Former model and Louisville native Catherine McCord knew something had to change when her 8-year-old son could get no relief from daily stomach aches, headaches and nausea. Doctors and specialists had no explanation or diagnosis. Determined to help her son, who already followed a healthy diet as a vegetarian by choice, she dug deeply into nutrition research. What she discovered led to the birth of a movement.
A graduate of the Institute of Culinary Education and founder of family food company Weelicious, McCord says she was already “someone who spends most of her waking moments thinking about the simplest and most enjoyable ways to get good nutrition into kids.” When the therapeutic uses of smoothies popped up in her research, McCord knew she had hit upon a fun way to see if dietary changes, especially to her son’s carb-heavy breakfasts, would relieve his discomfort.
Amazingly, within a mere month, every symptom her son had been experiencing daily had disappeared.
Excited about her discovery, McCord began to post daily on social media about her kids’ love of her smoothie creations. The response was overwhelming. Followers, inspired by her success, were actively sharing their own stories and questions, and the Smoothie Project was born. “The potential health benefits of smoothies were more far-reaching than I had ever imagined, impacting people from a wide range of age groups and with diverse health struggles,” McCord says.
Now five years into the project, McCord’s three children still enjoy a smoothie every day. She has compiled their numerous creations along with detailed nutritional advice into what she calls her smoothie bible. Smoothie Project: The 28-Day Plan to Feel Happy and Healthy No Matter Your Age, (Abrams, $24.99), is chock-full of frozen concoctions and luscious photos organized by flavor profile and purpose.
In addition, McCord educates readers on the best tools, how to prep and store smoothies both before and after blending, and even how to organize a freezer. She compares the cost of store-bought smoothies with homemade and describes why smoothies are more beneficial than juicing.
McCord, who now lives in Los Angeles, has appeared on numerous TV shows including Today, Good Morning America, and Guy’s Grocery Games. View her how-to videos, recipes and more at Weelicious.com.
Photo: Colin Price