When I look at the typical breakfast food offerings at many restaurants, supermarkets, and food trucks, and I think about the health of many nations around the globe, I want to cry. Muffins, bagels, donuts, pancakes, waffles, French toast sticks… Want some bacon, sausage, or fried potatoes with that, ma’am? Though I’m a vegetarian, this is normally asked in restaurants or brunch places and then I’ve to awkwardly point out that I’m a vegetarian since birth! Sigh. But you get the gist right?
Then there’s what marketing tells you is a “well-balanced breakfast”: the image of a big bowl of cereal and a few decorative strawberries on top, with a tall glass of orange juice. You get the idea that you need the calcium in that milk, that vitamin C in that orange juice, and the carbs in that cereal for energy. But do you?
Eating like this may be okay once in a while, but if you do so often, I guarantee these foods will make you sick, one way or another.
Why are familiar breakfast foods not great for you?
Simply put, to the cells in your body, a bowl of cereal, or a bagel, or a piece of toast, or a muffin are all no different than a dessert. Processed carbohydrates and sugars cause blood sugar and insulin levels to rise. The insulin easily ushers all that sugar into your fat cells, where it becomes stored energy, also known as body fat.
For meat-eaters, the animal fats in bacon and sausage can glom up arteries and lead to heart attacks and strokes. The salt in cured meats and other processed foods causes us to retain water and pushes the blood pressure up. This is all a recipe for weight gain, obesity, high blood pressure and cholesterol… and eventually, heart disease.
So… what should we eat for breakfast?
The answer is basic healthy eating advice: fruits and vegetables, whole (unprocessed) grains, and healthy proteins and fats. This is not a trend, this is not a hippie opinion. The evidence is overwhelming. And I love sugary goods or sweet breakfasts. Like, I used to add sugar to almost everything in my morning meal; my mornings weren’t complete until I satisfied my sweet tooth. But, now I treat it with respect because it can (and does) cause great harm to the human body if eaten often. I’m talking about processed sugar here. Natural sugars found in fruits and veggies or other organic foods are healthy and must be included in the diet. Brown sugar, though it is better than processed white/castor sugar, should also be consumed in limited quantity.
But many people need more guidance than just a list of food groups, including how to do so when you have a busy life.
So here’s what I eat
My days are usually booked over busy schedules. At least the weekdays. That is why, I need something quick, easy, and transportable. Plus, it needs to be
- Frozen fruit: berries, mixed fruit, fruit with kale bits, whatever. Fruit is frozen at the peak of freshness, so the quality and vitamin content can be better than what’s in the produce aisle. We buy large bags of frozen mixed berries at the wholesale club or discount grocery, as they are much more economical than fresh and don’t go bad.
- Nuts and/or seeds and/or grains of your preference: for example, unsalted nuts, toasted seeds or grains, or a combination such as
a low-sugargranola. I love munching on almonds.
- Your favorite yogurt, ideally plain or low-sugar.
Either the night before or the day of work, grab a plastic container that can hold at least a few cups, and fill with the frozen fruit, heaped up at the top (mine holds 3.5 cups). Defrost it in the microwave (mine takes about 3 minutes). Put a top on it. Throw that in your lunch box alongside a snack-sized baggie of nuts and/or seeds and/or grains (I like cashews), and the yogurt. Don’t forget your spoon.
Eat at your desk and be the envy of your colleagues. And the fruits are great for a glowing skin!
This is literally my breakfast sitting on my desk.
Why is this a healthy breakfast?
The fruit is not a token sprinkle, nor a decorative touch. The fruit makes up the bulk of this meal. There’s fiber in the fruit, and plant sugars in their natural form, not to mention healthy fat in the nuts, and protein in the yogurt. A low-sugar yogurt will leave us feeling more satisfied, for longer. We won’t get the insulin spike that triggers hunger pangs (unlike when we eat processed carbs).
If you want to step it up a notch, ditch the dairy. We can get plenty of calcium and other vitamins from leafy greens and other veggies. Personally, I’m not there yet, as I love yogurt, and have weighed the added benefits of my beloved creamy protein and probiotics against the recognized risks of regular consumption of fatty and processed products. So, I limit my intake of such products as much as I
Please make healthy choices regarding your food intake. Health is Wealth!!!
P.S. This breakfast “diet” was suggested to me by my doctor and I adapted to it after years of sabotaging myself over my food choices over the most important meal of the day. Shared with you a piece of my doctor recommended healthy eating habit!
Also, this is what I’m doing for the past 2 months or so. Back in my home country in India, the story is different. Indian breakfasts are quite healthy already and very much fulfilling. Plus, many traditional households still rely heavily on protein intake for breakfast which is overall fulfilling. I’ll share some recipes in another blog post.
Feel free to ask any questions or share your ideas in the comment section below. Alternately, I’d really appreciate for you to share this content on your social media platform if you found it useful so that others can benefit from it too. If you have any doubts or want a personal clarification, send me an email on email@example.com. For more inspiration, fun, and smiles, follow me on Instagram
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—–Have Hope. Keep Faith—–
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