When I was working at my 9-5 job, I could never seem to find the time to make a healthy breakfast. I convinced myself that I wasn’t hungry and would just have a small glass of juice on my way out the door. By the time I got to my office I would be starving! Lucky(?) for me we had a coffee shop in our building who happened to have the MOST delicious cinnamon buns….
You can see where this is heading right??
Well….an extra ten pounds later I knew I needed to do something different. I was in my early 20’s then, so it wasn’t too terribly difficult to lose the weight, but it did require some extra work at the gym…sigh…In any event, I learned my lesson and found some healthy, protein-rich foods to eat in the morning that are quick and easy to make, and delicious too.
Are you someone who just can’t (or won’t) eat breakfast – like I was?
Why should we eat breakfast? Studies have shown that eating breakfast will:
- help you lose more weight than non-breakfast eaters;
- decrease your risk of diabetes;
- reduce the incidence of heart disease; and
- increase memory function.
“Break the fast” within 2 hours of waking up with a nutritious, protein-packed meal to set yourself up for a successful day.
Here are some easy and tasty foods that will make you a breakfast believer in no time:
- Berries and yogurt. A cup of plain, unsweetened yogurt topped with a handful of your favorite berries will give you the energy you need to start your day….how easy is that! Berries are full of vitamins and minerals and yogurt has protein to fill you up. Curbing your hunger and balancing your blood sugar means you won’t be starving by the time you get to work and feel the need to grab a muffin (aka cupcake) or other sugary breakfast/dessert. If you don’t tolerate dairy well, there are a number of wonderful coconut and almond milk yogurts out there that are just as creamy and delicious. Top with a small handful of almonds or walnuts for some crunch and extra fiber too. If you need a bit more sweetness, add a teaspoon of local raw honey to the yogurt – yum!
- Steel cut oats. I know what you’re thinking….. “but those take forever to make!!” I used to think that too, but now I cook them in my rice cooker. This recipe is for two servings, so you can eat one immediately and freeze the other portion for another day.
- Sourdough toast with almond or cashew butter. Personally, I love the taste and texture of sourdough bread. Because of its natural enzymes, sourdough bread is also easier to digest than other types of bread. But why not peanut butter? I actually grew up eating a TON of peanut butter, but as I get older I find that it doesn’t “agree” with me like it did. This may be because most peanuts contain mold because they are grown on the ground and get very moist. This mold is also often the cause of peanut allergies. Tree nuts, like almonds and cashews, are a better choice if your body is sensitive to mold.
- Hard boiled eggs – To make the perfect hard boiled eggs, place eggs in a saucepan and cover with 1 inch of cool water. Bring water up to a boil over medium heat. Once the water boils, cover the pan and take it off of the heat. Allow the eggs to sit in the hot water 15 minutes. Peel under running water or store in the refrigerator for another day. These can also be a great snack!
- Blueberry Smoothie (or any other berry would work too) – My favorite fruit is blueberries! A smoothie is a perfect breakfast to take with you on your commute to work. Blend together: 1 cup frozen berries (organic if possible), 1 small ripe banana, 1 1/2 cup of unsweetened almond milk, 2 tablespoons of your favorite nut butter, 1 tablespoon of ground flax seeds or chia seeds and two ice cubes. Pour into your favorite travel mug and off you go.
- Overnight Oats – During the hot summer months I like to have something filling, but not too warm. Measure one serving (approximately 1/2 cup) of old fashioned oats into a mason jar. Pour in your favorite dairy or nut milk until the oats are covered (about 1 cup of milk). Add your favorite toppings: berries, nuts, seeds, spices, ground flax, yogurt – whatever you like. Put the lid on and pop it in the refrigerator. In the morning, add a little sweetener like a teaspoon of honey or maple syrup (if required) and a little milk. Stir it up and Yum!
I hope these quick and easy ways to incorporate protein into your morning will inspire you to start eating breakfast every day!
For more information about my favorite fruit, check out this article about blueberries.
To your best health!