What’s for Breakfast?

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The morning opened up with midsummer on the horizon, a hot stretch of day hitching a ride with the sunrise on its way to heat up the Southland.

The window fan blew insistently in the kitchen grabbing the last few bits of cool coastal air from the predawn sky, Rocky relishing the breeze on his fuzzy canine belly. Even though his eyes were closed, I knew he waited for a simple word that would stand him instantly  on all fours.

“Breakfast! “

A confirmation of butt wagging and one sharp bark lead me to fill his bowl and watch as he pummeled through his food in 30 seconds, followed by a full minute of licking the bowl back to its bright, shiny state. You’d think it was pancakes au gratin topped with braised chicken livers covered in scrambled eggs drizzled with melted fat by the way he smacked his chops.

Of course the next phase of the morning ritual was on the way as I heard the chink-chink of the doggie door flapping open and close.

After I finished washing his bowl, I grabbed my pot and started on my meal of the morning. Breakfast has so many benefits to keeping the body in health that its importance should be duly noted and uploaded into everyone’s morning habit.

After hours of nightly repair, the body needs the energy to restart into its daily mode – especially the brain, which requires glucose to burn. Taking the time to eat before heading out into the world improves brain power and stabilizes energy throughout the day. Standing bleary eyed in front of a mirror pulling one self together is some all can handle in the morning.

I get it.

But let me suggest stocking a bowl full of bananas, plums, and peaches to readily grab on the way out, so at least the brain has something to fuel its cells and the morning drive to work can be handled with sharper reflexes. There are plenty of yogurts without tons of sugar on grocery store shelves to stock in the fridge so a quick getaway to work can leap into action with a healthy start.

The McBreakfast gobbled down does little to fuel the body but instead saturates the blood with fat and excess carbs that invariably go straight to storage (and I don’t mean in the trunk of your car).  A 13th century English breakfast consisted of rye bread with ale and cheese and/or boiled beef. I thought about that for a second and realized its nothing different from today, just coffee swapped for ale.

Yet we live in a time that has fruits and grains in abundance, so throwing chopped strawberries on top of a waffle makes for a much heartier meal.

Don’t have the time? How many of you stand in a long line at a coffee place to get that cup of joe? Stay home and flip a couple of jacks instead, or pour a landslide of whole grain goodness into a bowl.

Heart-healthy creamy steel cut oats take minutes to make and provide long-lasting energy for the day. Or try something new and keep your insulin happy with creamy buckwheat. It’s a fruit not a grain, and so perfect for a gluten-free breakfast to fill up on while keeping blood sugars in check.

As enticing as a bowl of frosted flakes can be, don’t be fooled by the “fortified” labeling, which really acknowledges the “food” starts out devoid of needed nutrients normally found in freshly made dishes.

My buckwheat pancakes now ready, a nutty aroma filling my kitchen with a warm and cozy smell, I sit down and lusciously pour syrup, the real maple sweetness from a tree, all over my yummy dish and top it with bananas, strawberries and pecans.

While contemplating my day ahead, I relish my healthy breakfast as the sky wakes up with sunshine and the world spins up another day.

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