My ‘ 56 Healthy Breakfast recipes ’ post is one of the top 10 most read features on this site.
I had no idea when I wrote that post that so many people were looking for healthy recipes on the Web.
Now that I know, I will make it my mission to track down as many healthy breakfast recipes as I humanly can and I will surely get my assistant editors to help in this quest.
In the meantime, I thought I’d share with you what I like to eat in the morning!
Breakfast is the most important meal of the day, yet so many people skip breakfast or grab leftover pizza and call that breakfast.
The first meal of the day should ease your body from fasting while you sleep to giving you the kind of energy that will help start your day on the right foot.
Not only does eating breakfast makes sense for your body, but it makes plenty of sense when it comes to providing your brain with the type of fuel it needs to keep functioning properly.
I know mornings can be crazy and I’m sure that readers who have families must feel the pressure of getting a family ready for school or work and still find time for a healthy breakfast. That said, it’s honestly worth trying to get up even 15 minutes earlier to have breakfast. If you feel there are too many activities going on in the morning, may I suggest preparing breakfast the night before?
Here’s an example:
If you know you’re going to make smoothies the next morning, why not pull out the blender the night before, grab the cutting board, decide on which protein you’ll add, choose all the other ingredients that will go into your smoothie and select the fruits you’ll put in your smoothie and have them on your kitchen counter. You might even want to pull out the glasses for the entire family and place them on the table or counter. At night this might take you 5 minutes, but it will make a huge difference the next morning.
>>> What’s wrong with a Mc-Something type breakfast?
If your idea of breakfast has been a high carb/high fat/high sugar option such as pancakes, waffles, toast, doughnuts, cheap pastries, scones, bagels, pies, sugar cereals, breakfast bars, conventional muffins (which, let’s face it, are usually just cake), then you’re feeding your body empty and useless calories. Not to mention that after the sugar rush peaks, you’ll hit a sugar low that will send you running to find something else to eat (do you see how you can gain weight easily if you feed your body these types of foods?).
I know that when I travel, I am usually stuck having eggs for breakfast every morning since I refuse to touch the pasty and bread in most hotels. At home I usually have two to three eggs a week maximum and when I finish a carton of eggs, I will usually take a two-week break. If you are eating the traditional diner breakfast on a daily basis: fried eggs, sausages, bacon, cream cheese on your bagels, super-cheesy omelettes, then you might be eating protein, but the quality of your breakfast is again doing nothing to support your body and guess what’s happening to your arteries?
Stopping by your favourite drive-through fast food joint to grab one of the following: Egg McMuffins, Sausage McMuffins, hash browns or eggs on a bagel, is seriously putting your health in trouble.
>>>> So what am I supposed to eat in the morning?
Don’t despair, luckily there are plenty of healthy options for breakfast when you know what to eat. The key ingredient you should be looking for in your breakfast is good quality protein because that will fill your stomach and avoid those massive peaks and valleys you get from eating foods high in sugar.
To guide you along the way, I’ve listed below my own list of 8 healthy breakfast ideas:
1) Protein Shake: I love my protein smoothies. I’ve written a number of posts and I’ve also created videos showing you better options when choosing your protein supplements. The great thing about a smoothie is that I can add oatmeal, flaxseeds, wild blueberries, protein, my daily Greens+ and other fruits in one blender and in about 5 minutes I have all the nutrients my body needs in one glass.
2) Cereals: I always select cereals that are low in sugar, whole-grain and contain high-fibre. I’ve found that a healthy brand such as Kashi also has high amounts of protein and that’s music to my ears. I usually eat my healthy cereals with rice milk or 1% organic milk.
3) Boiled egg: I enjoy eating a warm boiled egg with a little bit of salt and better. I’ll often pair that with a slice of toasted and buttered spelt bread and that usually does the trick when I’m rushed in the morning.
4) Warm oatmeal: I LOVE oatmeal, I just LOVE oatmeal. I take a lot of time to think of all the toppings that go onto my oatmeal because for me it’s like creating a symphony. If you’re not as hardcore as I am when it comes to oatmeal you can make a quick bowl of oatmeal in the morning and top that off with berries, almonds and flaxseeds. It’s best to buy the plain oatmeal you cook yourself. You can buy the minute one that literally takes one minute to cook. Getting those ready oatmeal mixes where you only add water (you know the ones that come in individual packets) is just not a good idea. I’ve had those when travelling at friend’s houses who know that I was a healthy nut. In an attempt to please me they rushed to buy those high sugar cereals that I usual am not able to finish because the sugar content is way too high for me. I usually add a few teaspoons of raw sugar or some maple syrup to sweeten my oatmeal so all those other options are overkill for me.
5) Cottage cheese: I know some health experts suggest not eating protein with fruit because it petrifies in your stomach since the combination prevents proper digestion. Now, I do still eat 1% fat cottage cheese with fruits from time to time. I won’t do it too often for that reason. I’ve tried just cottage cheese with a bit of sugar on its own and I don’t find that all that exciting and prefer the combination of low-fat cottage cheese and fruit. This is also a healthy option for travellers since it’s often an option at breakfast buffets.
6) Peanut butter and jam: Yup, I still love this combination as an adult. Things have changed dramatically for me because I only buy peanut butter that contains one ingredient: 100% roasted peanut butter. I stay away from peanut butter that contains sugar, salt, hydrogenated fats and a long list of other ingredients I cannot pronounce. If you don’t like peanut butter, you can choose from almond butter, cashew butter and even sunflower butter as alternatives. When it comes to my jam, I buy jams that have very few ingredients. When I look at the list of ingredients for my jams I can see that there are two to four ingredients and they usually are limited to the list of fruits and sugar. I’ve noticed that some jam companies promote the fact that their jams contain 50% fruits. I’m quite partial to those types of jams as well because I’d rather eat fruit than fillers. There are also loads of brands of jams that are sweetened with fruit juice instead of sugar and if I can buy those on sale, I usually don’t hesitate.
7) Fruit plate: I eat a plate of fruit three to four times a week. I usually buy the same fruits because I can find them year round and I’ll add any seasonal fruit I can. Before sharing the fruits that make it on my plate, let me say that the experience of eating fruits that are properly ripened when I’m on vacation down south is surreal and really makes me understand how picking fruits when they are still green and shipping them for hundreds of kilometres to a market near me really alters the taste of fruits. Since I live in a country where there are four months of winter, eating local produce year round is just not an option for me. That said, I usually gravitate towards bananas, pears, red or black grapes and tangerines for my fruit plate. Since there is no protein in a fruit plate, I’ll usually have a protein-rich snack two hours after having eaten my fruit plate.
#8)Healthy muffins: I know this might shock a few, but you can eat muffins that are not packed with sugar, hydrogenated fats and other bad stuff you don’t want to put in your body. I’ve been buying at a local natural healthy food store for years called Big Carrot because they use wholesome ingredients in their muffins and good oils. I also rarely (if ever) eat a full muffin. Since the muffins at Big Carrot are quite hardy, I usually cut those muffins in half.
So the next time you’re rushed in the morning and dismiss the idea of breakfast and figure that you’ll stop by a doughnut shop to grab the morning special for $2, think again because going on an empty stomach until lunch or loading up with sugar and saturated fats in the morning will NOT do you any good.
>>> Here are other posts on healthy breakfasts that you should check out:
Photo by Dano
Photo of oatmeal by Flirty Kitty
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