Monday, September 9, 2013

Do You Eat Breakfast?

You may have heard that breakfast is the most important meal of the day and it is true. Skipping breakfast or eating the wrong kinds of food for breakfast is a recipe for weight gain and attention-deficit disorder (ADD), not only for children but also for adults.

How can children sit still in school and concentrate when their diets do not provide the nutrients that their brains need to function properly? Breakfast such as cold cereals, bread, jam, pastries, and sweet juice provide few nutrients and rapidly flood the bloodstream with sugar, resulting in a letdown an hour or two later. More than any other organ, the brain needs sugar, in the form of glucose, so when our blood sugar drops after the morning rush brought on by low-fat, high-sugar foods; distraction and unclear thinking result. Instead, assure a steady supply of glucose, by eating fats (not sugar), which slow down the absorption of glucose into the bloodstream. Consuming cod liver oil provides vitamin A and D to ensure that the minerals in your food, especially calcium, are absorbed. Many studies have found that the omega-3 fatty acids in cod liver oil can improve brain function, memory, learning, and behavioral disorders. Vitamin D and calcium combined with a good diet that includes trace minerals can improve disorders such as ADD. Anyone with ADD must avoid all trans fats as research has demonstrated that trans fats promote ADD/ADHD (hyperactivity disorder) in children.

Eating breakfast is also a key factor in maintaining successful weight loss. A study found that overweight adolescents were less likely to eat breakfast than those whose weight was normal. Dieters who eat breakfast lose more weight and are less likely to engage in impulsive snacking. Snacking constantly undermines your health and your attempts to lose weight:

1. You never give your body a needed rest from digestion, freeing your energy for other life tasks.
2. Your body loses touch with key signals that help you know when you've had enough.
3. You begin to eat according to psychological or emotional responses, rather than physiological ones.

Examples of good high-fat breakfast:
Scrambled eggs with buttered toast or bacon
A smoothie containing coconut oil and whole milk yogurt
Oatmeal with butter or cream
A cheese omelet
Smoked wild salmon with toast and butter or coconut oil

What Do We Eat For Breakfast?

For a few months now Evan, Elin, and I eat soaked steel-cut oatmeal cooked with apple or banana, organic raisins, and a mix of nuts such as almonds and walnuts. We sometimes add organic maple syrup and vanilla extract for variety. I drink one glass of milk from pasture-fed cows. On top of that, we both drink one tablespoon of coconut oil and a serving of cod liver oil. Remember that cod liver oil works synergistically with coconut oil. Sometimes I make toasts out of whole wheat bread and eat it with butter and cheese.

I realize I haven't felt the need to snack in a long time because eating a full breakfast keeps my hunger away until it's time for lunch. I also try my best to not buy or bring snacks home. I'd be too easily tempted if I see custard-filled bread or chocolate bread on the table. So that is also one way for me to avoid snacking. There is just no snack at home and I like it that way. Sometimes in the afternoon I have "fruits' time" with Elin and we both get to enjoy fresh fruits as snacks. Read here for tips on how to prevent children from excess sugar and overeating.

What does your breakfast look like? Do you have recipes that you can share?

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