Breakfast is the most important meal of the day and should NEVER be skipped. Unfortunately, we usually reach for the easiest answer to “What’s for breakfast?” Boxed cereal is the number one item on the breakfast menu. More than 2.7 billion packages of cereal are sold in grocery stores each year. It’s the third most popular supermarket product (behind soda pop and bread). This translates to an average of 10 pounds, or 160 bowls, of cereal per American each year.
Extruded grains are industrially processed foods, including “healthy” breakfast cereals, which really aren’t so healthy. For all boxed breakfast cereals, grains are extruded — forced out of a hole at high temperature with pressure in order to make them into the various shapes typically found in breakfast cereals. The extrusion process destroys most of the nutrients in the grains, including fatty acids.
Angel starts her day with a hot breakfast.
Industrial processing not only destroys the nutrients in cereals, but makes them more difficult to digest. In addition, sugar, white flour, hydrogenated oils, and synthetic vitamins are added to cereals.
A healthful breakfast doesn’t come out of a cereal box and it doesn’t have to take a lot of time. In fact, most healthy breakfasts take only a few minutes to prepare:
1) Make rolled oats, not the instant kind, which has been further processed and sugar is the main ingredient. My favorite oatmeal is with apples and walnuts, but add any dried fruit or mash a soft fruit like a banana into your oatmeal. Prepare enough for two mornings and refrigerate half for later in the week. When reheating, all you have to do is add a little more liquid, heat, and stir.
2) Hard-boiled eggs are another breakfast item which can be made in advance of your busy morning. And it takes only a minute to scramble a few eggs.
3) Toast is great, when it’s a whole grain. Spread a little butter or fruit-only jelly and you have some sticking power. In a hurry? make a peanut butter and jelly sandwich to eat on the run.
4) Left-over brown rice from last night’s dinner can be warmed with milk or chicken broth for a nutritious start to the day. Add a piece of fruit or yogurt.
5) Fruit smoothies come together in a flash right in your blender.
6) French toast or pancakes made with whole wheat and top with fruit-only jam or applesauce. Don’t forget blueberries, a super way to start your morning.
7) Don’t have time to cook? Who says that you have to have “breakfast” food? How about an egg salad sandwich or a piece of chicken from last night’s dinner? Or a handful of nuts, sliced fruit, and an oatmeal cookie (only if you made the cookie yourself with whole grains and honey).
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