Friday, November 4, 2011

Breakfast Parfait To Keep My Fire Burning!

As a child I never went a day without breakfast, which is why as an adult the idea of skipping breakfast is just crazy to me. The reasons to eat breakfast are endless, but here are some of the main reasons to eat breakfast according to the latest issue of Today's Dietitian Magazine;

  • It kicks starts your metabolism. Think of your metabolism as a fire. It can't keep burning unless you feed it fuel! If you don't feed it fuel for several hours, it starts to die and that's just not good.
  • Breakfast eaters are more likely to have a BMI under 25 (According to the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey)
  • There is a lot of research that shows a positive relationship between between eating breakfast and having a healthier nutritional intake throughout the day.
  • Some research shows that breakfast eaters are less prone to overeating at night.
  • Breakfast is the perfect opportunity to add a good amount of fiber, and hopefully one or two servings of fruits/vegetables into your diet.
  • Some studies show that eating breakfast may enhance memory and increase attention span.
  • Research has shown that eating breakfast, especially one that contains carbohydrates, can improve your mood.
  • Especially important for women who are pregnant or thinking of becoming pregnant, breakfast can be a great way to get the recommended amount of calcium and folic acid (for pregnant women the recommendations are 1000 mg calcium/day and 600 mcg folic acid/day).
  • If you are pregnant a prolonged fast can result in slow growth of the baby and maybe even preterm labor. Eat breakfast!

Many people think that breakfast has to be large. I had a client once tell me that she doesn't eat breakfast, but that she has a piece of toast with peanut butter every morning. Ummm....that's breakfast! It doesn't need to be a giant meal, it just needs to be something. I have other clients who say they "don't have time" for breakfast, and then a light goes on when I tell them they can have a banana, an apple, a yogurt, and/or a granola bar (on-the- go food!) and that would be perfectly sufficient.

The best breakfast is one that includes;

  • A whole grain
  • Some calcium
  • One or two servings of fruits and vegetables
I go through breakfast fazes. This summer I loved using fresh strawberries in my breakfast.

Last year I was on an oatmeal + almond butter + sweet potato + yogurt kick.....all year.

Here is my favorite breakfast, as of now; A Fruit and Yogurt Parfait!

Two layers of pumpkin, blueberries, plain Greek yogurt, granola, and unsweetened cocoa.

Question: Do you go through breakfast phases? What's your favorite breakfast (currently)? Does your breakfast change during the weekend?

Have a great weekend everyone!


  1. I love the almond butter sweet potato combo!!! YES...totally go through phases! Right now a rotation of vanilla whey, blueberries, spinach and spiralina smoothie (very dietitiany!) or oatmeal, toasted walnuts, chia and vanilla whey. About once a week I will have 1/2 grapefruit, cottage cheese and almonds. Your pics are BEAUTIFUL!!!

  2. Yummy breakfast! Yep, I go through breakfast phases, though they tend to be pretty short. I'll either have oats (hot or overnight), a yogurt bowl, a microwave protein cake, cereal/granola or a smoothie. Smoothies aren't happening lately though. Too cold!

  3. I love breakfast!!! Is without a doubt my favorite meal of the day. If I start off with a healthy meal I usually do have a greater chance of keeping it healthy for the rest of the days. I agree on the "cliche" that is the most important meal of the day. Great post! The parfait looks delish. Im considering adding "todays dietitian" to my endless list of magazine subscriptions lol :) Have a good day!

  4. I LOVE breakfast. I hate the mornings where I don't wake up hungry because of too many late night snacks. It's great to start the day off with something energizing. This morning I went with pasta...a new one for me, but got to keep things interesting!

  5. This fruit and yogurt parfait looks incredible, and like a great way to fuel up! I also like how breakfasts like parfaits are often versatile, so that people can change up the ingredients and not get too bored with breakfast.

    I find that not eating breakfast is one of the most common things that patients and clients do that they're ashamed of. They'll say something like: "Oh, I know I should be eating breakfast, but I don't because ____" Depending on the person, sometimes he or she will eat breakfast if they have lunch or dinner for breakfast instead of typical breakfast foods! I knew someone who would have rice and chicken and veggies for breakfast and loved it, even though she wouldn't touch breakfast before. Strange but true!

    Have a great weekend, Gina!

  6. I LOVE eating breakfast...I've never understood those people who don't eat it!!! Any opportunity to eat is good with me :-)

  7. I'm actually much more focused and productive (and likely to eat healthier throughout the day) if I skip breakfast and just stay hydrated--doing intermittent fasting (not eating till afternoon) has led me to read a lot of substantiated resources and stories of people who thrive on skipping the am meal. All I take this as is that different people thrive most under different conditions! I can say that most of my clients are benefitted by starting the day with a healthy meal, and I think it's the best general advice to give to people.

  8. omg i'm in a totaly breakfast lazy phase now. i don't feel like making oatmeal at night so i'm on an egg white quinoa apple & peanut butter kick haha. just throw shit in a bowl and spoon it into my face. i wiiiiiiiiiish my stomach didn't hate yogurt bc i'd be eating parfaits EVERY dayyy

  9. pumpkin is a fruit- double fruit and yogurt parfait!! That looks fantastic Gina!!!! I love all the important tips for eating breakfast- it is so true and the one thing I have always stuck to eating! You write so well. :)

    WHY a whole grain and some calcium... best...?

    Grain for complex carbohydrate- energy- makes sense BUT fat is more energy dense- so why not fat? or- protein can induce satiety so why not protein?... and why calcium in the am?? Is our absorption better ?

    :) Just curious.

  10. Your breakfast sounds SO delish!! I absolutely go through breakfast phases... :-) My current one is a bit of Original FiberOne cereal, a bit of KashiGoLean cereal, plain fat free Greek yogurt, and frozen blueberries, all stirred together until the blueberries turn everything blue... :-) Previously (all last winter, and likely soon to be revisited... :-) it was steel cut oats cooked with lots of cinnamon, with plain Kefir poured over top! :-)

  11. Breakfast is my favorite meal of the day. Personally I couldn't ever skip any meal, but definitely not breakfast! I definitely go through phases with my breakfast. I'm hoping to get back on an oatmeal kick right now since the weather is getting colder :)

  12. When I was young, I had a really hard time eating breakfast. But these days, I know I can't function without breakfast.

    I think we ate pretty much identical breakfasts lasts year! For the past few months, I love brown rice with an over-easy egg on top. I still eat a fair amount of oatmeal, but just not every day anymore...

  13. Totally agree, something is better than nothing. Most of my breakfasts do not have a great: lots of smoothies in the summer/ eggs in the winter. On weekends I'm more likely to do something a little more time consuming. "Don't have the time" bugs me.

  14. OH
    My daughter would looooove this.

    Thank you ;)

  15. I'm a new reader enjoying your blog. I absolutely go through breakfast phases. Recently I have been on a cold oats kick - a mixture of 1/3 c. whole rolled oats, 2T oat bran, 1T ground flaxseed, unsweetened almond milk and raisins or dates. Before that I was an egg girl, and before that - summer time smoothies! Who knows what's next