Breakfast has become a carb-fest.
The low-fat dietary recommendations changed breakfast more than any other meal. It has become the all-American carb-fest. Change it back to a vintage breakfast. Eat real food, more fat, and skip the refined carbohydrates. Eating fat in the morning means that you will feel full longer and eat less throughout the day. Bacon and eggs fried in butter, anyone? Yum!
Starting your day with fruit, cereal and skim milk is what we have been instructed to do for 'heart health.' But such a large slug of carbohydrates gets your day off to a pretty rough start from a blood sugar perspective. And all that insulin gets your body ready to store fat -- not the best idea if you have weight to lose. Check out the blood sugar graphs, below, and rethink breakfast!
My tale of two breakfasts:
One morning, I ate 1/2 cup grape nuts, 1/2 cup skim milk, and a banana. This is the 'poster child' of an American Heart Association (AHA) 'heart healthy' breakfast: no added sugars, whole grain cereal, plenty of fruit and fiber. The following day, I ate an omelet made with eggs, cheddar cheese, salami, spinach, and bell peppers, all fried in butter. Let's look at what happened to my blood sugar:
As you can see, my AHA 'heart healthy' breakfast made my blood sugar spike above 200mg/dL... for context, most doctors advise that post-meal spikes ideally stay below 140mg/dL. After a low-fat, high-carb breakfast like cereal with skim milk and a banana, the pancreas is scrambling to release enough insulin to bring blood sugar levels down... mine were elevated for three plus hours!! Then they crashed, I got hungry, and the cycle often begins again as a hungry person reaches for that banana-nut muffin. In contrast, the omelet was pretty boring from a blood sugar perspective (but pretty yummy from a tastebud perspective!) No scramble to bring blood sugar back into a normal range. Definitely gentler for the pancreas. And, given the epidemic of pre-diabetes and diabetes sweeping our nation, figuring out how to be gentle with one's pancreas seems like a very good idea indeed.
Higher-fat breakfast ideas.
- Eggs with any of the following: cheese, avocado, tomatoes, sautéed greens, sausage, bacon.
- Ham and cheese or salmon with cream cheese.
- Full-fat greek yogurt (plain) - add vanilla, 2 tbs heavy cream, stevia/xylitol/erythritol, berries, nuts.
- Leftovers from dinner.
- Bulletproof coffee (coffee blended with butter and coconut oil); nothing else! Sounds a little crazy (Butter in my coffee?), but it is creamy and delicious!
- LCHF breakfast ideas from dietdoctor.com
- Paleo/Primal breakfast ideas (including pancakes!) from marksdailyapple.com
- Paleo breakfast ideas from Pittsburgh's primalpalate.com