Q: If I don't eat high-carbohydrate foods like bread and muffins, bagels, cereal, and juice in the morning, what can I have for breakfast?
A: There are a great many breakfast options available for the carbohydrate addict that will not set off your hunger and cravings and that will help you stay on your program and keep your weight loss steady and permanent.
First, consider if you really want breakfast. Many people eat breakfast because they think they "should" have it and because they have been taught that a good breakfast will fuel them through the rest of the day. Just as no single eyeglass prescription is right for everyone, no eating prescription is right for everyone. Some people enjoy breakfast, others have no desire for it. If you do not really want breakfast, chances are your body does not need food in the morning. Very few people need food first thing in the morning to "fuel" them through the day. Since food takes several hours to clear the stomach and many more hours to be processed in the small intestine, it is the food you eat in the evening (the night before) that fuels you through the first part of your day. The food you eat in the morning does not get fully absorbed until late in the afternoon or into the evening. So, if you don't want breakfast, skip it - or have just a cup of coffee or tea (without artificial sweetener*).
Second, if you would like breakfast, explore these low-carbo breakfast suggestions:
- Egg variations: Omelets are great low-carbo breakfast choices. You can enjoy cheese, mushroom, and green pepper omelets to name a few. You may choose egg-white omelets if your doctor recommends that you choose a low-fat variation of the Program (do not use egg substitutes that add high carbo fillers). Devilled eggs can be fun and easy to prepare the night before and eat on the run.
- Other typical breakfast foods: Sausage (regular or turkey) that contain no msg or fillers (such as Jones' Breakfast Links) or home-made low-fat sausage can be delicious and satisfying and poached or smoked salmon can be quite flavorful. Add celery stuffed with cream cheese to the fish for a special treat along with cool cucumber slices and you have a more exotic and refreshing breakfast.
- Special breakfast treats: See our special Spicy Breakfast Quiche on our recipe page at http://www.carbohydrateaddicts.com/carecipe.html You can make it up the night before and grab it on the run. It's delicious. And, best of all, you can enjoy any of your typical "lunch" or "brunch" low-carbo foods at breakfast - the choices are as vast as your imagination: Lettuce rolls with last nights roast beef, tuna and egg salad stuffed in celery or rolled in lettuce leaves, steak and eggs or turkey burgers. Or chicken salad, cool and crispy.
Bagel and Cereal Yearnings:
- Carbohydrate cravings can sneak up and grab you in the most unexpected places. Our minds tell us that we really miss those breakfast carbos and we find ourselves turned off to low-carbo breakfasts. How many times can you face eggs (or egg substitutes), we ask. We ask you to see this sly voice for what it is - the convincing voice of our addiction, telling us to go back to the carbs. For those who are tired of low-carb breakfasts we ask, how is it we never seemed to tire of that same bagel or cereal day after day. If low-carb breakfasts are losing their appeal you basically have three choices: 1) skip breakfast - or wait until 11:00 am or so to enjoy a low-carb brunch, 2) make your low-carb breakfast more interesting by considering some of the low-carbo suggestions above, or 3) make breakfast your Reward Meal and enjoy your carbs at this meal only. In most cases, morning bagel cravings are a passing problem, a subtle attempt by your body to get you back to the carbos. Take some time to make breakfast more enjoyable and explore new low-carbo choices or , if you prefer, skip breakfast altogether. Just don't give in to the voices in your head that would have you return to old habits. Soon this way of eating will become second nature and your success, freedom from cravings, and weight loss, will be yours for life.
Soy Flour-Based Breads, Pancakes, and Muffins
Inearlier books, in particular, The Carbohydrate Addict's Diet, some breakfast choices included heavily soy flour-based recipes. At the time these recipes seemed to present no problem but in the eight years since its printings, and with the feedback from the over one and one-half million people who have purchased our books on carbohydrate addiction, we have discovered that many carbohydrate addicts can be triggered by soy flour-based breads, pancakes, muffins, and the like. We now have minimized the use of soy-flour in breakfast recipes. We no longer recommend more than one or two tablespoons of soy flour as an ingredient in any breakfast recipe and strongly discourage the use of artificial sweetener as well, which for many carbohydrate addicts, can also trigger cravings and slow or stop weight loss.
- We strongly encourage those on our programs to avoid "protein powders" and other strangely concocted, patented, or manufactured products. On our programs, you will do best when sticking to "real foods" . Avoid drinks, mixes, and the like that contain ingredients that are not found in nature - your body was not meant to handle the latest chemical mix from the lab. For a discussion on "protein powders" see http://carbohydrateaddicts.com/propow.html
Low-Blood Sugar and Breakfast:
- Many carbohydrate addicts report that before they discovered the Carbohydrate Addict's Programs they became hungry by 11:00 am. Some reported they felt tired and/or irritable by this time as well. It has been our experience and that of thousands and thousands of others, that the carbohydrates in that breakfast (bread, bagels, muffins, cereal and juice or fruit) set off blood sugar swings in carbohydrate sensitive people and typical high-carbo breakfast foods bring about this hypoglycemic (low blood sugar) response. When carbohydrate-rich foods are no longer part of the breakfast menu, blood sugar swings and the hunger, weakness, headache, and irritability that can result, often disappear - usually in a matter of days. As always, check with your physician to rule out other causes of low-blood sugar.
*for more information on the impact of artificial sweeteners or sugar substitutes, see http://www.carbohydrateaddicts.com/nonsgr.html