It's Time to Rethink Breakfast
Breakfast: It's the favourite meal of many North Americans. But what happens when you tell people to ditch the dairy and say goodbye to gluten? It's unfathomable! No toast and butter, no milk and cereal, no waffles with whipped cream, no yogurt and granola... no breakfast!
A year ago I was right where you might be--wondering what the heck are you supposed to eat for breakfast then?! Breakfast foods ARE wheat and dairy, aren't they?
Boy was I wrong! It's actually a bit funny now. But our brains are interesting that way; as soon as we think "I can't have that" we suddenly become blind to every other possibility. We can only focus on that thing we cannot have!
Look at what breakfast actually means: to break the fast. Doesn't it make sense to break your fast with food that packs a nutritional punch?! Most people agree now that it's the most important meal of the day, but how can you properly fuel your body for the day if you don't feed it the nutrition that it needs?
I am a pretty boring breakfast person these days, as you can read in this post, but I enjoy what I eat every day and it fuels me well. I get protein and fat, and some vegetables. That's what my body needs. Your body might need an extra boost of carbs in the morning or a bit more fat, but the point is to choose foods that work for your body and energy needs. No matter what, include some protein and some vegetables and you'll be off to a fantastic start!
So, whether you're feeling like you shouldn't be eating dairy and gluten, but find cutting them out to be too stressful or if you're just in a breakfast rut...
It's time to rethink breakfast and give one of these ideas a try:
- Leftovers of any kind... seriously! Who says you can't eat leftover Chicken Bacon Alfredo for breakfast? Or what about some leftover roasted carrots and chicken? You can even eat soup! If you stop believing that breakfast has to be a certain type of food, then the possibilities are endless!
- Proteins are super important to include in your breakfast, and meat is a great way to do that. Some of them are still your typical breakfast fare, and some are not (just make sure you're getting pastured/grass-fed/additive-free meats): bacon, sausages, deli meat, chicken, beef, etc. All of those proteins can be eaten on their own or chopped up and added to eggs and/or veggies.
- In addition to meat, pastured eggs should make a regular appearance on your breakfast plate as long as you can tolerate them! If you need to save time, you can cook them ahead of time by hardboiling them or making a frittata. Or you can cook them in the morning by frying, poaching, scrambling, etc. They are so versatile and go great with meats and vegetables! Omelettes are one of my favourite ways to add more vegetables to my breakfast.
- Make dairy-free and gluten-free versions of your breakfast favourites: waffles, pancakes, bread, muffins, etc. Just remember that they should be a tasty sidedish on your breakfast plate, not the full meal.
- Full-fat coconut milk makes great smoothies, chia pudding, and even yogurt. I love the boost of energy I get from eating fat, and I will often have one of those options to give me extra energy in the afternoon.
I can tell you first-hand that eating a nutritious breakfast makes me a better person. When I am fueling my body well for the day I don't experience those blood sugar swings that make me a hangry mother and starving lunatic by mid-morning. Plus, I don't spend the day looking like I'm six months pregnant because of breakfast bloating.
When you rethink breakfast and start seeing it as an opportunity to fuel your body and start your day off well, you can change your whole day. All it takes is a willingness to step outside of the box.