It’s Slimming


Good morning!

My special breakfast this morning was a Green Monster Parfait!


Green Monster Parfait


  • 2 cups spinach
  • 1 large banana (reserve 1/4 of banana)
  • 1/2 scoop Vega Choc-o-Lot powder
  • 1 tbsp chia seeds
  • 1 cup almond milk
  • 1/3 cup Power House Glonola 


Directions: In a blender, blend the spinach, 3/4 of the banana, Vega powder, almond milk, and chia seeds. In a large glass add a few tbsp of the glonola. Now add a large layer of the Green Monster followed by another scoop of Glonola. Finish with remaining GM (you might have some leftover) and top with the 1/4 of banana (sliced) and Glonola.

The Green Monster Parfait was ok, but not wonderful. I think I had high expectations for it and I’m not sure I liked eating it with a spoon.


After tasting my granola again this morning, I concluded that I overcooked it! Whoops. 

I guess it is possible to screw it up after all. ;)

I would suggest cooking it for no longer than 10 minutes on each side and not letting it get as dark as I cooked mine.


I also concluded that the clump factor is missing in this recipe.

Checkout my ‘old’ Glonola version…



Total clump factor!

However, the original Glonola had too much clumping and stuck together too much. Maybe I can find a happy medium with both recipes?! :)


I think I am going to make another recipe integrating the original recipe with this one. I will have to tweak it a bit more….you know me, I am picky with my recipes!


It’s Slimming



Are you ever out in public and you hear a conversation going on and you can’t believe what you are hearing? That was me the other night. I was at a department store looking for a gift for a girlfriend and I passed a group of 3 girls who were looking for back to school clothes. They couldn’t have been more than 9-10 years old.

Girl #1: ‘I need to get some new jeans. All of my jeans at home are fugly.’

Girl #2 & #3: ‘Yea same here.’

The girls were browsing through a couple racks of jeans and holding pairs up as they went along.

Girl #2: ‘I like these ones. I might try them on.’

Girl #1: ‘Those jeans are not slimming at all…they are too light and light colours make you look FAT.’ She scrunched up her face in disgust.

The girl quickly threw down the pair of jeans, as if they had some sort of contagious illness.

Girl #3: ‘I agree, you have to get the dark wash. You will look skinny in them. Dark colours are slimming’

‘Here, try these on. I have this pair and they make your butt look awesome.’

She handed Girl #2 a pair of dark wash jeans to try on.

Then I decided to stop being a creeper and I left the scene.

But, I was sad in my heart for these girls.

They couldn’t have been more than 10 years old and they were already concerned about having jeans that made them look skinny.

I remember being around 11 years old when my disordered eating started to develop. While I admit I didn’t know about slimming jeans (or even had a general fashion sense aside from neon and snap-on bracelets), the feelings were still very real.

It is important that we do not dismiss young girls when they talk about weight or slimming jeans or wanting to look thinner because when you are going through it it, you are like a sponge that absorbs every comment, every magazine ad, or every commercial on TV. Your surroundings are telling you to be ‘skinny’ and to wear ‘slimming’ clothes and so that is what you do.

Our weight-conscious culture seems to infect whatever it touches with messages that you aren’t good enough the way you are and that you need to change your body or wear slimming pants. These messages are hard enough to dismiss when you are an adult let alone an impressionable young girl who is fighting to fit in at school and to find out who she is.

I couldn’t help but wonder as I walked around aimlessly in that department store: What can we do for these girls?

I think two big ways that we can have an impact are 1) Educating about a positive body-image at home and setting a proper example for our kids, perhaps with a great tool like Operation Beautiful. and 2) Introducing special Body-image classes (for girls and boys) into the school curriculum. I don’t think this topic gets enough attention in the school curriculum even though the issue is pervasive and affects all aspects of a student’s life.

Have you ever overheard a similar conversation or perhaps were in a conversation when this was going on? What can we do for young girls who are developing a poor body image?

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{ 111 comments… read them below or add one }

Jessica @ How Sweet September 14, 2010

I couldn’t agree more! I was raised to have a positive body image and I feel so blessed that I was. I hope I can do the same for my kids one day. I think it all starts at home.


Jenn @ LiveWellFitNow September 14, 2010

I remember when I was teaching 3rd grade (8-9 year olds) overhearing countless conversations from the girls in class about feeling fat, eating too much, hating their outfits…wanting my outfit! The focus on outward appearance was overwhelming.

I thought and thought and thought about how to reach these girls and help them see how much more they have in life. And how beautiful they are and how unique they are. It saddened me to hear so much. As Jessica said, so much of this starts at home. We can’t control what children are exposed to at school but we can reinforce healthy body image at home!


Annie@stronghealthyfit September 14, 2010

I think the best thing we can do is to talk to anyone and everyone when the opportunity arises about body image in our culture. I might have even said something to those girls if I was overhearing that conversation, even though it might seem inappropriate. Young girls need to hear directly that they do not need to live up to anyone’s standards of beauty but their own, and that health is the most important thing.
I can’t stand how clothes are marketed as “slimming”- I won’t buy anything with such a label.


Michelle September 14, 2010

It saddens me as well when I hear anybody, young or old, feeling like they aren’t good enough. However, as a teacher, I’d rather not have “body-image” classes taught at school. Frankly, I hear too much about everyone with a special interest thinking it should be taught in schools. It’s just not the place. On the other hand, what schools (in my opinion) can be used for are simply to set good examples. Rather than explicity teaching these things, all adults can eat healthfully, not criticize their bodies or anybody elses in front of kids or teenagers (or at all!), exercise and generally be an example of a physically and emotionally healthy person.


Lily @ Lily's Health Pad September 14, 2010

Schools already do SO much. Some responsibilities must belong to parents, and I think this is one of them. But I agree with Michelle. The school setting a good example for students is invaluable.

As an early bloomer, I totally remember this phase of my life, and never, ever would I want to go back! My heart goes out to those girls. Unfortunately, I believe their feelings are the norm these days (and even in past days!).


Tinka September 15, 2010

I’m definitely feeling the same way about the schools. In an already overpacked curriculum should teachers really be responsible for catering to the distorted body images that students create? I think that parents should really consider the environments/experiences and media that their children are exposed to and inhibit or counter the body images that come as a result.

Definitely a valuable post in addressing children though. Thanks Angela.


Holly @ couchpotatoathlete September 14, 2010

Yes I’ve heard similar conversations like that! And to this day I catch myself saying stuff like that (not to a 10 year old, but to myself or a friend). I agree that projects like Oper Beautiful help girls get that positive body image, and that it should be “taught” at home. Although, my parents were always positive to me and gave m compliments when I was growing up, and yet I still have a poor self image. I’m not really sure where that finally broke into me — high school? Other girls? Peer pressure?

I think it is mostly in the media, and although that needs to change, I’m not sure it ever will! Designers will use size 0 models, magazines and movies will show thin “role models” for girls, etc. It truly makes me sad to hear this story today!


Kristina @ spabettie September 14, 2010

I don’t know how my mom did it, but I have always had confidence and positive images of myself… it most definitely starts at home. Something AT SCHOOL might be helpful – the conversation is already out there so any way to change it would be good.

Your parfait looks BEAUTIFUL ! YUM. Clump or not, that glonola sounds and looks tasty! :)

Have a FANTASTIC DAY, Angela !


Rachel @ Suburban Yogini September 14, 2010

I agree, but I have no idea how my mum did it either. I guess our mum’s are just awesome right?! :)


Amanda September 14, 2010

You’re very lucky your mom was so good about helping you have a positive body image. My mom was always nagging me about what I was eating. When I was in high school and wearing shorts one day she said to me that my shorts were riding up on my legs like they do on fat girls. This summer was the first time since that day that I wore shorts.


Kristina @ spabettie September 14, 2010



Freya (Brit Chick Runs) September 14, 2010

Oh wow, that’s so sad! I’ve never heard anything like that, but I hate seeing really young girls dressing waaaay above their age, smoking, drinking, boyfriends etc. I just want to scream at them to enjoy their childhood and being young whilethey can!! It’s soo saddd :(
Iblame the media personally. If celebs’ weights weren’t criticised as much and they wrren’t all so skinny, I bet the problem wouldn’t be as big.


Laura September 14, 2010

I too have had a constant battle with weight, food, looks, etc., so I’m always on high alert to make sure these issues are not passed along to younger girls. I was out shopping a while back and while I was perusing a rack I overhead a mother tell her young daughter (maybe 12 years old) while she was trying on clothes, “you’re getting fat, you need to watch that.” First off oh my word, who says that to anybody let alone a child, and secondly there was nothing absolutely nothing in the way of an extra pound on this child. If I had not been so mortified and caught off guard I would have said something — months later I am still reeling in shock and of course now that I am not right in the moment, I have an entire speech ready for this woman.


Ange @ Health & Swellbeing September 14, 2010

Wow – that is heartbreaking to hear. And to think there are even more pressures on girls at a young age now than when we were they’re age….I was reading an article how the consumption of dairy has let to girls getting their periods as early as 8 years old now.
It’s terrifying to think of my little girl having to face issues like this. I feel it is so important for mothers to be a healthy example to their daughters especially now that they are beginning to judge themselves at such an early age.


Rachel @ Suburban Yogini September 14, 2010

And this is why I’m glad I had to wear a uniform to school until I was 16 :)


Samantha Angela @ Bikini Birthday September 14, 2010

I loved my uniform. Being able to wake up late because you don’t have to fret about what to wear to school was so liberating.
…I must admit that I would stress out about dress down days.


Christine September 14, 2010

A uniform was both a blessing and a curse for me. It certainly helped me get to high school on time (dress down days–not so much)! And it did help me avoid body confidence issues–but all it seemed to do was DELAY them.

I got to college and A) had very little by the way of “casual” clothing, B) had no idea how to dress and C) grew increasingly aware of flaws as I tried to fix points A and B. To make matters worse, I was (and still am) in a male dominated field, and had very few women to turn to.


Valerie @ City|Life|Eats September 14, 2010

I am so glad you wrote about how young girls internalize the messages of skinny is good around them – I remember I was 7 years old when I started internalizing those messages, and by age 8 felt that eating less was better. And it wasn’t a feeling as much as a sense of absolute knowledge – like “I must eat less” – how sad is that? I just got sad typing it. You are right that education is the best – as wonderful as my mom is, she was always upset about her weight, as was my aunt, and my father’s mother – the only woman in my growing-up years who was not upset was my mother’s mother, but she was on the thin end – so I thought she was not upset because she was thin, but in hindsight I think she was very happy and just did not think about weight.


Erin September 14, 2010

Stories like this break my heart. Unfortunately, they are so common. My sister is a third grade teacher. However, she interned in a Kindergarten classroom when she was still in college. One day, she noticed one of the 5 year old girls pacing around the classroom repeatedly. My sister asked the girl what she was doing, and the little girl replied, “I ate an Oreo cookie for snack. Now I have to burn off the calories.” It literally made me cry. My stepdaughter is 6 years old and already talks about “skinny” and “fat”. When she stays with us, I really try to let her know that it is OK to eat sweets in moderation, and I make sure never to use “fat talk” around her. Children are so impressionable, and we have a real opportunity to teach them at a young age that they are special because of their talents and personality.


Christina September 14, 2010

My heart just broke reading this :/ 5 years old. I’m at a loss for words.


Anna @ Newlywed, Newly Veg September 14, 2010

That makes me sad :-( I used to take a yoga class with a lot of college-age girls, and it would make me so sad to hear the way they would talk about their disordered eating (“Oh my gosh, I starved myself all day so that I can go get ice cream after this class”) and body image issues– it reminded me of how unhappy I was in my own skin during those four years (and before and after, too!).

It’s crazy how early those issues can start– I remember feeling distinctly unhappy about my body from about the age of 9-10 onwards.


JenATX September 14, 2010

i think young people should be learning about this in school. if they don’t learn early, they are just going to absorb everything from the media & develop this frame of mind throughout their lives until they learn otherwise. I didn’t learn anything about body image until I was in college. This is probably when I needed to learn it, but obviously some girls should hear these things much earlier.


Amanda September 14, 2010

I completely agree with you about needing to educate young girls about body image…girls on the run is a really great organization I’ve started supporting that is working towards just that.

I was in the airport the other week and overheard a families conversation that also made me sad. The father had just gotten an ice cream cone and was encouraging his daughter (probably in her late teens and far far from being overweight) to get one. She decided to get one but after getting it and having her mom make some discouraging comments about how unhealthy it was proclaimed she was going to eat it but start a diet when they got back from the trip. It made me sad that this young girl could not enjoy a simple ice cream cone without feeling shamed by her mother or feeling like she needed to go on a diet.


Katie September 14, 2010

I’ve seen some of my young cousins on FB posting messages like “why am I such a fattie?” and all of their friends chiming in to say things like “you’re ridiculous, I’M the fat one” or “that’s why I skipped everything but dinner today.” It was so sad and I wanted to say something but also felt I might sound like a presumptuous adult who “doesn’t understand.” I ended up messaging my cousin the Operation Beautiful site which she loved and I hope shared and took to heart. I don’t know what the best thing to do would be, as friends my age talk the same way sometimes!


Robin September 14, 2010

Even though this may sound harsh, I don’t think school is the place to teach girls and boys life lessons; that’s their parent’s job. As an 18 year old who is just over a year out of the US public school system, I think in this age there exists a fine balance between teaching positive body imagine and telling kids that they are acceptable no matter their size. The much bigger problem we face isn’t kids wanting to be skinny, but kids who are eating themselves to death.


shannon (the daily balance) September 14, 2010

my heart hurts when I overhear conversations like this… such a huge problem and I completely agree with your mindset. Luckily there are some great organizations out there that are addressing the problem head-on.


Paige @ Running Around Normal September 14, 2010

Well the parfait certainly LOOKS cool! Like a piece of art almost, haha!
I hate when I hear conversations like that. My little cousin nearly broke my heart when she told me she was fat. She’s six :(


Mo@MommyRD September 14, 2010

I couldn’t agree more. I think it really needs to start at home. I know my mom used to talk about looking fat and diets when I was a young girl. Parents, friends, and family need to stop the fat talk and set a good example of healthy body image around children. I hope to never mention weight or “skinny” vs “fat”, but instead show healthy eating and being active for fun and to feel our best.


Morgan @ Healthy Happy Place September 14, 2010

Ugh, that conversation makes me sad.


Michelle @ Turning Over a New Leaf September 14, 2010

I was in the shower at the YMCA one day when I overheard other girls talking about how to properly make themselves throw up. It was heartbreaking. :(


Amanda September 14, 2010

It is so sad to hear young girls call themselves fat. It almost makes me scared. Should I ever have a daughter, would I be able to protect her from our cruel culture??


Becca September 14, 2010

I think about that ALL THE TIME. It makes me so scared!


Katie September 14, 2010

I was at the YMCA in the women’s locker room when a mother was weighing her probably 5-6 year old daughter on the scales. When she told her daughter her weight, the daughter asked “Mommy, am I fat?” She was obviously a normal looking young girl and it hurt my heart that such a young girl would automatically associate those words with weighing herself.


Christina September 14, 2010

I wonder why the mother was weighing her 5-6 year old daughter in the first place?

How heartbreaking :/


Maria @ Oh Healthy Day September 14, 2010

This topic is exactly what I wrote my thesis on (I’m a wannabe school counselor – just need a position to open up) and I developed a counseling program to teach students how to fight the negative criticism – from themselves and others. Within my research, I found that no schools within the U.S. had yet to implement similar programs. What’s even more heartbreaking is that yes, it does start at home, but I hear moms and dads make the same remarks about themselves.


Shelly September 14, 2010

When I was waiting in line for the bus to my first race ever, I was standing behind two women who looked like they were in their mid to late 30’s. They both were very pretty and had nice figures, but were definitely talking about how they needed to run more to make up for stuff they’d recently eaten. A girl walked by who was *very* emaciated. (I know some people are naturally very very thin and I’m not judging the thin girl in anyway. However, she seemed significantly underweight for her height in a way that I would not assume was healthy.) The ladies both said in an admiring tone “Wow. That’s what a *real* runner looks like.” I thought it was so sad. The runners who win local races are very lean, but they also tend to have really good muscle tone, which the thin girl didn’t. I felt really bad that those women were impressed by the idea of being skin and bones.
It only made me run faster though, I thought “I’ll show you what a real runner looks like!”


Camille September 14, 2010

One of my biggest goals when I have children is to teach them to be comfortable with their bodies. I had a lot of scrutiny from my Mom when I was growing up which is one of the things that fueled my eating disorder. Even if I have to lie a little because I’m not feeling too pretty one day, I want to teach my children that I am beautiful no matter how many lumps, bumps, or curves I have and hopefully they will follow suite!


Karen September 14, 2010

When I make granola, I bake it low — at 300 degrees F for about 30-40 minutes. Although, mine lacks a clump factor too! Doesn’t it make the house smell more fabulous than any candle could?!

I have 2 boys, and I know body image is becoming an issue among the male population too, I’m so glad I don’t have to fight this war with a daughter! It’s so sad. Why aren’t 10 yr olds out playing jail break or roller skating? A kid that age (either sex) shouldn’t be so concerned about fashion and appearance. :(


Samantha @ Health, Happiness & Skinny Jeans September 14, 2010

This is a topic I could go on and on about. Its very sad to see that young girls are judging themselves so negatively and basing self worth on how they look in a pair of jeans. I think parts of our society sends an unfortunate message that is heard loud and clear from a young age. Celebrity culture, Barbie, movies, they all have an impact on impressionable youth. But I think that this idea is perpetuated closer to home for some girls too. Its hard not to think “fat” thoughts when your mom, aunt, sister stands in front of a mirror and dissects her appearance or is constantly on one diet or another. Until we can convince women to love themselves its going to be really hard to manage that idea with young girls.


Krystina September 14, 2010

The choco carob looks great!

I think it’s so sad when young girls suffer from poor body image. I think it’s based on environmental, cultural and familial factors, mostly, but ultimately I agree with Jessica in that a healthy lifestyle and personal view does start at home.


Gillian September 14, 2010

I had two instances that upset me recently, especially since they were with health focused people. One was with a nutritionist. I had mentioned my cleanse- which I did for my health and skin, not weight loss- and she asked excitedly “Ooh did you lose any weight?” I replied “I don’t weigh myself, I don’t know.” And she seemed shock. Another was at the vegetarian food fair with one of the vendors. I mentioned how I eat mostly vegan and that it worries my mother because she has it in her head that I’ll lose too much weight eating this way (even though it’s kept me at a very healthy weight). She said “Is it even possible to lose too much weight?” I was so surprised I half smiled and left the conversation. I wasn’t ready to go into the fact that YES, it is very possible, it is something I’ve experienced and never want to focus on again.


Shanna, like Banana September 14, 2010

Yep, heard this before…very sad.

However I distinctly remember pounding on my hips willing them to be narrower when I was about 10. Sigh…starts so early!


Priscilla September 14, 2010

The sad thing is, you know the place these girls most likely picked up this kind of talk: the mothers. I think as women we have to work harder at listening to what we say more consciously. Young girls identify so closely with their mothers, and if the mothers believe they are inadequate in some way and voice that feeling, the daughters will also believe they are inadequate. It takes a lot of work to break the cycle.

On another note, I heard a similar conversation standing in line for the restroom of a nightclub in Vegas. One girl, who was as cute as a button, was looking at the girl across from her and finally said, “You are so pretty. How do you do it? I wish I was as pretty as you.” And the other girl–no joke–made a face and said something bad about herself. I couldn’t take it, so I said “You are both pretty. You should know that.” The line got quiet, and everyone looked at me like I was a nut. Another woman about my age (early 40s) turned to me and said, “I stay out of those things.” But I couldn’t help myself. I am so tired of hearing women put down themselves and others, and it just makes me sad so many respond this way to any sort of kindness or compliments.


Lauren September 14, 2010

Good for you!! Don’t listen to that women- you did the right thing! We can’t sit back and complain about this, if we don’t stand up and say something!


Ashley September 14, 2010

Wow that is SO young. It makes me think of my cousin, Jenna, who is is 7th grade right now. I would never want her to feel anything less than perfect just the way she is. I agree about adding REAL LIFE classes to school curriculum, like um, how to parent children, etc. — I just bought carob chips for the first time and wow they are different. I think I like them? hehe


Alicia @culinarybliss September 14, 2010

I think it’s important to recognize that this stuff doesn’t come from school or tv, it usually comes from home.
I have a friend who gained weight after a hard pregnancy and when I try to take pictures of her and her daughter she says “don’t take my picture, I look awful!” At some point, her daughter is going to notice this is wonder why, and realize that there’s a connection between weight and shame.
We have to think about children when we talk about our bodies, and we shouldn’t say things we wouldn’t want them to repeat.


Lesley September 14, 2010

This is a topic that is starting to concern me. I have two girls, age 5 and 3, and already they are starting to internalize this idea of beauty, and I don’t know how to counter it. For example, their Nana (my mom) loves to send them fancy crinolined dresses. Whenever they wear them out, complete strangers will ooh and aah and tell them how beautiful they are. When they wear their regular pants and t-shirts (or even the occasional skirt), no one says much. So, they’ve logically concluded that they’re only beautiful if they wear fancy dresses. Combine that with the flourishing “princess” culture being marketed to young girls, and it’s hard for us as parents to overcome those messages and convince them that beauty is not about what you wear and how you look, but about who you are.

Sigh… I just hope that at some level what we tell them and how we live is sinking in, even if it’s not apparent right now.


schmei September 14, 2010

Have I ever overheard such a conversation? Hoo boy, yes. Every time I’m with my mother/aunt/grandmother (yes, my 86-year-old grandmother still talks about how she’s “too fat”. Which, by the way, is not true). We were _not_ raised with positive body image. My mom misses no opportunity to talk about how she’s “fat”… and then she reaches for the prepackaged fake food, drives to places when she could walk, and wonders why she has trouble with her weight.

Now that I have a baby niece, I’m working hard to be a positive influence for her. I want her to grow up loving who she is and enjoying all the things her body is capable of. My sister is doing the same thing: focusing on fitness and eating real food. Here’s hoping this baby girl isn’t having that same conversation 9 years from now…


Heather (Heather's Dish) September 14, 2010

that’s so sad…and i totally remember having those conversations when i was young too! i honestly think the best thing is to maybe say that you have those jeans and they look great…and i think that (not to be totally creepy) coming from a beautiful, thin, and HEALTHY woman like you it would mean a lot. even if you don’t have those jeans, letting the girls know they look great in anything is something they’ll remember forever!


Michelle @ Give Me the Almond Butter September 14, 2010

What a heartbreaking conversation. When I was in my high school, I was in the bathroom when a girl came out of the stall and told her friend that was standing at the sinks near me:
Girl 1: “I totally just threw up!”
Girl 2: “Good for you! I threw up this morning as well!!”

I was shocked that anyone would be encouraging such awful behavior even though we take numerous classes telling us all the horrible consequences of eating disorders :(


Katie @ Health for the Whole Self September 14, 2010

I think your suggestion to incorporate some kind body-image education into the school curriculum is an interesting one. Perhaps it would be worthwhile to think even more broadly – a self-acceptance curriculum, if you will. Because while body image is of course an issue, young girls and boys are told that they are not good enough in many ways that go beyond their body shape or size. Shy kids are told they need to speak up, or gregarious girls are told they’re too loud, etc. I would love to see the entire dialogue be altered – from “here’s what’s wrong with you and how you should fix it” to “here are your unique strengths and how they can be used to do good things in this world.”


christina September 14, 2010

from “here’s what’s wrong with you and how you should fix it” to “here are your unique strengths and how they can be used to do good things in this world.”

YES. If there was a ‘like’ button I’d ‘like’ this a bunch of times :)


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