Thank you to Kelley Johnsen for her contribution on starting your day with a healthy breakfast. I know I start my day with coffee more often than not, so this is a great reminder to fuel your body with healthy foods first thing in the morning. Be sure to check out Kelley's other contributions on Nutrition and check out her blog after you read this post – you'll find the link below.
Most moms will admit that breakfast is their hardest time of day for eating healthy. This is totally understandable with the rushed mornings we have on a daily basis. Not to mention the easy options available like microwave breakfast sandwiches, frozen waffles and cereal items.
Breakfast is the most important meal of the day. Think about the time you ate dinner the night before, most likely between the hours of 5-7 p.m. Throughout the night you are fasting until breakfast. When you eat in the morning, you “break” the “fast”. This is the time to fill up your body with nutritious, filling and energizing foods.
What happens if you forget to fill the car with gas? Your body needs fuel too. Some cars need the right kind of gasoline or they sputter and don't run as efficiently. Do you want to have your body sputtering and quitting on you later in the day?
You should never skip breakfast, but surveys say moms fill up on coffee rather than healthy foods. Fill your tank right and eat a healthy filling breakfast.
So let’s give breakfast a makeover! We spend time thinking about updating our looks, hair and clothes. This week, let’s make a breakfast makeover with great tasting simple natural foods.
- Always eat within 1 hour of waking
- Eat plenty of fruit
- Add in live cultured fat free yogurt
- Get away from frozen breakfast sandwiches and waffles – make your own
- Make pancakes and waffles with healthy flours like whole wheat or gluten free
- Substitute butter and syrups with yogurt
- Occasionally substitute coffee for tea – it’s a great way to get more antioxidants
- Make a couple days a week smoothie mornings – perfect for busy mornings
- Have a hard-boiled egg with fruits and whole grains instead of scrambled eggs
- Make your own granola, muffins and breakfast bars
- For pancakes and waffles: reduce the amount of pancakes and add fresh fruits, yogurt and skip the syrup
- Make your sunny side up eggs with coconut oil instead of butter
- Add some mushrooms and other veggies to your egg sandwich
- Make muffins or quiches and freeze them so they’re easy to grab on any morning to keep you from over indulging through the day
Ideas to Jazz Up Your Mornings
Another idea to consider is making your breakfast more presentable. Have you ever been to a brunch where they have the fruit cut in pretty ways, on pretty plates? What a great way to wake with a beautiful smoothie and a few pieces of cut fruit on the glass, maybe even a sprig of mint. Presentation can make a difference in your attitude to your day. I find enjoying a healthy, happy breakfast puts a smile on my face.
Going on Experience
I had the pleasure of my Father and Stepmother here for a visit. One of the great pleasures I had was making them food – simple and delicious meals that provide energy and promote health. One thing they kept saying was how much they where eating, but it was not heavy. By the end of their visit they felt great and knew it had to do with the type of food they where eating. I am so pleased to see they are taking some ideas to change their menu for better health. Sometimes it just takes a little experience to see how easy healthy eating can be.
Make a Menu
Most moms find it easier to start by making a menu. This way you can take the guesswork out and enjoy the task of making a healthy breakfast. When we make menus, we are not as tempted to just head to the pantry for a quick cereal, bagel or toast. Taking the time to make a morning menu will help you to make the most out of a healthy morning.
Including antioxidant-rich fruits in your daily menu will help keep your immune system healthy and strong. A good tip to remember is to change your fruits and rotate them on a 3-day cycle, so you’re sure to get an assortment of vitamins and minerals.
Dark Chocolate Peanut Butter Trail Bar Recipe
(Courtesy of NaturalPeanutButter.com)
- ¾ cup Peanut Butter
- ¼ cup raw honey
- 6 tablespoons water
- 1 cup chocolate whey protein powder drink mix
- 2 cups granola cereal with raisins
- ½ cup dark chocolate chips
- In a large 8×8 pan, foil pan on bottom and sides.
- Mix honey and peanut butter over stove, mixing until smooth.
- In separate bowl, stir in water and powder mix until blended and add to peanut butter mixture.
- Stir in granola and chocolate chips until everything is combined.
- Press evenly in pan and chill for 1 hour.
- Cut into bars and enjoy.