Fasting may improve the negative affects of aging…
They say breakfast is the most important meal of the day. But who are “they” and why do they say it?
Even more important: What are the best hot breakfast choices?
Breaking Your Fast
Breakfast is, literally, breaking our fast. Unless you sleep-eat, your body is in a fasting state from the time you go to bed until you awaken. We have learned slumber-time is a great time for repair. Repair is good for your health. So by avoiding food a few hours before you go to sleep you allow your body to go into repair mode (renewing cells and such) rather than spend that energy digesting your food.
Going one step further, when you choose to fast at least once per week there is some evidence to suggest this helps to slow down the aging process. Skip a meal or two to eliminate wrinkles? Hmmm….
For the holy among us, fasting is seen as a virtue. Thomas Aquinas believed that fasting “bridles the lusts of the flesh.” Although some may say fasting makes them want to eat their flesh because they feel hungry!
Aquinas’ theory is that when you abstain from food and drink on some regular basis, you give your will-power a workout. Practicing saying “no” to the little things allows you the strength to say “no” to the bigger temptations.
Would You Have a Hamburger for Breakfast?
How important is breakfast and why do most people eat what they eat? Have you ever thought of having a hamburger for breakfast? Why not?
Perhaps food manufacturers like Kellogg and Quaker believe breakfast is the most important meal of the day. After all, ready-to-eat cereals sales hover in the millions per year. Are they the “they” who tell us breakfast is the most important meal of the day?
The short answer: Yes!
Food historian Abigail Carroll, author of Three Squares: The Invention of the American Meal, discovered that a lot of our current eating habits and food choices were modeled and molded during the industrial revolution. As people moved from the farms to the cities and the type of work went from active to sedentary, dietary habits had to be adjusted. All that sitting was giving them indigestion.
This was supported by the observations in sanitariums by the likes of John Harvey Kellogg and Charles C. Post. This was a time of nation-builders, high stress, and low activity. People needed more vegetables and whole grains to keep all bodily systems running smoothly. They needed to move, and their food intake needed to be moved through the digestive system, in order to maintain health. What better way to efficiently accomplish this than a good hot bowls of oats, or porridge, or grape nuts.
Yet, unlike what most of us heard from our parents, not everyone needs to eat breakfast in the morning. Every individual body is different. Some people, including top athletes, have said they do not always eat breakfast. They actually prefer to exercise first, and then fuel up with a healthy meal after the workout is complete. That works for them.
In some fitness circles the debate goes round and round about whether you should eat before or after your run. Again, it’s a personal choice. What’s important is that you give your body enough fuel to accomplish what it needs to accomplish. It’s been my experience that my body will tell me when it’s time to eat. No clock necessary!
And what you eat is a choice as well.
What Are the Best Hot Breakfast Choices?
Personally, I’m just as likely to have hot cereal for dinner as I am to have it for breakfast. Especially on a cold night, it just tastes right! Eggs and toast? Absolutely!
Here is some Breakfast Eye Candy to get you started as you celebrate Hot Breakfast Month: