The importance of having a good breakfast cannot be overstated, but a new survey shows about half of all families skip breakfasts together, even on the weekends. The right morning foods can do so much for you. Breakfast stabilizes morning blood sugar drops, provides sustainable energy, improves concentration and work or academic performance. Studies show that people who skip breakfast are actually more likely to have weight problems than those who don’t skip it. They also have slower reaction times and are more accident-prone. Children who skip breakfast experience have even more problems! They experience more hyperactivity, irritability, are tardy more often and create more classroom disruptions than kids who don’t.
Incorporating Healing Herbs into Your Breakfast
Oatmeal: A very traditional herbal breakfast food. Oats are rich in calcium and magnesium for nervous system balance, and very high in fiber for healthy digestion. Top with roasted nuts for extra protein and a little honey or cinnamon. Serve with fresh or dried fruit and or yogurt for a healthy breakfast meal. Sometimes tolerated by gluten sensitive persons. ( In its natural form, oats are a gluten-free food, but today they are sometimes cross contaminated with wheat in the manufacturing process.)
Slippery elm gruel: When digestion is weak, a slippery elm gruel is often tolerated when no other foods are. Buy in bulk and heat with a little warm water on the stovetop as you would oatmeal. Slippery elm is incredible rich in mucilagenous fiber which soothes and heals an irritated digestive tract. It’s a good choice for recovery from stomach flu or other digestive disorders like Irritable Bowel Syndrome. Add a little ghee (clarified butter) or coconut oil for healthy fats. Gluten-free.
Quinoa: A good source of complete protein, fiber, essential fats and complex carbohydrates, quinoa may be one of the most neglected breakfast grains. Top with almond or rice milk and blueberries, sliced apples or raisins for tasty herbal breakfast. Gluten-free.
Healing herbal soup: Soup for breakfast? Why not? Soup is a great place to add antibacterial herbs like onion or garlic, circulation stimulating spices like ginger or cayenne, and medicinal mushrooms like maitake, shiitake or tremella. I use a miso base, but fish stock will also work well. A herbal breakfast soup is especially good for an immune boost in the wintertime or during a bout with a cold or flu. Add a piece of licorice or burdock root, or astragalus bark for extra immune benefits.
A healthy breakfast drink can be so much more than simple refreshment. If the body is weakened by illness or chemotherapy treatments, healing drinks are sometimes the only way for the body to take in nutrition. Drinks are also wonderful places to add whole herbs like ginger, cinnamon, aloe vera, or bitter herbs like gentian that help your body heal faster. In energetic systems of medicine like Traditional Chinese Medicine, how you take a drink is important. Cold drinks help your body cool down and relieve “heat” imbalances like fever, herpes infections and acne. Hot drinks warm you up and reduce “cold” imbalances like diarrhea, fatigue syndromes and severe menstrual cramps.
Sarah Abernathy has been a researcher, writer and herbal consultant in the field of natural health for over 12 years.
She is the managing editor of Healthy Healing Publications, and contributes regular articles to newsletters, magazines, and books. Sarah is a graduate of the East West School of Herbology.
Latest posts by Sarah Abernathy (see all)
- Preventing osteoporosis by protecting your bones - October 14, 2009
- Top 4 tips for drug-free depression relief - October 7, 2009
- Herbs to overcome anxiety disorders and panic attacks naturally - September 14, 2009