6 Best Carbs to Reach for in the Morning
We know breakfast is an important meal to kick start metabolism and give us energy for our day, but sometimes I have clients who avoid all carbs for breakfast in the hopes of having a better eating day.
In my experience, most of the time this back fires. The brain is looking for carbs to replenish the glycogen stores after a night of fasting, and skipping them in the morning can cause cycles of carb cravings throughout the entire day.
It's true that bagels and sweet muffins are not going to boost your health (or weight loss) goals, but there are many high carbohydrate foods that are worth choosing in the morning.
1) Sprouted Grains
If you love having toast with your eggs or with a spoonful of nut butter, opt for sprouted grain options like Ezekial bread. These bread products are much more nutrient dense and have more fiber and protein to keep you full longer. They are also easier to digest as the gluten is mostly destroyed in the sprouting process.
Oatmeal isn't going anywhere! It's most appealing on cold winter days, but overnight oats can be a great way to get in a cooler oatmeal breakfast too. Oats contain a lot of fiber to slow the metabolism of sugars and keep blood sugar steady. The more unprocessed the oat is, the higher protein it contains as well. For example, steel cut oats have 8 grams of protein per serving, more than an egg!
The banana gets a bad rap as a high sugar fruit, but first thing in the morning it provides easily accessible energy in the form of glucose and is perfect to fuel a morning workout. Bananas also increase bloat-fighting bacteria in the gut, and the high levels of potassium help to prevent cramping.
Like oats, quinoa can be made into a cereal, or it's great used in a salad topped with an egg. It has more protein than other grains and a much faster cooking time (15-20 minutes).
Beans are an excellent complex carbohydrate and are full of fiber. Mix up your breakfast choices with black bean tacos in a corn tortilla or use beans as a side with scrambled eggs.
All berries are very high in anti-oxidants. In addition, the polyphenols help to prevent fat from forming. There are also studies that believe the catechins may activate fat burning genes. Add blueberries or strawberries to oatmeal or Greek yogurt, or blend them up in a smoothie.
Choosing high quality carbohydrates can help with weight loss by keeping you full longer, boosting your energy and preventing cravings later in the day.
What are some of your favorite un-traditional breakfast combinations?
Do you reach for carbs in the morning, or typically avoid them?