I read an article today on the BBC website about skipping breakfasts which encourages people to opt for more calorie laden foods later in the day.

This is something I have been going on about for years! Breakfast is definitely one of the most important meals of the day: your blood sugar will be lower because you have effectively ‘fasted’ whilst sleeping. Eating a breakfast containing slow release carbohydrate and protein will help to stabilise blood sugar levels and keep you feeling fuller for longer, and therefore less likely to grab a fatty or sugary snack for a ‘pick-me-up’ later.

Ideal breakfasts include eggs, porridge made with milk or alternative, with added fruit. Sprinkling on nuts and seeds increase the amount of protein you will be having. However a sandwich with protein such as egg, ham or chicken on wholemeal bread is also fine.

Often clients complain that they do not have time to prepare a breakfast before leaving for work but it’s not so difficult to make a sandwich or wrap the night before to eat on the train.

Some people find they have no appetite first thing in the morning and this is often true of school children. However, it is essential to get children to have something before school otherwise they will not be able to get their brains into gear and concentrate on lessons. They do not need to eat a huge amount but if possible avoid too much sugar – often found in cereals aimed at children. Mini bagels or pittas are often popular or a yoghurt with fruit.

Here is my recipe for a super smoothie that I call ‘Breakfast in a glass’ – it contains all kinds of nutritious goodies and is great as a snack at any time of day. You can change the fruit or juice to suit your taste!

This is a great way of serving up a nutritious breakfast for those who are reluctant to eat, or as an after school snack.

What you need for 2 smoothies:

  • 1 glass of juice (orange, apple, grape etc) or milk, dairy or soya
  • Good handful of berries – raspberries, blueberries, blackberries etc (you can use fresh or frozen)
  • 1 small banana or half a large one
  • 1 tablespoon linseeds, pumpkin seeds and sunflower seeds ground together (optional) * (please do not use if allergies are present)
  • 1 tablespoon natural oatmeal or 1 tbsp natural porridge oats soaked in water overnight (optional)
  • 2 tablespoons of plain live yogurt (if you don’t have dairy then you could use a plain coconut yoghurt) – optional
  • 1 teaspoon omega 3 oil such as hemp or flax

What you do

Blend all the ingredients together in a liquidizer to make a delicious and filling smoothie.

About your smoothie

This really is packed with nutrients: vitamin C, zinc, vitamin E, Omega 3 & 6, fibre, calcium, protein and live beneficial bacteria (yogurt)! Adding oats to your smoothie will make it more filling and you will have the benefit of lots of B vitamins which are great for your hair and skin and adds fibre! The seeds and oil add beneficial oils which help dry skin and hair.

A pack of frozen mixed berries are useful to have in the freezer for this smoothie.

* grind together equal amounts of linseeds (flax – look for Linusit Gold in supermarkets), pumpkin and sunflower seeds. Keep in the fridge and use a tablespoon to add to smoothies, sprinkle on salads or porridge. They provide a good source of vegetarian omega 3 fatty acids – always add to food after cooking. Heating these seeds destroys the beneficial oils.

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