Sunday, July 8, 2007

Breakfast: How about a kick in the head?

I hate morning. I have a variety of complaints about it – first of all there is the whole waking up part. I hate that. Then there’s this whole expectation about being polite to other people who talk to me before I’ve had my shower. I hate that, too. And finally there is the whole issue of breakfast. I really, really hate that.

Breakfast in my world is a nutritional minefield populated by grain-based syrup delivery devices (waffles, pancakes, French toast, oatmeal) and egg-based foods that neither Theo nor I can tolerate. It seems like everyone under the sun agrees that breakfast is the most important meal of the day. Often this dictate is quickly followed by recommendations for the various sugar foods that instantly destroy any possible blood sugar balance for the day.

Fortunately thanks to the 20/20 program, my personal breakfast quandary has been resolved by the ubiquitous protein shake. Unfortunately the official 20/20 shakes themselves came with their own layer of angst. Specifically, soy protein isolate, which I think is really bad for our bodies. In hopes of finding a reasonable substitute, I sampled every single whey shake at Whole Foods, PCC and Seattle Super Supplements, pouring most of them out after the first sip. Mercifully, Heather jumped in to saved me with her own version.

In commiseration with everyone who hates morning as much as I do, I offer you the small relief of her quick, nutritious, delicious breakfast:

Breakfast V.07
2/3 Cup Lite Coconut Milk
1 Cup Frozen Blueberries
2.5 Oz. Orange Juice (or an additional 1/2 cup of blueberries)
1 Scoop (approx. 21 grams of Protein) of your favorite egg protein powder

Because I can never leave well enough alone, I change a few things.
- Rotate the frozen fruit
- Add 1 TBSP ground flax seed
- Skip the oj and add water instead
- Use whey powder instead of the egg powder. Because I’m going for the “whole food” experience here, I am mindful to get whole whey powder rather than whey protein isolate
- Add 1 tsp almond or vanilla extract
- Add 3-5 drops clear stevia liquid

Sunday mornings, however, still get to me. I have this internal desire for a special breakfast on Sunday mornings and have as long as I remember. Getting married provided a full time breakfast buddy, and I learned quickly that having pancakes or waffles first thing puts me into a horrible sugar coma for the rest of the day. That is when my feelings for breakfast changed from mild annoyance to true hate.

All the same, with Bill gone to Washington DC, this morning the kids and I concocted a eggless, gluten-free, pro-biotic laced waffle recipe. After carefully chipping them off the heart shaped waffle maker with our trusty wooden chop stick, I set the kids up with little mounds of waffle crumbs which they decorated with whipped cream, fresh berries and maple syrup. I happily (and smugly) sucked down my mango protein shake while the kids munched on their colorful mountains. Finally, the kids appetites satiated, they headed off to play. In a total moment of “how bad can it be” stupidity, I finished up the leftover waffle hills.

Five very short minutes later I felt like I’d been kicked in the head. The next few hours were spent taking very small steps and begging the kids to speak in quieter voices. Finally my brain took over and I slammed a large amount of protein and drank several quarts of water. The rest of the day has been mindfully spent eating carefully balanced meals and snacks with renewed resolve to stay loyal to my morning protein shakes.

Epilogue: our dinner tonight – Kraft macaroni and cheese. It will be good when Bill come home from the conference.