Family Recipes I: The Rob Thornton Smoothie Special

Throughout April I have the honor of introducing you to a family each week from my practice who are taking steps forward, no matter what size, to change what is on their plate. This week you met the Thornton Family on my post about changing breakfast.

It’s not an easy task to convince an athletic director and coach to trade in his daily eggs, spinach, and turkey bacon breakfasts for fruit but Rob Thornton was willing to give it a try. What’s really interesting, yet not unusual, about Rob’s story is that the thought of sweet fruit in the morning was actually nauseating. This is actual quite normal with individuals who maintain a very acidic pH. Alkalizing foods are not appealing but acid producing ones sure are! So the task at hand for those folks is to shift the pH gradually, easing into more alkaline foods by increasing the amount of raw fruit bit by bit.

Moving Rob into a pure fruit smoothie has been a slow process because we needed to increase his tolerance. I had him start with low glycemic fruits and more greens and build up the amount of fruit over time. After three months he is not only drinking his smoothies daily but he is making them for his family at 5:30 AM each weekday morning!

Getting Rob to completely forgo his protein heavy breakfast was no easy task and you will see by his recipe he is still adding in a bit of peanut butter and almond milk. As I will tell all of my clients- this is about making steps forward and we all start at different place. The changes Rob has implemented these past three months are huge and we will keep moving ahead. As you may have read in my last post, by just changing his breakfast Rob has lost over 25lbs. While I will advocate for further dietary change we are going to move at a pace that is sustainable for the Thorntons.

The Rob Thornton Smoothie

Frozen: Blueberries and Strawberries
Fresh: Bananas
Almond milk
1 tablespoon of fresh ground peanut butter or 1/2 avocado


While daughter Lily will drink hers down right away in her Minnie Mouse cup, Rob and wife Suzanne often drink theirs on the way to work. They will often take along the other half of the avocado or a banana for a quick snack once at school.

So what next steps might Rob do to take his smoothie to the next level? Knowing the Thornton’s schedule I would suggest they make it through the end of the school year with exactly what they are doing. Then when there is a bit less pressure on their schedules consider some upgrades.

With the almond milk and peanut butter, Rob is adding protein which tends to slow the speed of digestion and reduce the lymphatic action yet healthy fats and increased calories would be a good thing.

Options to consider:
1. More avocado
2. Coconut Butter
3. Raw Coconut
4. Coconut water
5. Hemp Seeds
6. Raw Cocao Nibs or Powder
7. Dates
8. Raw Greens- spinach or kale would be good (frozen is ok)


Big congratulations to the Thornton family for taking some very important steps forward and together in order to improve their health. What is so exciting and encouraging to me is that there are so many of you out there doing the same thing! Looking forward to next week when we take a look at lunch and get some inside tips from a family who has been eating plant based for some time now.