A Bit of Breakfast

4 Jan

Well good morning. It is just a few days into the Body-Mind-Spirit project and things are going just fine. The weather is back to gray and cloudy, but I still managed to get the dogs out on a long walk this morning. With some of the time I now have (free time? weird, but awesome) I’m trying to increase awareness around eating. As I was preparing for this project last month, I spent some time tracking my diet just out of curiosity.  I’ve done this before for the goal of weight loss and only paid attention to calories.  Instead, I was interested in the nutrients I was getting and any pattern to my eating that I hadn’t noticed.  Sure enough, I noticed a tendency to eat very little early in the day and then feeling very hungry at night. I think this type of pattern is common and it definitely perpetuates itself- if I’m full in the morning from eating a bunch of food at night, then I won’t want to eat much. So it goes on and on.

Keeping in mind that breakfast is THE MOST IMPORTANT MEAL OF THE DAY, I’ve been putting more effort into my breakfasts. I try to keep it light as I just want to go back to sleep if I eat pancakes or something along those lines.  I try to avoid lots of sugar and try to bring in protein. Also, I’ve been using the juicer, a great way to use up our produce which is always overflowing thanks to our CSA.  It is also quite helpful for my 5 a day goal as well.

There is a pretty big body of research out there on the importance of breakfast, demonstrating that forgoing breakfast on a regular basis can lead to obesity.  By eating smaller meals regularly throughout the day, it is also easier to maintain blood sugar to prevent overeating, stabilize mood, and increase energy levels.  I have certainly noticed that if I skip breakfast then I eat a much bigger lunch and dinner.

Here’s some pictures of my breakfast meals this week:

IMG_2359

Chai tea with almond milk, kefir with cooked almonds and ginger and let’s not forget those yummy clementines! 

Juice: spinach, apple, kelp powder, nutritional yeast. 

IMG_2368

Chai tea, Bob’s Red Mill hot cereal with stewed apple, cinnamon, cardamom and kefir.  

Juice: grapefruit, mixed greens, ginger, kelp powder, nutritional yeast. 

IMG_2371Rooibus chai tea, kefir in a cup, gluten free bread with almond butter. 

Juice: apple, clementine (bye bye, sweet clementines), kale, ginger.  

A little bit about the things I am eating:

  • Kefir- oh I love this stuff!  It reminds me of drinking yogurt when I was a high school exchange student living in Finland.  I thought it was very odd and delicious and usually had kefir for breakfasts and snacks, usually with bread, cheese and cucumbers.  I was pretty excited to see it a few years ago here in the US.  Kefir is a fermented milk drink and it contains lots of probiotics, which are great for digestive health.  It is said to have more nutrients than yogurt.  I like the thin texture and find that it sits better with my stomach than yogurt tends to for whatever reason.  
  • Gluten free things like hot cereal and tiny bread- I’ve been on and off of this gluten free train for years now.  The rundown is that years ago I was diagnosed with a wheat allergy.  Now this is not the same thing as celiac disease, which is much more serious.  However, if eating wheat regularly, I have some unpleasant symptoms such as skin breakouts, itchiness, sneezing, upset stomach and itchy, bloodshot eyes.  In general, the more I eat wheat products, the worse I feel.  The irony is that I grew up in the land of wheat fields, the Palouse region of North Idaho/ Eastern Washington.  So I’m just trying to steer clear of wheat at this point.  This is so much easier now than ever before, with gluten free products all over the place.
  • Juice- I’ve been looking up juice recipes in the book Food as Medicine by Dr. Dharma Singh Khalsa.  Juices offer a great way to take in even more nutrients from fresh fruits and vegetables.  I’ve been focusing on juices that can help improve thyroid function with things like spinach, greens and kelp powder.

What do you like to have for breakfast?

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