Breakfast of Champions

IMAG0431Breakfast. It can be strangely polarizing – some people can’t live without it, while others find it nauseating. Then there’s all the “should”: You should eat breakfast within one hour of waking, whether you want to or not. You should eat a breakfast rich in protein and low in carbohydrates. You should never, ever skip breakfast. Ever.

As with all nutrition “do’s and don’t’s,” there is a certain rationale behind all these rules, and some truth to all of them.

However, you don’t have to eat breakfast if you really don’t want to. In fact, the only rule I recommend following is the 12-hour rule: leave at least 12 hours between your last meal of one day and the first meal of the next. So if you finish dinner at 9pm, don’t eat any earlier than 9am. This gives your body the time it needs to complete the full cycle of digestion and detoxification while you sleep.

As for what to eat, it’s really up to you. Here are some of my personal favorites:

  • Homemade granola with yogurt*
  • Smoothies – so many smoothie ideas! You can find infinite recipes for whatever you like. Or check this out for ideas.
  • Hot cereal made with sweet brown rice, millet, or a blend – see recipe below
  • Steel cut oats, prepared in the slow cooker overnight with nuts & dried fruit
  • Scrambled egg with spinach, broccoli, mushrooms (or any veggies you like), with salsa and avocado
  • If you’re daring, try a fresh juice. You can purchase one at Greenlife or Earth Fare, or see what I make at home. Note: if you try a juice, drink it first on an empty stomach, then follow with something more substantial, like yogurt or an egg.

*If you eat yogurt, I recommend plain, full-fat yogurt (Yes, full fat – trust me.) You can add vanilla extract, honey or agave nectar to sweeten. Throw in some fresh or frozen berries and you’ve got your own version of flavored yogurt – minus about 5 teaspoons of added sugar.

Hot Cereal:

  • 1/2 cup cooked millet, sweet brown rice, or quinoa (KEEN-wah)
  • 1 cup – 1.5 cups unsweetened almond milk, coconut milk, cow’s milk, or combination
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • Pinch salt
  • 2 tsp raw honey, Agave nectar, or fresh maple syrup
  • Chopped walnuts, almonds, sunflower seeds, pecans, or whatever you like
  • Dried fruit of choice (no added sweetener) – cherries are my favorite
  • 1 spoonful nut butter or tahini

Place grains, liquid, cinnamon, and salt in a saucepan and bring to a boil. Immediately turn heat to low and simmer about five minutes, until most liquid is absorbed. Stir in everything else. If it’s too thick, add more liquid. If too thin, let simmer another minute or so, uncovered. You can experiment with infinite substitutions – fresh fruit, different grains, spices, or nuts, etc. Enjoy!

Recipe courtesy of InsiderWellness.com (coming soon).

What’s your favorite breakfast? Share in the comments below!

Written by Sam

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