This is the story of Nina Marie
Nina was born three weeks early and weighed 4 pounds, 8 ounces. While she was in the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit, Nina’s father, a nurse, glanced at an X-ray and noticed blackness where her right lung should have been. When he mentioned it, he said, a nurse practitioner shooed him out of the room and told him to join his wife. Later on, it was confirmed: she had only one lung. Her heart, located on the left side in humans, was pushed to the right, and her esophagus was not connected to her stomach. Nina was also born with esophageal atresia long gap.
After Nina was born, circumstances for the Marino family changed. With the support of Nina’s father, Lesley devoted her time to Nina’s care, becoming a self-taught advocate for Nina and other children with chronic health issues.
Nina had to endure countless surgeries and procedures and fight other health related problems like esophagitis, asthma, reflux, and scoliosis. The first eight months of Nina’s life were extremely hard. Five days after her birth, surgeons at All Children’s Hospital inserted an inch-round gastrostomy tube, also called a G-Tube, near her naval. It remains to this day, a lifeline that carries a daily, Army-green mixture of vegetables, vitamins, proteins, fruits and other nutrients to her stomach.
When Nina was about three months old, doctors reconnected her esophagus. Because she was born with a long gap, the connection was difficult to make and Nina was not able to eat only by mouth. She is now fifteen years old and still needs G-tube feeds.
As a loving mother and an advocate for utilizing natural resources, Lesley focused on the nutrients provided by Mother Nature as opposed to processed foods. Lesley’s extensive knowledge and background in natural medicine aided her in the quest for Nina’s healthy nutritional intake, thus Lesley unknowingly created the concept of The Blenderized Diet, to help her daughter achieve a well-balanced diet.
At 15 months Nina began her nutritional intake via The Blenderized Diet. It is the belief of many that this effort is a key to Nina’s success of living a healthy, happy lifestyle. Lesley’s work in this area has been commended by various physicians, nutritional therapists and other professionals nationwide.
The Blenderized Diet is for persons who receive food/formula via a G-tube, J-tube, or NG-tube. It has been proven to support a healthy lifestyle, through the benefits of using food products provided to us from Mother Nature. Her original website is: www.BlenderizedDiet.com
You will find recipes, necessary equipment, workshops and support to make your own blends using whole foods. Remember to always check with your GI or RD before making any changes to nutritional intake. What you chose to blenderize is an individual decision.
This is a example of a recipe Nina’s G-tube feeds:
3 Pounds of Raw Beets
1 Pound of Kale
6 Ounces of Parsley
6 Ounces Kelp
5 Tablespoons of Flaxseed Oil
5 Tablespoons Raw Flaxseed
2 Heaping Scoops of Protein Powder
*With each new batch of food vegetables/fruits are substituted for variation and vitamin mineral benefits.
For more information about the Blenderized Diet, please contact Lesley at [email protected]