Over the holiday I bumped into a old acquaintance and I was shocked to see how old he had become in the few short years since I last saw him. Not only had he put on a lot of weight, but he was not taking care of his appearance and was complaining about lots of new aches and pains. Listening to many New Years resolutions over the last few days made me wonder how many of us will be saying exactly the same thing this time next year.
The decisions we make about our health now will determine how we look and feel in five or ten years time. Sometimes it is simply too much to change our smoking, eating and drinking habits as well is going to the gym three or four times a week all in a short space of time. When we have advertised our weight loss and fitness assessment programs and health and nutrition talks (videos here) they have only been modestly attended. It’s obvious that many of us want to make changes to our habits and lifestyle but are put off from the sheer enormity of the task. If this describes you, then I have a suggestion.
Change what you eat for breakfast
Sometimes big changes are too much but little change is relatively easy. Changing what you eat for breakfast is quite straightforward and can have a great impact on how you feel, your energy levels and your waistline. Little changes are one way to start make big ones say the scientists (more here)
Many breakfast foods are very rich in sugary carbohydrates which have a high glycaemic index (GI). High GI foods only give you a short-term energy boost at the cost of feeling hungry mid-morning. If you can’t make it to lunchtime without a snack, then chances are you’re eating the wrong thing for breakfast. Not only do these foods sap your energy but are often very low in essential nutrients and contribute to weight gain. Typical breakfast cereals are often the worst culprits with white toast or croissant not much better.
The two main food groups that are great for breakfast are complex carbohydrates, such as porridge, and protein-based foods such as cheese, eggs, fish and meat. These food groups release their energy slowly throughout the morning keeping you going until lunchtime. They are packed full of essential nutrients especially if they haven’t been factory processed.
If you choose porridge then try sweetening it with lower GI sweeteners such as maple syrup, stevia or xylitol. All are better for you than heavily refined sugar (sucrose). If you choose cheese, meat or eggs don’t be overly concerned about cholesterol as dietary input to raised cholesterol is minimal in spite of what were often told.
When you have made these changes to breakfast you might like to pick another change to make. Alternatively you might like to save it until next year.
For more information go to an excellent book by Gary Taubes called Why We Get Fat. This book is available at Sundial.