Jan. 3, 2020

Breakfast of Champions

By Carly Caprio 

You’ve heard it before; it’s the most important meal of the day.  And it is true! Breakfast is necessary because you are literally ‘breaking your fast’ from hours of sleeping.  The first foods you put in your body will affect your mood, concentration and stamina throughout the school day.  Protein, fiber and healthy oils are good things to feed your brain in the morning. Below are some super easy and fast breakfast options that will support your energy and brain health.  The bottom list are those to avoid. 

FANTASTIC FOODS FOR BREAKFAST

  1. FRUIT - The easiest and fastest food ever.  Fruit gives you fiber, natural sugar, and vitamins to start your day
  2. NUTS OR NUT BUTTER - Combine this with fruit and you have a great breakfast! Nut butters include peanut butter, almond butter, and have you tried cashew butter!? It is creamy and delicious. 
  3. OATMEAL with FRUIT and NUTS - You can eat this cold like a cereal or hot like porridge. Either way you have a healthy meal. 
  4. EGG WHITE OMELET 
  5. AVOCADO ON WHOLE GRAIN TOAST
  6. YOGURT - combine with fruit and nuts for a great breakfast 
  7. SUPERFOOD SMOOTHIE - combine your favorite fruit, nut butter, avocado, yogurt and even throw in some kale or spinach, flax seeds, and/or spices like cinnamon to create a delicious smoothie you can sip on throughout the morning. 

FOODS TO AVOID: What is the common ingredient in the foods to avoid below - SUGAR. If some of these are your favorite foods, don’t worry. Your taste buds actually change over time.  If you start eating less sugary foods, your body will actually not like them anymore. Your body will start liking whatever you feed it! So give those fruits and veggies a few more tries and you will soon be munching away on some excellent brain foods and save those sugary snacks for a weekend treat!  

AVOID ALL PROCESSED FOODS: Any food that is altered so much that it doesn’t look like a whole food anymore. These include

    1. POP TARTS or other packaged pastries. Even frozen pancakes or waffles can be filled with sugar, corn syrup and other sluggish foods. 
    2. GLOWING COLORFUL CEREALS - Fruity Pebbles, Lucky Charms, etc. 
    3. SUGARY CEREALS - If your cereal is coated with a frosting of sugar, it is not brain food. Try to find a whole grain cereal and add raisins or small pieces of dates to sweeten it 
    4. SUGARY STARBUCKS DRINKS - If you enjoy morning coffee, try to avoid getting a flavored coffee with whole milk and whipped cream.  Try a regular coffee with steamed oat milk instead.  
    5. CANDY - Do I have to explain this one!?

EXPERIMENT - Try starting your day eating foods from the first list and see how you feel. Then compare it to how you feel when you eat foods from the second list. After eating sugary foods are you left feeling sluggish, tired and unmotivated?  Your body is smart! It will tell you what it wants.