Thursday, September 23, 2010

What Breakfast?

Many people skip breakfast entirely, thinking that if they are not really that hungry in the morning, they might as well save up the calorie allotment for the remainder of the day, because you never know what might come up, right?  Others tend to treat breakfast as an annoying little occurrence that needs to be lightly pacified, so they gulp down a muffin, some kind of bar, or another type of foil-wrapped breakfast food substance and get on with their day.

What both of these have in common is that they are simply the spring-boards, or starting lines for a day of energy high's and low's that set the stage for eating in response to the cravings and depleted energy levels you are setting yourself up to have.
     "I always get hungry around 10:30.  Breakfast just doesn't hold me," people state, rationalizing the mid-morning trip to the coffee shop, vending machine or break room goodie tray.
By lunchtime, the mid-morning snack has worn off, creating a sharp drop in insulin levels, making us feel the need for something to get us back up-and-at-em quickly, so the foods we tend to gravitate towards are those that are quickly absorbed, fast energy, low-nutrient foods consisting of simple carbs, sugars, fat and sodium.

And so the cycle continues throughout the rest of the day.

We think we are doing ourselves a favor at the beginning of the day by passing up the calories, but calories are not THE key to health, happiness and overall well-being that many erroneously believe them to be.  Some of THE major keys to health, happiness and overall well-being are nutrients - nutrients that come from REAL, whole foods.

Try this:  set your alarm for 30 minutes earlier every day for a week.  Rather than depending on those 30 minutes of sleep as your "salvation", experiment by actually eating REAL food for breakfast - REAL food like REAL eggs; REAL apples, bananas and berries;  REAL whole grains rather than boxed cereal impostors.  You just might be surprised by how great you feel the rest of the day!

For this REAL food breakfast, I made my green smoothie (but bulked it up with 2 Tablespoons of flaxseed meal and 1 heaping Tablespoon of nutritional yeast [for vitamin B-12], and some extra spinach, making it a 2-serving batch), accompanied by a piece of cinnamon-raisin sprouted bread (I like Ezekiel Bread) topped with a light coat of almond butter (less inflaming than peanut butter), and some apple and banana slices and a carrot.  While this sounds like a lot of food, I don't feel bloated after eating this type of meal, just satisfied.  It keeps hunger at bay for at least 4-5 hours!

Other combinations to try include eggs with spinach, tomato and quinoa or sprouted bread, some carrots and an apple; steel-cut oats topped with an entire apple, some flaxseed meal and walnuts with a carrot or green smoothie on the side.  Experiment!

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