stick up for smoothies.” I personally started making/drinking fresh veggie/fruit smoothies a couple weeks ago. I have already lost 15 lbs and I feel AMAZING! I have no signs of IBS. As a matter of fact, my food digests tremendously better than when I was eating “processed food”/home cooked meals. I in no way agree that blending fruits and veggies makes them the same thing as “processed food.” Since I have been drinking smoothies, my skin has been baby smooth and clear, almost glowy. I am able to wake up in the morning at 7am and feeling quite refreshed might I add. I was not a morning person at all prior to my recent smoothie intake. I have noticed my mood is better as well as an intense energy boost, which I love! I am sure that the results are different for different people, but I thought I would share mine so that the people that read all the negative could see the positive as well. s/n… I do change my smoothies up usually every 3 days. I have used all kinds of different veggies, fruits, and herbs. I do always make sure there are more green leafy veggies than fruit though. No matter how I mix my smoothies, I have continued to have great results. I hope this helps if you are looking to make smoothies a part of your lifestyle.

  • Noelien

    It’s true! The part of how Good! green smoothies makes one feel. I’ve one been drinking them for 6 days, so I’m quite new to it. But I can relate to not being a morning person but since drinking the smoothies things (I !) have changed: Feeling fresh in the morning, energized for a far greater part of the day, positive mood, feeling physically lighter, no more craving unhealthy stuf!! and actually craving fruits and vegie snacks, I somehow took to the smoothies like a fish to water, I feel challenged to change my diet in a positive way and not a frustrating way like other diets make me feel! I had a beet, carrot and apple smoothie last night and started feeling nauseas and light headed afterward. Did some reading and found that the beet is the cause. So now I’m reading all the negative articles about raw food and green smoothies and it leaves me so confused. And sad. Because if I compare the Before and After Green Smoothie Me, there is so much positives to be found with the latter me. So, I think I’ve just made up my mind while typing this: I’m gonna keep on with the green smoothies. Will just do research on the effect that other veggies might have.