Breakfast is by far the most important meal of the day. You’ve heard it before. I could go on and on about how it jumpstarts your body and how it sets the stage for weight loss or weight gain (favorably or unfavorably for both).
I’m not into meal plans. I’ll do them if specially requested but I’m of firm belief that we should eat when we’re hungry so long as they are the right foods. You all know broccoli is good for you (not for me as it gives me the farts; well I guess that makes it also not good for my girlfriend when I eat it too) and deep fried potatos are terrible for you. You know that a lean cut of meat is better than pizza.
When people tell me they don’t know what to eat I’m sorry but you’re full of shit. And probably literally as well (your GI tract probably looks like a nuclear waste field)!
You may not know HOW to eat for your health or the goals you have (weight loss, muscle gain, etc) and that’s where meal plans can help.
I guarantee you this: screw up your breakfast and the whole day is most likely going to be bad. Why? Again blood sugar level fluctuations, poor food choices when you finally get hungry, starving yourself half the day and over caffienating to get by on energy…I could go on and into detail but I’ll spare you.
The Exception to the Rule
Before I continue with this breakfast is for champions speech I want those that simply have ZERO appetite upon waking to read this: http://articles.elitefts.com/articles/nutrition/logic-does-not-apply-part-2-breakfast/
I very much agree with what he’s saying in this article. If I didn’t wake up starving every morning and in mental need of energy I would probably follow these suggestions.
I do have two logistic and realistic problems with this article:
When people miss breakfast their next meal is usually not healthy. A muffin and large coffee at Tim Hortons is not healthy. I don’t care if you went with the cran-bran muffin or not!
If the above happens you set off a far worse cycle of insulin/blood sugar ups and downs that leads to far more terrible food choices in the evening.
The people most guilty of missing breakfast are also the ones most “busy” in the morning. Moms especially. Busy-bodies generally don’t slow down – period. Until they’re sleeping of course (which probably isn’t enough either). So I’m again, assuming that later in the day you’re most likely not packing and/or preparing the most nutritious of meals the rest of the day either.
Now if I’m wrong and you missing breakfast is normal and when you do start eating, you’re eating clean, enough food and keeping those blood sugar levels stable all the way until bedtime, I salute you! Keep doing you!
This Breakfast Is For Champions!
Steak and eggs. Oatmeal and protein powder. Egg whites and cottage cheese. Soy milk and Kashi cereal. Ask 10 different people what they would consider the healthiest breakfast and you’ll get 10 different answers. So the following is MY OPINION, nothing more.
1) Cook a bunch of Quinoa (it is like rice; you cook it 1 part quinoa to 2 parts water) the night before. I like to cook a cup at a time which gives me enough for 3-4 days. In the morning reheat 1/2 a cup of quinoa. You could cook it but I’m trying to save you time by having you cook it the night beforehand. Why quinoa versus oatmeal? Read this and this. I’m simply one of those people that when I eat oats too often it develops into gastrointestinal stress. Quinoa never does that. I do eat oatmeal from time to time, just not regularly.
2) Add 1/4 cup Nutracleanse. I’ll do a product review on this stuff in the near future but for now just go buy some and try it. Read about it all here: http://www.nutracleanse.biz/aboutus.php Where to buy it is also on the website (there are a zillion places and I may start carrying it in the future).
3) Add in a dash, splash, handful and sprinkle of every wonderful superfood you can think of to the mix. Get creative. For my creation I added this:
I choose these because: the Navitas Trail Mix (goldenberries, goji berries and mulberries) are fruits high in lots of good nutrients/vitamins that I would never eat otherwise. Navtias Cocao Nibs (raw cocoa), we’ve all heard chocolate is good for us; sorry but cocao is good for us, “chocolate is good for us” junkies are probably choosing the wrong kind of “chocolate.” I get my Navitas products from Choices Grocery Market (the Navitas packaging in Canada looks a little different; clear bags). It’s pricey, I’ll warn you, but you’re not using that much each day. Almonds and walnuts are good fats and good for my brain. But mix your nuts often. Cashews, pecans, pistachios; no rules except don’t use a lot or you’ll blow your calories way outta line! Cinnamon tastes good but it’s good for blood sugar stabilizing as well.
I usually don’t weigh my dashes of this stuff but for arguement sake this time I did: came up with 5g of cocao nibs, 33g of the trail berry mix, 10g of sliced almonds, 10g of walnuts and copious amounts of cinnamon.
4) Splash 150-300mL of Almond Breeze (almond “milk”) to desired consistency (see below). Mix well as the Nutracleanse absorbs a great deal of the liquid. I choose almond “milk” because cow’s milk is crap. Look up lactose intolerance, especially by race (eg. near 100% of Asians do not produce the lactase enzyme required to break down lactose, milk’s carbohydrate/sugar). Rice milk is disgusting. Soy milk is crap. Almond milk is a better compromise. Suck it up and buy the “original” “unsweetened” variety. Way less calories to deal with.
Looking for a more porridge type consistency: just use 150mL of Almond Breeze and it’ll look like this:
For a more cereal type consistency (which I prefer) simply add an addtional 150mL of Almond Breeze and it’ll look like this:
The Nutrition Label
Being that I actually weighed everything this time (1/2 cup cooked quinoa, 1/4 cup Nutracleanse, 5 g cocao nibs, 33g goldenberry-mulberry-goji berry mix, 10g walnuts, 10g sliced almonds, copious cinnamon) I can provide some caloric and other info:
Total Calories: 539 cals
Total Fat: 27g (all good fats)
Total Carbs: 63g
Total Fiber: 20g (yes, you read that right!)
Total Protein: 18g
Try this Ultimate Breakfast for one week! Most likely you’ll eat less overall in your day (if you’re struggling with that). Most likely you’ll make better food choices the rest of your day (due to stable blood sugar levels). Most likely you’ll be so full and full of energy that you’ll find yourself extremely productive in the morning. And most likely you’ll be leaner come the end of the week!!
Freaking out about the 500+ calories. Look, say if you eat 3-4 meals a day, even if all of them were this dense (which they shouldn’t be unless you’re trying to pack on muscle) that would still only put you around 1500-2000 cals/day which is the appropriate amount for most people trying to lose weight and be healthy. Also starting with this satiating (appetite destroying is more like it) of a meal in the morning means you won’t be super hungry all day and pig out later. So in the long run “front loading” your calories, in my opinion, is the sane way to fat loss, muscle gain and maintain high energy levels throughout your day.
20g of fiber: most of us don’t get that in a day, let alone in one meal. Add in veggies eaten throughout the day. Add in an apple a day (good practice). Add in fiber from other quality grains (if you’re eating any)…you’ll easily hit 30-50g of fiber per day. A great amount for staying “clean” and keeping things moving well through our gastrointestinal tract.
18g of protein: 3.5 whole egg equivalent. This takes care of enough for the morning. Add more in later meals if you have greater daily protein needs or train in the morning.
Vegetarian: I don’t do this on purpose but it’s worth arguing for those that are anti-animal protein than this meal is vegetarian friendly.
Need I say more???
Give it a try and let me know how it goes!
A HUGE WARNING!!! For those on ANY medication read this!!!
Look, I’m not a nutritionist, dietician, doctor, guru or anything of the sort. I said before this Ultimate Breakfast is my opinion of what’s best for health, weight mangement and dietary sanity.
High fiber intake can lead to a blocking/lessening of medications (and dietary supplements) when taken around the same time. If you’re on birth control for example, and take your pill in the morning, DO NOT be eating 10-20g of fiber with your pill. That’s asking for trouble.