Breakfast of Yogi Champions
By Kaley Berg
As yogis, we work hard to take care of our bodies: everything from exercise to washing and grooming (well, some of us) to choosing the proper nutrition. When it comes to food, we all have our own preferences and routines – but if there is one routine that stands above all others … breakfast!
When we go to sleep at night, our body enters a state of fasting. I like to think of it like letting a campfire burn out to embers overnight. When we wake up, we might still have some simmering embers, but we need to throw another log on that fire to get our flames of energy alive and burning again. If we get a good fire going in the morning, each successive log we throw on (or meal we have) our body is able to burn that wood (or metabolize that food) more effectively.
Not only does breakfast provide energy for the day, it helps to keep blood sugars more regular – allowing us to avoid those sharp feelings of hunger between our daily meals. Breakfast foods, especially yogurt, milk, or fortified cereal also provide an excellent source of calcium – a mineral essential to bone health in which most of us, especially women, do not get enough of.
Breakfast is one of the best ways of obtaining our recommended daily intake of fiber. Fiber gets you moving in the morning – in more ways than one! Some great fibrous options are listed below. Say ‘good morning’ to your immune system with vitamin D, vitamin C, and iron – all of which are included in a balanced breakfast. It can be difficult for us to get an adequate amount of these essential nutrients into our diet otherwise.
So what should we be having for this magical meal? Incorporate whole grains for breakfast such as whole oats, whole grain cereal or granola; even quinoa. Cook the quinoa up and serve it like you would oatmeal: milk and brown sugar anyone?
If you go with a quick and easy cereal, look for one that has the highest fiber and protein content and lowest in sugar on the nutrition facts table. This is the kind that will stick with you longest – give the biggest bang to your breakfast. Add fruit – July is Blueberry Month, you decide. Finally, a dairy or a fortified alternative, will get you fuelled for any practice.
Happy crunching yogis – Namaste.
Kaley is a Yoga Advisor at Semperviva. She is majoring in Dietetics at UBC.