Wednesday, January 4, 2012
Confession....I eat the same thing for breakfast each day
For the past four years since my banding I eat the same foods for breakfast almost every day of the week. These foods include Greek yogurt and 1/2 cup of oatmeal (not pre packaged by the way) with dried cranberries or half of banana and a 1/2 tablespoon of walnuts with a hint of brown sugar and 8 ounces of skim milk. This is my go to breakfast. I have been eating it for so long that it is like second nature for me. Now some people may be thinking that is certainly a lot of calories or carbs. I have found this breakfast actually fuels my day, and I am less likely to be hungry before lunch. The added fiber from the oatmeal and fruit along with the healthy fat from the walnuts provides me with greater satiety so I stay fuller longer.
We all know the importance of eating a variety of foods to ensure that our bodies get the proper nutrients to heal, recover, fight off disease and help with our energy levels. But there is a new study out that says too much variety might actually be responsible for our weight gain.
There have been several studies alluding to the fact that too much variety in our food choices can actually lead to weight gain. The most recent study published this summer in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, showed that women who ate macaroni and cheese every day for a week were taking in 100 fewer calories each day than normal by the end of the week. The reason could be the lack of the variety made the women less interested in the food they were eating which caused the women to eat fewer calories.
While studies are important in helping us to understand the complexity of weight issues, I am cautious in following guidelines from studies, I believe we are "an experiment of one". That does not mean that I throw caution to the wind. There are proven principles that have been shown to work for the vast majority of us and those simply cannot be ignored.
So what does this mean for me?
Before beginning my band journey nearly five years ago this June, I was not one to eat breakfast on a consistent basis. I had learned that breakfast was the easiest meal for me to skip. Most of the time, I was not hungry when I would wake up, so I did not feel the need to "waste these calories". I mean why should I force myself to eat something when I was not hungry, when I was trying to get out of the house.
All of this changed for me in June of 2007 when I went to my first seminar for the band, and the following four months of nutrition classes. I listened and I did my own research on eating healthy, and I read accounts from people who had been successful at weight loss without surgery and how they had kept off the weight for years and years. One of the common threads that jumped out at me, was that skipping meals can actually cause us to gain weight. Learning why breakfast is the most important meal of the day, spurred me into action and to finally change my habits. I never skip breakfast, ever! Even if I only end up having a Greek yogurt.
Regardless of what you choose to eat, even if that meal is the same day in and day out, eating breakfast provides us with the energy to take on the day. For people with Lap Band this is even more important since we can only consume small portions, we need to make them count. Eating breakfast full of protein and good carbs helps to fire up our metabolism while helping with cravings later in the day. Not to mention that breakfast allows us to feel in control of being able to make healthy food choices and boost our mood, even if those foods are the same day in and day out.
Do you eat breakfast every day? Do you make it protein rich and nutrient packed? Do you fuel your fire? What uncommon breakfast food do you eat?