Thursday, August 22, 2019
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Bringing Balance: Better Breakfasts

Ever heard the expression “Eat breakfast like a king, lunch like a prince, and dinner like a pauper”?  Itʼs actually pretty great advice, especially for school-aged kids.  Most kids leave the house early in the morning and donʼt return home until after 5 p.m. Thatʼs a long day, and while you likely do your best to pack a healthy lunch and snacks, the only meal you really have control over is breakfast. Start them off right!

Hereʼs what I recommend to my clients:  Every morning, make sure your family is eating at least one fruit or vegetable, and pairing a complex carbohydrate (whole grain) with some lean protein and a little healthy fat.  The good carbs provide long-lasting energy, the protein fills them up and gives their little bodies what they need to grow, and the healthy fat keeps their brains and cells healthy.

 

What does a healthy balanced breakfast look like?  Here are a few great ideas and a recipe to get you started!

• 1 egg with 1/4 cup of egg whites, scrambled on medium heat in a 1/2 tsp of olive oil, with a piece of whole grain toast and apple butter (natural fruit “jam” available in the natural food section of your local grocery store), and a sliced apple or peach;

• 1/2 cup of greek or other natural yogurt sprinkled with ground flax seed and wheat germ and blueberries or sliced strawberries, drizzled with honey or maple syrup to sweeten and topped with 1 tbsp chopped walnuts or almonds;

• whole grain, high-fibre cereal (dry or hot, like oatmeal) with skim milk or nut milk topped with half a sliced banana, with a handful of almonds on the side; or

• whole grain waffles with sliced fruit, a dollop of greek yogurt topped with real maple syrup (see recipe below).

Cinnamon Flax Waffles
Waffle irons are pretty inexpensive, and using a waffle iron is simple and quick.  I make a big batch of waffles most Saturdays and then freeze the leftovers, which I pull out on weekday mornings and defrost/reheat in the toaster.  I like to try new waffle recipes, but this one is my “old faithful”.  Itʼs kid & adult-tested, high-fibre and rich in B vitamins, as a result of its varied whole grains.  Whole wheat pastry flour is sometimes hard to find in the big grocery chain stores, so I buy mine in bulk at the local health food store.  All-
purpose flour makes these heavy, you really need the pastry flour for fluffiness. You can easily add berries or grated apple or pear to pump up the nutritional value even higher.

2 eggs, beaten
1 3/4 cups skim milk (or almond/soy milk)
1/4 cup olive oil
1/4 cup unsweetened applesauce
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1 cup whole wheat pastry flour
1/2 cup flax seed meal
1/4 cup wheat germ
1/4 cup all-purpose flour
4 teaspoons baking powder (use an aluminum-free brand)
1 tablespoon sugar
1/4 teaspoon salt

In a large bowl, whisk together the eggs, milk, oil, applesauce, and vanilla. Beat or whisk in whole wheat pastry flour, flax seed meal, wheat germ, all-purpose flour, baking powder, sugar, and salt until batter is smooth. Preheat a waffle iron. Pour batter into waffle iron in batches (1/2 cup each), and cook until crisp and golden brown.  Makes 7 or so big waffles. Freeze what you donʼt eat and pop in the toaster on busy mornings!

 

Wendy McCallum, LLB, RHN, is passionate about providing busy parents with the tools & support they need to feed their families wholesome food, so everyone can play, learn, and feel better!  She is a mother of two terrific HRM kids, aged 8 & 9.  For information and recipe ideas, visit her website.