Breakfast (or "break-fast" if you're using Intermittent Fasting) IS the most important meal of the day in the sense that it sets the TONE for the rest of the day. Starting your day off with a blood glucose spiking meal can lead to increased sugar cravings and a shut down of fat burning in the body all day long. On the flip side, a high quality, satiating meal can reduce hunger and prevent sugar cravings later in the day.
Today, I'm sharing 5 very common breakfasts that are likely not helping you achieve your weight loss goals AND swaps you can make for meals that are better suited for fat burning!
P.S. before you dive into these, it's important to have an understanding of how the body GAINS weight in the first place. You can head over HERE for a deep dive discussion.
This is a particularly sneaky one, as it's often touted as THE health food break-fast option (especially here in L.A.). And as for the avocado, that's a great source of high quality fats and fiber to keep you satiated and help the body tap into fat burning mechanisms. If you have it paired with some poached or scrambled eggs, you also get the protein to trigger the satiety hormone peptide YY and make you feel fuller longer. The problem comes in with the "toast" component. Regardless of if it's "whole wheat", sprouted, multi-grain, etc. - wheat containing breads have a relatively consistent HIGH glycemic index.(1) Although the glycemic index has some faults, it still is indicative of a higher release of insulin, which as we know shuts off lipolysis (aka fat burning) and shifts the body into storing mode. Exactly opposite of what we're looking for.
Instead, try ditching the toast for thinly sliced jicama or turnips for some break-fast style tacos, like those in Autumn's Nerdy Kitchen Cookbook, pictured above!
Oatmeal is relatively void of any of the satiating components needed to prevent hunger and keep the blood glucose levels stable (other than fiber, which really is fairly low at 4g per 1 cup serving). 1 cup of cooked oatmeal contains 24g of starches, 2g of fat and 6g of protein. The form of the oatmeal matters, too. For example, rolled oats are fairly middle of the road in terms of glycemic index, however quick oats are very high - equivalent, if not higher, to that of wheat bread.
Depending on how carbohydrate sensitive you are, steel cut or rolled oats may not be a problem for you, as long as you combine it with high quality sources of protein and fat to boost the satiety. (With oats being high in starches, small amounts are better later in the day as discussed with the AEN Nutrient Timing in the Complete Intermittent Fasting Bundle.) But if you find that you are still unable to lose weight while consuming oatmeal, you can experiment with a grain-free oatmeal such as the recipe in the 7 Day IF Detox (pictured above).
And by this, I mean JUST fruit smoothies. These are common at grab-n-go smoothie restaurants. Just fruit smoothies are LOADED with sugar - yes, it's a NATURAL sugar, but it's still an EXTREMELY high amount of sugar. Just to give you an example, I googled "healthy fruit smoothie recipe" and came across a very popular recipe website with a recipe that contains 1.5 cups of your favorite fruit (including options such as mango), a nut milk OR fruit juice base and add-ons such as honey (per serving). Assuming we only use 1 tsp. of honey, this total sugar intake can come in at around 68g of sugar per serving!!!
The recipe also included some sources of fat and protein, such as greek yogurt (which I'm a big fan of for a protein source in smoothies) and optional chia seeds (also a big fan for the fiber and fat content). But any of the benefits you would get from these protein and fat sources is completely negated by such a HIGH sugar content.
This doesn't mean you can't include fruit in your smoothies. In fact, I use fruit in nearly every single one of my smoothie recipes! But there ARE ways to help keep the sugar content lower. This includes utilizing lower sugar, higher fiber fruits such as raspberries, blackberries, strawberries and açaí and MINIMIZING high sugar fruits, such as mango. Plus, by swapping the fruit juice for unsweetened nut milk, you can reduce the sugar intake by a whole 16g (at 3/4 cup of fruit juice).
You can test out one of my favorite lower sugar fruit containing smoothies HERE.
Most pancake mixes use low quality, highly processed flours and sugar as the base. And as we learned with the Avocado Toast, bread and flour products are not lipolysis (fat burning) friendly foods. If you love pancakes, try swapping out the processed flour with almond or coconut flour as the base. You can even use some protein powder mixed into the coconut/almond flour to boost your protein intake. If you're less carbohydrate sensitive, you can even test out using a small amount of oat flour, as well. Any of these options can be used with the Superfood Pancakes from the Complete Intermittent Fasting Bundle, pictured above.
Eggs + Hashbrowns
Hashbrowns are typically made of white potatoes, which have a glycemic index that's on par with wheat flour. Growing up, I LOVED this savory break-fast combo of eggs and hash browns, so in order to make this more in line with wellness and weight loss goals, I swapped out the white potato for cauliflower rice! You can simply swap out the thinly sliced potato for riced cauliflower in your favorite hash brown recipe to get a meal that will help keep your blood glucose levels stable!
Start eating meals that turn ON fat burning mechanisms with the Complete Intermittent Fasting Bundle! Eat meals like the Superfood Pancakes, LA Street Tacos, Spicy Guacamole, PB + Chocolate Chip Cookies and MORE!
Head over HERE to get started!
Autumn Elle Nutrition