What’s For Breakfast?
I was reading through the Conscious Cooking Blog and it hit me… about 70% of the recipes are for breakfast. Bircher Museli, Power Porridge, Pancakes, Omelette…so many great healthy breakfast ideas. Maybe too many breakfast ideas?
It was then it struck me… that when I reflect on it, breakfast is my favourite meal of the day. I love breakfast. I love that sense of setting yourself up for the day, setting your intention of the type of day you are going to have.
Will it be an “on the go” breakfast, a energy sustaining healthy breakfast, the lazy breakfast, the big celebration breakfast ..or what about that crazy combo …brunch? So many ways to breakfast and yet as a nation breakfast is often the meal we seem to give the least attention to.
You probably know that breakfast comes from the old English term to break fast, but breakfast has not always been a popular meal. Recently it’s a meal that has been completely hijacked by marketing and manufactures.
The History of Breakfast
We used to be a nation that went out to work on an egg or a bowl of porridge oats but that all changed thanks to the Kellogg’s bothers in 1880 and the invention of the Corn Flake. A breakfast that needed no preparation, simply pour and eat. It took a while to catch on but when it did…WOW. Have you been up the cereal aisle in your local supermarket recently!!! Shelves after shelves, rows and rows, every grain imaginable in every shape, favour and even colour!
But cereal is not consumed on its own… no, there are the breakfast accompaniments. As Britain emerged from the post-war years into the economically liberated 1950s, things like toasters, sliced bread, instant coffee, pre-sugared cereals and orange juice invaded the home. Daily Breakfast as we now know it today was manufactured and marketed as the best thing since the bread got its hair cut..
I can honestly say that I cannot remember the last time I had such a breakfast. Cereal, toast, fruit juice… it’s just a sugar crash waiting to happen.
It just doesn’t seem like a sensible or healthy way to set up your day.
Why Choose Breakfast Cereal?
Lack of time is the biggest reason we hear week after week on retreat as to why people are still stuck in the cereal breakfast cycle.
There is no denying that it takes only seconds to open the box, tip into the bowl and cover with milk. Its takes only minutes to consume and then you are ready to go…oh and don’t forget that the cereal is probably fortified with vitamins and minerals. Sounds like a win win doesn’t it?
All those precious moments saved in the morning. But wait… easy come and easy go. Yes this cereal option is an easy hit of fast acting energy that can get you out of the house quickly…but what happens when that fast acting energy is used up.
Like a rocket blasted into space, your blood sugar levels rise quickly after eating this food and you are literally flying ..for about 60 – 90 minutes. Then you start to drop…quickly. Like a rocket with zero fuel you are on a one way track to a crash.
As your energy levels begin to drop so does your cognitive functions, it’s a little harder to concentrate, your thinking slows down slightly, you may become distracted thinking about when you can get your next energy hit. Queue the vending machine or coffee shop. If you do make it to lunch time your energy reserves are so depleted that you are grateful for the carb heavy Meal Deal lunch option (but that’s a whole other blog…read step away from the sandwich here)
I understand that time is precious and that even a few moments saved in the morning can seem the difference between family sanity and a house full of crazy. But just because you are time poor in the mornings doesn’t mean that you need to set yourself up for a bad day.
The Bad Breakfast News
Here’s the headlines… refined carbs and processed cereals are like sugar bombs for the body. The odd one isn’t going to hurt anyone but a steady stream of sugar bombs is declaring war on your health.
You set yourself up for an energy roller coaster that means that you will consume more food over the course of the day, you are consuming high amounts of sugar which is linked to a host of disease and ill health and you are messing with your brain chemistry in setting up reliance and tolerance to sweet foods.
So make another choice… think proteins and good fats. Reduce the sugar content of the breakfast and you set yourself up for a steady release of energy.
The anti cereal healthy breakfast needn’t take a morning to prepare. Below are just some of our favourite breakfast choices, some of which take minutes to prepare and some are prepared the night before.