|Warm Red Quinoa with Berries and Toasted Pecans|
Most of us have probably heard at some point that breakfast is the most important meal of the day. But why? Here are 7 reasons to start your day off with a healthy breakfast:
- A healthy breakfast jump-starts your body after a good night’s sleep, increasing your energy level. There is probably at least a 10 hour period between the last thing you eat at night (9PM), and breakfast (7AM). If you skip breakfast, that’s about a 15 hour period that you haven’t eaten, and your tank is then running on empty.
- Studies have shown that people who eat breakfast perform better in school and at work than people who skip breakfast.
- Studies have also shown that people who eat breakfast have improved memory and cognitive functions.
- People who eat breakfast regularly tend to eat a healthier diet.
- Studies have shown that adolescents who skip breakfast have a higher risk of being overweight; an estimated 12-34% of children and adolescents skip breakfast regularly.
- Breakfast skippers tend to eat more at the next meal or snack on high-calorie snacks (which tend to be unhealthy).
- Prolonged fasting can increase your body’s insulin response, which, in turn increases fat storage and weight gain.
Here are some healthy breakfast ideas, old and new, to get you started:
- Fruit Smoothies
- Non-Fat Yogurt with fresh fruit and granola
- Whole Grain Toast with almond butter, local honey and bananas
- Hot Whole Grain Cereals: Oatmeal, Millet, Buckwheat, Quinoa or Brown Rice topped with fresh fruit (bananas, blueberries) or dried fruits (apricots, raisins, cranberries), toasted nuts or seeds (walnuts, almonds, sunflower seeds), agave nectar and cinnamon
- Whole Grain Pancakes (try Trader Joe’s Multigrain Baking and Pancake Mix or Bob’s Red Mill 10 Grain Pancake Mix), topped with fruit, toasted pecans and agave nectar
- Whole Grain French Toast topped with fruit, toasted almonds and agave nectar
- Whole Wheat Tortilla, topped with vegetarian refried beans and shredded cheese, melted, and rolled up; serve with salsa on the side
Here’s a recipe for:
Warm Red Quinoa with Fresh Berries and Toasted Pecans
adapted from 101 Cookbook’s Warm and Nutty Cinnamon Quinoa
1 cup nut milk (I like almond milk)
1 cup water
1 cup organic red quinoa (well rinsed to remove saponin coating)
2 cups fresh organic blackberries
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/8 teaspoon ground cardamon
1/3 cup toasted pecans
4 teaspoons organic agave nectar
Combine milk, water, and quinoa in a medium saucepan. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat to low, cover and simmer for 15 minutes. Turn off heat and let sit for 5 minutes. Stir in cinnamon and cardamon. Spoon into bowls, and top with blackberries and toasted pecans. Drizzle on agave nectar. Serve with more milk if desired. Serves 3-4.
Here’re some more healthy breakfast ideas:
Meg Wolff’s Anti-Cancer Breakfast (oatmeal recipe)
Lifescript’s 7 Eggless Breakfast Recipes
Spark Recipe’s Banana Oat Bran Muffins
Delish’s Whole Grain Pancakes
WebMD, Why Does Breakfast Help Control Weight
Mayoclinic, Why Breakfast is the Most Important Meal of the Day
Anticancer Ingredients: quinoa, blackberries, pecans