I have a lifetime of experience in “dieting” and eventually, developing a healthy lifestyle. While dieting never worked in the long run, I could lose weight temporarily. The pounds always came back with a few extra. After many years of frustration, I finally discovered David’s Way and finally have permanent weight management skills. One thing is common to both, however, I need to eat breakfast to lose pounds or maintain a healthy weight. Without breakfast, I struggle to make healthy choices all day and by nighttime, I’m grabbing every high-carb snack within reach.
Children Need Breakfast Too!
I was raised in a home where breakfast was non-negotiable. Every morning, my mom had a hot breakfast cooked for me on the table. Occasionally, she allowed me to have cold cereal, but that was not the normal routine in our home. I was more likely to have oats, eggs and bacon. I excelled at school from the beginning. On school days, I always had oats, eggs and bacon. I had fantastic focus and was relaxed and confident. I always noticed some of the children that struggled in school did not bring an apple at recess. Sometimes at lunch, they would forego the healthy offerings provided by our school lunch. They said that they “didn’t eat that stuff”. I ate it all because my mother had always taught me that nutrition was critical. I always believed that there was a correlation between my success in school and what I ate. Now, it’s accepted that children must eat a nutritious breakfast to do well in their studies.
After several hours of resting, your metabolism gets a jump start from eating breakfast and burns more efficiently throughout the day. Breakfast helps us focus and organize our day and gives us the needed energy to work. Some studies indicate a link between eating breakfast and lower chances of getting diabetes, heart disease and excess pounds. It’s not known if the decrease in these diseases is due to eating breakfast or if people who have healthy habits that decrease the incidence of these diseases, simply include breakfast in an arsenal of healthy habits that tend to ward off disease. My experience of eating too much throughout the day if I didn’t eat breakfast is now known to be a pitfall of skipping the morning meal. Without that initial surge of energy, you will grab high carb, usually high fat and high sugar to compensate. Skipping breakfast is an almost guaranteed way to fail at weight management.
Enough Is Enough!
We all tend to rationalize when we hear something that we like that is relevant to weight control. If a program allows sugar, then usually those who follow that program find every way in the world to eat as much sugar as possible and still lose weight. When I say you need to eat breakfast, proceed with caution! Breakfast is a time when we tend to crave carbs for quick energy. High carb sugary cereals, pastries, cake and cookies are not fit breakfast offerings. Whipping into a convenience store for a honeybun and coffee won’t do. That’s just junk food and will do you more harm than good. Breakfast buffets are mine fields. While there’s plenty of good, hearty protein to choose from, there’s also regular, high-carb pancakes, fruit in sugary syrups, mile-high white flour biscuits and waffles galore. It’s better to avoid buffets of any kind and breakfast is better prepared at home. It takes less time to cook eggs and oatmeal than it does to go to the drive-through window. How long are you willing to wait for that sugar-laden, extra-large, caramel mocha frappe coffee flavored thing topped with whipped cream that is sold for coffee? If you like your coffee flavored add a sprinkle of cinnamon and the zero calorie sweetener of your choice. If you like it watered down with creamers, you can do that too. You will save tons of money on “coffee” this way when you make a flavored coffee at home for pennies instead of the $3-6 that you may pay in-store while you’re desperately trying to avoid being late for work. If you like pancakes, we have reviewed two great protein pancakes here and here. Just click those links to read all about them. I make the Birch Bender’s frequently. My autistic son loves the chocolate chip variety. It ROCKS! I pair them with Maple Grove Farms Sugar Free Pancake Syrup for a delightful sensory experience all the way around while still packing in good nutrition. Make sure to get a good mix of complex carbs, protein and fiber at breakfast to give you an edge on hunger control throughout your day.
The Glorified Milkshake
While it is entirely possible to build a better smoothie, there are many that are as unhealthy as any other high-carb, high-sugar, high-calorie breakfast offering. I love a great protein shake that is made with protein powder, milk, PB2 and cinnamon and a 0 calorie sweetener. It gets my day off to a great start with controlled calories, high protein and low carbs with 0 added sugar. Some smoothies are made with wholesome ingredients in sane portions but many feature yogurt with added sugar, ice cream, peanut butter with added sugar, sweetened syrups or chocolate. Many have soaring calorie counts upwards of 1000 calories and massive carbohydrates. There are some people who think that fruit is “Free”. It’s not. A smoothie with 6 pieces of fruit has a lot of calories and the fruit is already processed to a point where it’s going to cause a significant surge of insulin when it all hits your bloodstream all at one time. Think about it. Would you eat 5 pieces of whole fruit? Probably not, but when you eat whole fruit, your body has to deal with metabolizing it from it’s whole state. It will be digested much slower, calling for a more gradual insulin release. When you eat anything that causes an insulin spike like pureed fruit, you’re setting yourself up for more intense hunger later. Your body will then try to balance that insulin with an increase in appetite and you will usually crave more simple carbs to balance the insulin quickly and a vicious cycle of overeating has begun. A piece of fruit with your breakfast is fine but please don’t buy into the mentality that a fruit bowl dumped into a blender is “Free”.
If you like a little something sweet in the morning, we have many recipes for you. The recipe for the scrumptious bread pictured above is found here. If you would like to look at other breakfast recipes go to the Home Page and type “breakfast” into the search box and you will find many good recipes to help you get your day started with good nutrition and smiles. I promise, you won’t feel deprived or hungry. Just protect your stash, your co-workers may get curious. Especially if they skipped breakfast. 😉