Breakfast is the way we start our day but ultimately it sets up how we feel and the food decisions we make for the rest of it! So let's discuss breakfast….and some healthier breakfast ideas.
Studies show that our blood sugar levels will be more stable throughout the day if we eat a good breakfast. Having a big meal at the end of the day, does the opposite, it really spikes your blood sugars, and even affects you the next day. So having ‘breakfast like a king, lunch like a prince and dinner like a peasant’ is still the best thing for long term good health.
Eating like this is also much better for weight loss, as calories eaten at night tend to ‘stick’, while calories eaten in the morning get burned up. It’s all to do with our circadian cycles, meaning that our bodies do certain things better at certain times throughout the day.
Studies also show that plant based, whole food diets bring down our risks of diabetes, heart disease, cancer etc. So if we want to increase our ‘health span’, and be able to enjoy more of our longer ‘life span’, it certainly pays off to have a look at our breakfast habits.
Many of us are habitually stuck in a piece of toast, some wheatbix, or bowl of cereal from a box.
Those that want to change, often don’t know what to change to. It seems pretty daunting to suddenly have to start making chia puddings, or Açai bowls, and it often ends up in the ‘too hard basket’.
First of all, you don’t have to change everything at once, and go from your wheatbix with milk to a gluten free, sugar free, dairy free, whole food, and organic breakfast. You are much more likely to succeed if you start changing one ingredient at the time, try to involve the whole family, and set a time in the week to do your experimenting.
Maybe make Sunday morning a ‘healthier pancakes production’. Explore different flours in your pancakes, first replace a quarter of wheat flour with buckwheat flour, or coconut flour, or almond flour. Every Sunday you can use a little less wheat flour and a bit more of your preferred flour. Observe how your batter might need some more liquid, or baking powder. You can also buy premade packs of buckwheat pancakes from Wrays Organic or other health food shops that make this process easier.
Once you are happy with your new pancakes, think of healthier toppings. And while you are baking pancakes, why not bake extra’s, so you can use them in lunch boxes. After slow transitioning, I have settled on ¾ buckwheat flour and ¼ of coconut flour, lots of baking powder, 1 egg, and whatever milk I have open in the fridge, either soy, almond, or coconut. We top them with fresh summer fruits and coconut yogurt, mouth watering! The extra pancakes come with me for lunches on the road, lathered with nut paste. This winter I want to start exploring with some savoury toppings, like sautéed onions, tomatoes, eggplant and spinach.
Smoothies can also make an excellent start to the day, can be packed with high quality nutrients, and can be made in advance for a few days, so all you have to do in the morning is open up the fridge and grab your smoothie. Again, experiment with the ingredients.
Try different plant based milks, fruits, plant based protein powders, maca powder, chia seeds etc. If you add a fair bit of chia seeds, your smoothie will turn into a pudding. Delicious, but hard to drink. The good old porridge can also become a nutrient dense start of the day. If you make a big batch ahead, it will last you a few days, again making the morning rush less rushed while providing you with a wholesome breakfast to last you till lunch time.
Our porridge goes a bit like this. I soak and cook a batch of quinoa, or millet, or buckwheat groats. I soak a mix of nuts, seeds, sultanas (a good trail mix works really well), chia seeds and coconut flakes. (Use lots of water, as much as it wants to soak up.) I mix the two together and add as much almond/coconut milk as it will soak up. Then I add frozen mixed berries, linseed meal and Kfibre. A touch of vanilla or cinnamon, a pinch of salt, and topped with fresh fruit and coconut yoghurt for a gourmet porridge.
Another recipe that is gluten free, dairy free, sugar free and a power packed start to the day if you are not vegan is good old fashioned eggs, avocado, tomato, spinach and mushroom. This could be an omlette, or simply cooked in the pan. Add on a scoop of fermented sour krout to add in some gut probiotics and you have a protein packed meal to fill you up!
Be inspired, experiment, play, and have fun creating your favourite jump starter to the day! Remember, if its fresh it's going to be best! Try to add in some greens and make your breakfast colourful.
Have a great week Baysiders!
The Bayside Colonics Team