How a Green Smoothie Almost Killed My Brother


How a Green Smoothie Almost Killed My Brother (As told by my brother with side bars by moi, Johanna.)

5 minutes after drinking the top 1 inch off my pint glass of Johanna's shake, I immediately knew something was up.  Tough to describe the exact feeling, but the scratchy throat is usually my first sign to food allergies.  Not that I have many, (read none - only this possible apple skin allergy which has gone unconfirmed. Until now.)

After my sister's boyfriend placed the smoothie down on my office desk, (I was in the middle of a refi on my home), I started drinking just a little bit. It was a thick green smoothie, hard to chug so I was taking it slowly.

Soon after my first sip, I called down to my sister below in the kitchen asking "Jo, whats in this?" (I totally thought he was asking to make fun of me "is this one of your hippie shakes full of seeds and berries?" As I was in the middle of something, I kinda ignored him.)

Within minutes, I felt horrible.  Stomach churning, throat scratching, eyes watering, tingle on my tongue.  I stood up, still unsure what to do, but started strolling towards the bathroom.  I've never been great at reading my body's billboard sized signs informing me about my body but I was sea sick frequently on my latest merchant marine deployment so I recognized the sign that I needed to be in the bathroom.

I called out to my sister again, asking her what was in the smoothie. No laughing involved, just desperately trying to ask if there was apple in it.

(So now, as my brother calls out to me a second time - in between weird coughing noises, I head upstairs and list off the ingredients. "Spinach, banana, apple.....aaaarrrrgggghhh! APPLE. OH MY GOD. I'm SO SORRY"!

Now I'm running up the stairs and turning the corner to meet my brother in the bathroom. Obviously I feel awful, completely forgetting about his apple skin issues. He's been out to sea for months and it totally escaped my mind. Believe me, I won't forget this ever again!)

As the itching got worse, it felt like the apple skin, although microscopic, was stuck in the back of my throat. I started coughing hard to clear my stomach and throat, eyes watering like Niagara.  Needless to say, I emptied my stomach of the smoothie (+ my breakfast bagel sandwich.)

Ten minutes later, it was over. I am fine. Back to normal, only just slightly traumatized by my sister giving me something that I have always had a hunch I was allergic too. I'll just add it to the list of things for me to tease her about...."Remember that time when you tried to kill me with a green smoothie...?"

(So the moral of the story is listen to what your body is telling you. Granted in this case, the signs were really obvious, but it's not like that all the time. Maybe you aren't a picky eater as everyone thinks. Maybe you just know that you don't feel well after eating something. For my brother, it's apple skin. Track what you eat and how you feel. Trust your body. Trust your instincts.)