I am a healthy eater in general but not avowedly so. I don't beat myself up if I eat the occasional baguette, croissant or piece of chocolate. Regarding the latter, I'd have to beat myself up several times a week!
Now while I avoid 'white' foods in general, don't eat many fried foods and don't drink soda pop, I enjoy my coffee and wine, as well as a nice meal out once in a while. For me, there's nothing worse than heading out to dinner with folks and having someone pointing out the dangers of every morsel you put in your mouth and making you feel like you should get the death penalty for ordering dessert!
That aside, I'm a big believer in a healthy breakfast. It kick starts the metabolism, sets the tone for the day, and has the ability to really do our hearts good, if we let it.
I am a Bran Bud girl in general. Not the most lip-smacking of cereals but packs a massive fiber punch and is great for digestive health. For a break, I eat plain oatmeal, with about a half teaspoon of sugar, or else it's a bit wallpaper paste-ish to me, and I'm not a honey fan. A shake of cinnamon or apple sauce would do the trick too.
My kids eat oatmeal every morning too (but get pancakes on Sundays!) and I read somewhere recently that oatmeal may revv up the metabolism too much and cause children to get hungry again quickly, although there are also studies that say the opposite. If true, this is a bonus to me, my kids need the extra weight an extra snack might bring as a result so that was good news to my ears. And most people have found that oatmeal actually keeps them pretty full all morning, as well as being full of healthy qualities like soluble fiber and complex carbohydrates, not to mention vitamins and minerals. And nothing warms the belly better in order to face the winter mornings than a steaming bowl of oatmeal. Don't let the lack of sugar put you off. Using additives like cinnamon to flavor it is a perfect solution. A banana might work too, as would other fruits or even natural vanilla or organic maple syrup.
Some brands serve oatmeal already prepared with apples, or brown sugar. These do add in extra sugar, and while not fantastic (my kids like them) they are a lot better than the other cold cereals that contain nothing more than sugar and meal or corn, many with even more sugar on top, called 'frosting'.
So while we can't always guard what our kids' eat at school, starting them - and us - off with a decent, nutritious breakfast can keep them more alert, with better brain function, and a better shot at an healthy heart.
What do you eat for breakfast? Do your kids eat sugary cereals or have you tried oatmeal? Do you feel a difference when you've had a healthy breakfast, as opposed to a fried one, or one filled with sugar?
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