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Back to school breakfasts!

by Rachael Richardson, RDN

As a Registered Dietitian, I am not 100% convinced that breakfast is the most important meal of the day.  However, it does get your metabolism moving and your brain some glucose needed to think and get things going.  So what are you eating, and is it supporting your health goals?  I'm a foodie, and I don't recommend anything that doesn't pass my taste test!

So here are some suggestions for delicious, convenient, healthy breakfasts. 

The best thing to do first thing in the morning is lemon water.  It can be warm or cold, and could include a 1/2 tsp of maple syrup if it helps you drink it down. The lemon water is great for your kidneys, skin and brain.  Following this, you have some options, depending on what your mornings entail.  If this breakfast is for a school aged kid who won't eat again until lunch, it should be hearty and include some protein to stabilize the blood sugar and provide basic amino acids for the brain.  My favorite protein-rich kid-friendly breakfast is heavily egg-laden french toast with fruit.  If you think this is too hard to do, check out my French toast strawberry cream cheese gluten free sandwich. I use Trader Joe's gluten free bread, and it's exactly what it sounds like: 2 slices of french toast dipped and soaked in egg and cinnamon, cooked in Ghee.  Once finished cooking, I add a thin layer of cream cheese and as many sliced strawberries as possible.  It can get a little messy, but it's worth it.  

Other simple kid friendly breakfasts would be a breakfast burrito, with eggs, refried beans, possibly avocado, veggies (if you can sneak them in) and a little bit of cheese.  Just scramble the eggs in some olive oil or butter, smear refried beans on the wrap, and avocado, add the eggs and salsa if desired. Roll it up and saute for a few minutes on both sides. I use gluten free wraps; and again, if this breakfast needs to take you until noon, it's a true winner. 

For those of us who can luxuriate and stretch breakfast out, there's nothing I love more than fruit or a smoothie for breakfast.  I learned at a yoga certification program that in India (where Ayurverdic dietary principles are followed), we're healthiest if we don't eat solid foods in the morning until after eliminating yesterdays food.  For this reason, I tend to drink teas, coffee, fresh juices and smoothies throughout the morning, and until lunch.  Nothing too sweet.  My favorite is stawberries and watermelon. 

If you think it's extreme to not eat a large breakfast, think again. The 3-meal a day paradigm was designed for working in the fields.  We had to eat heavily in the morning, to sustain us until lunchtime.  We were picking, sowing, feeding livestock, harvesting, and more.  And for this a heavy breakfast was warranted.  Not so much anymore.  

A perfect morning health wise would be lemon water, coffee or tea with nut milk, fruit, and an egg or two if really hungry.  Sure, you can add salsa and avocado if you want to make it more complete.  But overall, we just don't need to eat as much as we're led to believe!  Questions?  Do not hesitate.  

Sending all of my best,

Rachael Richardson, Registered Dietitian/Nutritionist

"The Raw RD"

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