Disclaimer: Always seek the advice of your physician before starting or altering any exercise or dietary plan.
When a Calorie is not equal to a Calorie
So, what does that mean?
If you are eating a chocolate bar and its 9 small squares (½ of a 100g bar approx.) and 180 calories. That doesn’t seem too bad, right? WRONG. They are empty calories made up of mostly refined sugar. You might feel full for a very short period of time, maybe even a bit of an energy rush but you have given your body absolutely nothing of value to work with, all you did was fill a hole, that will very soon be hungry again!
If you instead had a large banana (approx. 8-9 inches) you would consume about 121 calories. You, however, would have fed your body with great nutrition, fibre, potassium, protein and you will stay full longer.
Why? Because it has fiber in it. Fiber takes longer to digest therefore you stay full longer and your blood sugar doesn’t skyrocket then fall leaving you with the crashed feeling. When food is natural, and healthy it takes longer for the body to process therefore your blood sugar may still go up, but it will go much slower, and it will also come down that way too. Much better scenario for your pancreas and liver!
It really all comes down to the choices we make, we can have a bowl of cereal, remember a serving size is usually about ¾ cup (that wouldn’t hold me long). So, we are more likely to have 1 ½ cups of cereal with milk. We are using Apple Cinnamon Cheerios for our example. That would mean approx. 360 calories with 20 grams of sugar! That is 5 teaspoons of sugar. And only 4 grams of fiber, and 4 grams of protein. You might feel full for a little while, your pancreas and liver are going to be working hard to process what you just ate.
OR you can Exchange that bowl of cereal for a wonderful smoothie, fresh fruit or overnight oats.
Here is an example of a few of my breakfasts:
1 small banana
1 small apple
1 small orange
¾ c almond milk
¾ c Greek yogurt (Plain)
Handful of Spinach
You have the option of replacing the Greek yogurt with a plant based protein powder that will give you even more protein.
You are going to consume about 3 cups (The recipe makes about 4 cups but I will explain what I do with the other cup)
Protein: 15 grams
Fiber: 8 grams
Sugars: 26 g (all natural sources)
Yes, the sugar is higher but it is from natural sources, not refined.
You are getting all that protein that will keep you satisfied much longer. Your fiber is also doubled.
With the 1 cup that took out, I make Overnight oats! Breakfast is done for 2 days! Woohoo! It’s like healthy drive thru.
In a pint jar
1/3 cup oatmeal
2 tablespoons ground flaxseed
1 cup of the above smoothie
Shake well and let sit in the fridge until morning. You can warm this up if you choose.
Protein: 12 Grams
Fiber: 8 grams
Sugars: 8 grams
I love the time I save making two breakfasts at once. You can even double the smoothie recipe, put one serving in the fridge for the next day and make 2 of the overnight oats. Use one or the other for a snack at some point thru your day or share it with your spouse.
Watch for other upcoming recipes for smoothies and overnight oats coming soon. They are a staple food in our house.
Play with your own ingredients, maybe you don’t like apple in it, so you add mango, or maybe you’re lucky enough to live somewhere where beautiful fresh fruit grows and have a buffet it your own back yard! If you are, I envy you! We aren’t that lucky here, our growing season isn’t long enough and our winters are too cold for fruit.
Just make sure you watch what you are putting in your smoothie or overnight oats. Keep your ingredients fresh, no added sugars. You can add cocoa (Tastes great with banana) but not chocolate chips or that chocolate hazelnut spread. Read the ingredients, watch the sugar, keep them as natural as you possibly can.
I’d love to hear what your favourite breakfast smoothie is! Send us a comment or visit our Facebook group to share your recipe and see other people’s recipes at www.facebook.com/groups/971130139764831/
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