The alarm goes off and you’re up and rushing around preparing for another busy day. You might have kids to get ready for school, kinder or daycare, emails to read for a morning meeting, or a long list of jobs. In any case, by the time you get everything done in the morning you’re left feeling exhausted or overwhelmed. It’s no wonder so many busy mums like you end up skipping breakfast or just grabbing something from the shop when you’re out. Mornings can feel like a race that we’re constantly losing, so I understand the feeling that there’s no time to have breakfast. After all, when you’re scurrying around in a race against the clock, it seems impossible to find a moment to sit down for breakfast on top of everything else.
I’ve been there too. I have certainly felt your confusion and frustration. I’m sure your mother told you that breakfast was the most important meal of the day, but in case you need another reminder… it’s time to stop skipping breakfast! (Note: it is ok if your breakfast is at 10am, eat when you are hungry and able to calmly eat to maximise digestion and nutrient absorption.)
Breakfast provides many benefits to our health and well being
Eating breakfast helps improve concentration, memory and even helps boost your mood. Translation: it helps busy mums to feel less irritable and impatient with their kids and more able to meet the demands of life.
Research has shown that children who eat breakfast are more able to concentrate and learn. If it benefits them, it’s bound to do similar for us busy mums! Breakfast helps restore blood glucose levels, which helps improve concentration, memory and mood by supporting our brain to function.
Being hungry is a stressor to your body – it raises the stress hormones like cortisol and adrenaline. These can leave us feeling angry, irritable, weak and fatigued. It also means you are likely to make different choices than you’d make if you weren’t ravenous (or ‘hangry’). You probably wouldn’t grab that muffin full of refined sugar and flour if your brain wasn’t screaming at you to get food in your body – NOW!
If you think about it, your body has had no fuel since your evening meal. Breakfast is literally the meal that breaks the fast you have been on while sleeping. It gives your body fuel to kick-start your system and get your body ready for the busy day ahead. The morning is the perfect time to get in those important vitamins and nutrients your body needs to function through the day. Finding a simple, healthy breakfast that works for your schedule is quite easy, and we’re going to do that right now – so no more excuses for skipping breakfast.
A few of my favourite healthy and simple breakfast ideas
1. Fruit, nut and yogurt parfait
Start with a plain/Greek/natural yoghurt of your choice. (Organic is a must if you’re using cow’s milk-based yoghurt.) Simply layer up some yoghurt, nuts, coconut flakes, fruit, nut butter to create a delicious breakfast full of healthy fats, vitamins, and minerals. If you’re short on time in the morning, this can be made the night before and kept in an airtight container or jar in the fridge. You could even mix a tablespoon of cacao or protein powder in to the yoghurt to increase the protein value and keep you fuller for longer. I like collagen protein powders (I have a few in clinic) or Amazonia Raw Protein Isolate or Nutra Organics Clean Protein.
2. Seedy porridge or overnight oats
Make a batch of the seed mix and keep in the fridge to quickly turn in to a warm breakfast. The instructions are here. Or you can make it in to a chia pudding-type meal by mixing a portion of the uncooked seeds in to a cup of yoghurt or nut milk and soak overnight in the fridge in an airtight container or jar. Easy peasy and super tasty for busy mums or kids! Again, you can mix a tablespoon of cacao or protein powder in to the yoghurt to change the taste and boost the protein.
Don’t like chia seeds or parfaits? Choose a no added sugar, low fruit muesli or just plain old rolled oats and put a serve (1/2 cup) in to a cup of yoghurt. Soak overnight in the fridge in an airtight container or jar. If you’re using plain oats, you may like to add some fresh or frozen fruit or protein powder for flavour.
Just about everyone loves smoothies. (Except me, I don’t really love them!) I have shared my smoothie formula for success before on social media and will turn it in to a blog post shortly. In the meantime, to have a nutritious smoothies that is going to keep you satisfied and fueled up for hours, make sure your smoothie has fat and protein in it as well as fruits. Fats that work well in smoothies are avocado, nuts, seeds, nut butter, or coconut. Protein can be as simple as adding a serve of yoghurt or protein powder.
4. Make-ahead breakfast mini-muffins
When you have absolutely no time in the morning, prepare these ahead of time and even take them with you. Simply whisk some eggs, sliced spinach, other vegetables (like leftover roast veg) and a little grated cheese if you like. If you have left over roast vegetables to use up, chop these in to smaller cubes and put in to the bottom of the muffin holes before pouring the egg mix over the top. Push half a cherry tomato in to the top before baking these at 180 degrees Celsius (160 with fan) for 15-20 minutes. Cool before storing in the fridge (up to 5 days) or freezer.
5. Toast with avocado and an egg
This breakfast tastes great and can be made within a couple of minutes. The avocado is full of healthy fats, and the egg provides you with some protein you need to fuel your body well for the day. If you’re frying the egg, use ghee or grass fed butter to cook it in, and sautee some baby spinach leaves at the same time. There’s two vegetables in your day already! Choose an organic wholegrain rye sourdough loaf to maximise nutritional value and benefit for your gut bacteria.
If you don’t have any time to make eggs in the morning, boil a dozen eggs when you have time and store them in the fridge. Take some with you to eat when you have time to stop or when you feel hungry. Alternatively, peel and mash boiled eggs with some organic, whole egg mayonnaise and make a sandwich with alfalfa sprouts, baby spinach or rocket to enjoy for breakfast. Yum!
Keep it simple
The take home message is don’t over complicate it. That’s exactly what causes the feeling of overwhelm that holds you back from eating breakfast daily. Use the evenings when you may have some time while dinner is cooking or you’re making lunches for the day to prep your breakfast.
Too tired to know where to start? Or maybe you’re still not sure what to have for breakfast, lunch or dinner; what foods suit you and your body best for it to thrive? I love supporting women to master their chaotic mood swings, changing hormones and waistlines in their 40s, so they can feel calm, in control and make it to menopause without it ruining their lives. Invest 15-minutes in your health and make a time to have a discovery call with me. No obligation or cost, just an opportunity to talk about you and your biggest health struggles and see if you’re a good candidate for my program, ‘The Chaos to Calm Method‘. Find a time that suits you here.
I’d love to hear from you. So please tell me in the comments – do you generally skip breakfast? If you eat breakfast – what’s your fave?