Jen's Famous Breakfast Bread
April 5, 2016
A healthy and delicious breakfast is a great way to begin your day in a powerful way, but many people struggle to make the right choices. Between the misleading advertisements by food corporations and the speed at which the morning passes, breakfast seems to be one of the most complicated meals of the day!
Ah, marketing. Although I am not one to fight against things, instead preferring to focus on where my power IS, I do think it’s important to understand that the big 10 food companies are not your friend or mine. (See the image below to explain why out of the millions of food products you see, there are basically only 10 companies that own them all.) They are not here to help you be healthy. You are a consumer to them, nothing more. I know, the truth hurts but it also allows us to make an informed decision!
So where is your power? In your consumer dollars! Where you choose to spend your money, like a big box store or the farmer’s market, has a huge impact! According to the Virginia Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services, only 16 cents of each dollar spent on produce at the grocery store goes to the farmer. I know when I go to the farmer’s market, I hand all of it straight to my farmer. See a big difference there? YES! And that, my friends, is where your power lies!
The advertising that these big companies use, beginning with the very labeling of the products is incredibly misleading. When I talk to my clients or teach classes, one of the main things I want them to remember about processed food is that the front of the package, the part with pretty pictures of beautiful veggies or happy cows, or words like ‘Natural,’ ‘Healthy,’ or ‘Part of a Healthy Diet,’ are all advertisements. They are the fairy tale on the front of the package. The truth is on the back where you can read the list of ingredients and the nutrition facts.
The fairy tale is on the front. The truth is on the back.
Television ads that show famous actors, athletes, and healthy people are also very misleading. The next time you see an ad on tv for a fast food restaurant, look at the actors. Do they look healthy, fit and energetic? Of course they do! The next time you are at a fast food restaurant, look around. Do the folks eating that food look like the actors? Not even close! Commercials, magazine articles, internet marketing, it all has one goal: to make you a life-long consumer. And where is your power? It’you’re your hand because YOU control your purchases! YOU control every single bite of food that goes into your mouth! Empowering, isn’t it?
So now you have your consumer dollars going to the right place, and you are making great choices about which foods to eat but the problem of the rushed morning and lack of good ideas is still keeping your breakfast from being ideal. What’s the solution? Don’t worry, I’m full of ideas for you!
- Eat dinner for breakfast! Make extra dinner the night before or put a slower cooker recipe on to cook while you sleep. Who says you have to eat certain foods for breakfast? Imagine how incredible you would feel if you started your day with a hardy soup or a rice bowl. If it needs to be a breakfast food, how about some savory oatmeal? How about sweet potatoes and butternut squash cooked with dates, granny smith apples, cinnamon and nutmeg making your house smell amazing at 6 a.m. Put that slow cooker to work for you!
- Make it the night before. Overnight oats are super popular now and can be made a few days in advance. The varieties are endless and you could probably write a whole cook book about them! Or how about making five days of smoothie kits so that all you need to do in the morning is dump and press the smoothie button?
- At a minimum, have a plan. No one likes food prep, until they start enjoying the results! If you know what you plan to have for breakfast, and do some of the prep the night before, you will find that a lot of the stress vanishes and you end up with a great meal.
- Make it drinkable. Smoothies can be incredible meals when you add flax, chia, some good quality protein powder or yogurt, and leafy greens. Fruit smoothies are delicious but will not sustain you for very long. Make sure to add some hearty vegetables like sweet potato or butternut squash (Next time you have leftover, freeze it in ice cube trays and then simply add a cube to your smoothie!). To feel full, and know that you have already had greens, healthy vegetables, super foods and good protein is a fantastic way to start the day both physically and mentally. Talk about loving yourself! Wow!
- Start by drinking water. Many of my blood type O clients are not hungry first thing in the morning. That’s okay! Start with a few sips of water and listen for the first signs of hunger. Be prepared with a protein-heavy breakfast, some healthy fats and vegetables. A great breakfast for a blood type O is a vegetable omelet with salsa, leftover chicken thighs from dinner with spinach and sweet potato, or a combination of vegetarian protein sources like nut butters and seeds, with some colorful vegetables. Fruit is always an option but add it on to the protein-vegetable-fat combination. It doesn’t sustain an O the way it would an A or AB.
In my house, these tips work well for the most part. With three different blood types in my house, a B, an O and two AB’s, I really like to find foods that work for everyone. Breakfast Bread is one of those types of recipes. It’s gluten-free, vegetarian, has two vegetables, is sweetened by apple sauce and dates, and has eggs and almond flour for protein. In a word, it’s ideal for my family! I use it not only for breakfast but as a quick snack before or after I go to CrossFit. I package it in a grab-and-go way so that I am not tempted to get a bagel at Panera in a moment of hungry desperation. Instead I munch on a thick slice of my Breakfast Bread and calmly figure out my next meal. It has saved me numerous times. I usually make two loaves in the beginning of the week, and a third loaf on Thursday or Friday.
Now let’s talk cost. I often get complaints about the cost of the almond flour when I share this recipe. Yesterday at Costco, I bought a 3lb bag of almond flour for $18.00. Is it expensive? I used to think so but then I realized how much value I was getting from the bread from feeling better (no bloating or weight gain that I would experience from a similar recipe made with wheat flour), to how much money I was SAVING by not making those instant gratification purchases. In a single week, if I made only four $5 purchases because I was hungry, I would more than pay for this 3lb bag! I am also able to avoid the tempting simple carbs like donuts and muffins at business meetings because I am full and satisfied with my Breakfast Bread. Can you even measure the cost of that? Also, as a whole foods athlete, I want to give my body the protein it needs to heal and grow from workouts. This bread is a big part of that for me.