by Dr. Shelese Pratt ND @ Flatirons Naturopathic Clinic
Expanding on my last blog about establishing a healthy rhythm and optimal endocrine functioning, I’ll now focus on the nutritional piece of the three critical areas (nutrition, water and sleep) for a stronger and healthier you!
Most importantly, our bodies need protein and fiber. Protein is involved in virtually every cellular function and is critically important for energy, concentration, movement, balancing blood sugar and moods, detoxification, boosting the immune system, and building and maintaining muscles, organs, connective tissue, bones, skin and teeth. You can hardly name a body part for which protein is not of paramount importance for growth and development. Getting a healthy amount of protein in our system at breakfast and lunch is critical if you want to feel your best throughout the day.
Fiber is equally important. Fiber increases energy stores, boosts the immune system, manages blood sugar levels. Fiber helps lower cholesterol, blood pressure, and the risks of heart disease, diabetes, hypertension, obesity and numerous gastrointestinal diseases - all of which are affecting children at younger and younger ages.
Here are some easy ways to eat healthy fiber and lean protein for breakfast and lunch:
- Rotate between nitrate-free chicken or turkey sausage, bacon, eggs, and protein powders; try hemp, pea, rice or whey (if dairy is tolerated).
- Include protein powders in pancakes, waffles, and smoothie recipes. You can make ahead of time and freeze or refrigerate for quick access on school/work mornings.
- Include dark leafy greens such as Kale, Spinach, or Chard in smoothies.
- Encourage a diversity of whole grains such as whole oats, whole wheat, quinoa, buckwheat, amaranth, wild rice, spelt, kamut.
- Avoid high sugar, processed cereals, instant oatmeal, and many gluten-free products - kids can burn right through these foods as rapidly as 30 minutes and then have nothing left in the tank.
- Grab a handful of nuts or include a nut butter in your smoothie! Almonds, cashews, walnuts and sunflower and pumpkin seeds are all great choices.
- Try changing the concept of what you eat for breakfast and offer veggies, chicken breast, etc.
Try out a couple of my favorite breakfast recipes!
- Dr. Pratt’s oatmeal: 2 cups gluten free oats, 1 pear, 1 apple, 2 tbsp raisins, 1 tsp of coconut oil, 1 tbsp chia or flax seeds.
- Dr. Pratt’s morning smoothie: 4 pieces of kale, 1/3 cup mixed berries, 1/2 banana, 4 tbsp of hemp powder.
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