Your mamma had it right when she told you that breakfast was the most important meal of the day. Most of us tend to skip this meal without understanding the hormonal consequences and the havoc that missing breakfast can wreek on your body and craving centers.
Breakfast is intended to break-the-fast since you’ve been fasting all night. Some of us fast for at least 12 hours having our last meal at 7pm and breakfast somewhere between 7am and 8am. When you don’t have a break-fast meal your body can go into storage mode thinking that a famine or starvation is occurring. Other symptoms can occur like your blood sugar dropping, mental fogginess, irritability and impatience just to name a few.
If you’ve skipped breakfast it doesn’t matter if your first meal is healthy, your body is more likely to store those healthy nutrient-dense calories as fat for later use. It’s more likely that your first meal is a high sugar, high fat meal since that’s what most of us crave when we skip meals.
Let me ask you a couple of questions:
1. Do you have cravings at any point during your day?
2. Does your energy and concentration levels dip at any point during your day?
3. Are you irritable and short tempered without any real stimulus to set you off?
4. Do you find yourself nibbling and snacking all evening?
If you answered YES to even one of these questions then it’s quite possible that you are skipping breakfast or that your breakfast is not fueling you the way it should be.
A balanced breakfast sets your hormonal and energetic tone for the day. Skip breakfast and you won’t have as productive and happy a day as you could have if you'd eaten a balanced breakfast. Do yourself a favor and wake up 10 minutes earlier. Try one of the 7 breakfast ideas… they are perfect for those of us who are rushed and have limited time in the mornings.
1. Hard boiled eggs: 2 (yes 2) hard boiled eggs with an apple
2. A bowl of high fiber cereal with milk or a milk alternative: look for a cereal with a minimum of 7 grams of fiber per ½ cup and 6 grams of protein.
3. ½ cup of steel cut oatmeal with ½ tsp of cinnamon and ½ cup of berries: cook the steel cut oats ahead of time and warm up individual servings.
4. A protein shake made with 1 cup fresh or frozen fruit, 2 handfuls of spinach,1 scoop of protein powder, 1 cup milk or milk alternative and 6 walnuts.
5. A piece of 100% whole grain or gluten free toast with 1 tsp of natural peanut butter or a nut seed butter and ½ cup of Greek yoghurt
6. 1 cup of cottage cheese with 1 cup of berries
7. 1 cup of Greek yoghurt with 1 cup of berries and ½ tsp cinnamon
Would you like some helping planning out hormonally balanced meals? I have a solution to your craving problems and would like to be able to help you achieve your goals. Give me a call today…
In good health,Cheryl Wahl, RHN, Fitness LeaderNorth Shore Nutrition778-836-3831
It’s a professional hazard that I get asked a lot of food and weight loss related questions. I’m more then happy to answer food questions and get a little too excited sometimes. I love talking about food!!
I’ve noticed more and more that the questions are all stemming around the same thing.
Q: What’s the best type of oil for cooking?
A: First let me congratulate you for not being afraid of using good quality fat in your daily diet. So many people are scared to incorporate this vital macronutrient fearing that it could lead to weight gain (false). The right fat choices have actually been proven to help speed up weight loss.
It’s a commonly held belief that Extra Virgin Olive Oil is the best type of oil to use when cooking. That couldn’t be further from the truth. Extra Virgin Olive Oil is a mono-unsaturated fat, which is at the top of the heart healthy fats but is only healthy for you when it’s used at room temperature.
Using EVOO at a temperature higher than low to medium changes the molecular structure of the oil and turns the heart healthy benefits rancid. EVOO is best used for cold salads, salad dressings and low temperature cooking.
The best type of oil to use when cooking is either Grapeseed oil or coconut oil. Both of these oils can withstand higher cooking temperatures without degrading. Grapeseed oil has a very mild taste. Coconut oil is great for replacing butter in most recipes and gives your stirfried veggies a lovely mild taste.
Q: Can I eat after dinner?
A: A common follow up question to this one is, what time should I stop eating? Both are very good questions. The truth is there is no one right answer. There are many factors that need to be looked at before we give you a personalized answer.
Here are some guidelines you can use to make the decision for yourself:
1. Are you actually hungry or just bored?
If you are actually hungry then review what you had for dinner and make some improvements. Add some additional protein or fiber. You should be able to go from dinnertime to breakfast time without feeling hunger.
2. Are you working out at night, specifically lifting weights?
If the answer is yes, then I recommend you consume a post workout shake in order to give your body the nutrition it requires after a strenuous workout.
Visit my Facebook page for a new shake recipe I just posted. Please remember to LIKE my page if you LIKE the recipe J Share the recipe with your friends and family too.
3. Is nighttime eating a habit?
Most of us have a nightly routine. For me, after the kids have gone to bed, I brew a cup of tea and relax either watching my favourite show or reading a book. My personal nighttime routine does not include food.
Think about your nighttime habits and if they are congruent to your goals. I often hear this “I was so good all day and then nighttime came around it all went up in smoke.”
If this sounds like you then you might need what I call a pattern interrupt or a break in routine.
Rule of thumb for nighttime eating is to stop eating 2 hours before you go to bed. I must caution you though… this rule of thumb is only helpful for people who go to bed at a reasonable time.
Remember to go my Facebook page and like my post workout smoothie recipe.
In good health,
Cheryl Wahl, RHN, Fitness Leader
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