You wake up late because you had a horrible night’s sleep, so instead of taking the extra 3 minutes to have eggs or make a shake you quickly chug down a bowl of cereal or eat a bagel (same as cereal).
The box of cereal claimed that it was whole grain (as was the bagel) so you wrongly believe that it must be an okay choice. You grab your large cup of coffee with 2 milks and 2 sugars and head to the office.
What happens at 10:00am?
The familiar feeling of hunger sets in around mid-morning. You walk to the office kitchen to grab your fat-free, fruit flavored yogurt for 60 calories and take another cup of coffee.
By lunch all you can think about is either a burger with fries or a big plate of Thai noodles (you get the point).
Why? Have you ever stopped to think about why you crave what you crave?
Let’s work through the 3 reasons to ditch cereal once and for all. *Note the reference to cereal is a general example. Replace cereal with whatever processed carb you choose for breakfast (whole wheat toast, English muffin, breakfast bar, etc.)
Reason # 1: Cereal promotes fast carbohydrate metabolism
When we consume high impact carbs (cereals, whole wheat, processed carbs) without adding in a significant amount of protein or fat the carb is quickly digested into glucose.
When carbs digest quickly into glucose your pancreas is forced to secrete insulin (fat storing hormone). Since most of us are sedentary we don’t need the energy from the carb we just ate. Our muscle cells are full with glucose waiting to be used so insulin deposits the glucose (carbs) to your fat cells for later use (which we never use).
Reason # 2: Processed cereals increase food cravings
Using the logic listed in reason # 1 we can better understand cravings. When you choose fast digesting carbs your blood sugar levels increase quickly and drop quickly.
When your blood sugar levels drop your body sends you a craving to regulate them again. It’s a physiological response that is intense and hard to ignore.
Reason # 3: Cereals lack protein and fat
Starting your day with a breakfast high in protein and fat helps to regulate blood sugar and keep you satisfied. Protein supports your immune system and keeps energy levels stable. Fats are important for proper hormonal function and balance.
When your breakfast choices are made up of processed carbs such as muffins, refined breads, sugary cereals then you are setting yourself up for food cravings, energy lows and a day long battle with your will power.
Instead, check out 4 of my favourite breakfasts below to help balance those hormones and curb those cravings.
Breakfast # 1
2 whole eggs (scrambled)
2 handfuls of chopped kale or spinach (cooked with the eggs)
1 tsp of coconut oil or butter
1 slice of sprouted grain bread – I LOVE Silver Hills brand
¼ – ½ of an avocado mashed
1 cup berries (any kind)
- Preheat pan over medium heat, add 1 tsp of coconut oil.
- Whisk the 2 eggs in a bowl and add the 2 handfuls of green.
- Pour into the pan and scramble.
- Toast the bread and then top with the mashed avocado and scrambled eggs.
- Enjoy with the berries on the side.
Breakfast # 2
1 scoop of protein powder – I LOVE Genuine Health Fermented Greens Protein (if you don’t want to use protein powder, add ¼ cup hemp seeds)
1 cup unsweetened almond, cashew or coconut milk (add more if desired)
1 cup frozen berries
1 tbsp of chia seeds
½ tsp cinnamon
2 handfuls of spinach
- Blend and enjoy.
Breakfast # 3
½ cup steel cut or slow cooking oats (plain) (cooked)
¼ cup unsweetened almond, cashew or coconut milk (to mix with oats)
1 tbsp of chia seeds
1 tbsp of hemp seeds
1 scoop of protein powder (mixed into oats)
½ cup of berries
- Cook the oats as per the package instructions.
- Once cooked, protein powder (as per instructions below), almond milk, chia, hemp and berries. Enjoy!
Tip: How to mix protein powder into oatmeal
- Start with 2 tbsp of warm (not boiling) water or milk in a bowl.
- Pour a scoop of protein powder into the bowl and mix until smooth.
- If the consistency is too clumpy, add small amounts of water or milk until it mixes smooth.
- Once the oatmeal is cooked or warmed, add the warm protein mixture to the oatmeal.
- Stir until blended.
½ cup plain Greek yogurt (or coconut yogurt)
¼ cup granola (home-made is always best but if in a rush, I LOVE Nature’s Path granola)
3 Tbsp hemp seeds
1 Tbsp chia seeds
1 cup raspberries or blueberries
- Mix all the ingredients together and enjoy!
All of these choices can be partially or fully made ahead of time. They are quick and simple to make. Best of all when you eat breakfasts like the ones listed above you won’t experience intense food cravings, you will feel full, have more energy and be able to make better food choices throughout the day.