Viva Fresh Clean Eating Challengers Making Huge Strides in Achieving Results
MISSION, TX - Last November, the Clean Eating Challenge was launched in anticipation of the 2020 Viva Fresh Produce Expo. Four participants committed to eating clean and fresh produce along with the aid of TV personality and physician, Dr. Ian Smith. So far, the results have been amazingly good.
“I’m absolutely amazed by each participant’s commitment and dedication to this program,” stated Dr. Smith, who has been leading and coaching the group. “As an advocate for clean eating with more plant-based foods, it’s exciting and personally satisfying to be able to work with these industry veterans who provide consumers across the country with healthy fruits and vegetables that are so badly needed to keep our country healthy. Now, these four produce professionals are getting a firsthand look at just how powerful fresh food can be!”
According to the press release, all participants have lost a significant amount of weight—averaging more than 24 pounds per person.
“This has been a life-changing journey for me,"Produce industry veteran and Director of Sales for Grow Farms Texas, Tommy Wilkins noted. "Becoming a grandfather has inspired me to take my health and wellness seriously. I can’t tell you how much my energy level has changed and how well I’ve been feeling. The food has been satisfying, and I’ve lost 24 pounds to date. My lipid panel has improved to the point of I was able to cut my cholesterol medication in half. I’m changing 59 years of bad habits, and I’ve never felt better.”
Each participant regularly posts videos showcasing their progress online at the Viva Fresh website. Participating sponsors include SunFed, Grow Farms Texas, Coast Tropical, Rio Fresh, and J&D Produce.
“I was recently diagnosed with diabetes, so I wanted a restart to be able to make healthier choices,” remarked Michelle Cortez, Empacadora GAB – Mr. Lucky. “Eating lots of raw fruits and vegetables has been really helping to keep my sugar levels stable. I haven’t had a sugar spike since I started the program, which is amazing. Now, I’m more than halfway to reaching my goal of losing 40 pounds.”
In addition to his personalized coaching, Dr. Smith has provided his books to each of the participants to use as a reference. Produce industry members interested in following the program, can use these books as a reference: Clean & Lean, The Clean 20, and Blast the Sugar Out. The participants each also received an advanced copy of Dr. Smith’s latest book Mind Over Weight which is due to be published in April 2020.
“I’ve battled weight my whole life, so it’s time for me to get in control of how to fully live my life,” said Ed Bertaud, Director, Retail Sales-IFCO RPC North America. “I’m feeling better, having a lot more energy especially at the end of the day, and my mind is clearer. And I don’t feel like I’m starving. Traveling for work has its challenges, but I’m happy to report that I’ve lost 25 pounds to date and am on my way to reaching my goals.”
Jed Murray from Tenaza Organics also follows suit, revealing that he has lost 24 pounds as well.
“I joined the challenge because I felt out of step and a lot older than my 45 years. Now, I’m walking eight to ten miles a day and am feeling healthy, strong, and lighter. I’m eating healthier, but I don’t feel like I’m sacrificing flavor with the use of fresh herbs, spices, and fresh salsa,” commented Murray. “My balance is better, I’m down 24 pounds, and am feeling great.”
Dr. Ian Smith will be the keynote speaker for the Viva Fresh Keynote Luncheon this year. The participants will join him onstage where the final results and the details of the participants’ experiences will be unveiled.
The Viva Fresh Expo is focused on connecting the rapidly growing Tex-Mex corridor to retail and foodservice buyers, which is why the majority of exhibitors are growers/shippers from Texas and Mexico. Buyer participation has more than doubled since Viva Fresh began five years ago. The Expo will run on April 30 through May 2 in San Antonio, Texas.
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