Yes, You Should Be Eating Greens For Breakfast!
Who says you can’t have salad for breakfast? While staying at a friend’s house recently, I woke up to a classic breakfast feast of pancakes, bagels, cereal — pretty much everything you can think of in the way of tasty breakfast foods. Though I praised my host for her beautiful spread, I boldly headed to the fridge to dig out some leftover kale sauté from dinner the night before. As I sat down to munch, I was greeted with raised eyebrows all around the breakfast table.
Yes, I admit it, I’m a greens addict! Though lovers of classic American breakfasts may find green breakfasts bizarre, I simply can’t start my day any other way. I also confess that I used to eat toast and jam for breakfast every single day. I fueled my body with sugar and carbs at sunrise and consequently craved sugar and carbs well beyond sunset. Rethinking my breakfast has been one of the most challenging and most powerful shifts in my nutritional life.
But beware! Those who start the day with greens may experience higher energy, improved mental clarity, reduction in crazy food cravings, loss of pesky pounds and more. I’m thrilled to have discovered that a carefully concocted breakfast of dark leafy greens can offer your body a spectrum of quality nutrition, complex carbs, healthy fats and protein. Starting the day with greens will not only keep you satisfied for many hours, it will also gently cleanse your body and set a fresh, healthy tone for your day... and your life as whole!
Are you ready to boldly change the color of your breakfast? Don’t let those raised eyebrows stop you from enjoying the benefits of an amazingly nutritious breakfast! Here are my favorite leafy green ways to start the day.
1. Get creative with green salads!
Start with a bed of organic mixed field greens or spinach and go from there! Add your favorite colorful veggies (red pepper, carrots, purple cabbage, sprouts, etc). Then toss in some healthy fats such as avocado, nuts, seeds (chia, hemp and pumpkin are my favorites). If your body needs more protein in the morning, try adding eggs, chicken or beans. Top it all off with a homemade dressing of olive oil, apple cider vinegar and herbs, or use your favorite all-natural dressing.
2. Want something warm and hearty to start the day?
Whip up some kale sautéed in coconut oil, and add on from there. Depending on your body’s needs for the day, you might want to add hemp seeds, pumpkin seeds, eggs or avocado. If you're craving something sweet for breakfast try adding in some roasted sweet potatoes or beets. Yum!
3. Green smoothie goodness!
You've probably heard that green smoothies are an excellent way to treat your body to a nice dose of greens. For those of you who struggle with the taste of greens, or if you fear raised eyebrows at the breakfast table, green smoothies are a great option. As with salads, I encourage you to get creative and blend up a well-balanced green smoothie that suits your needs of the day. Start with your greens of choice, pick a fruit (berries are my personal favorite), then add extra goodness such as chia seeds, avocado, spirulina, ginger, coconut milk and more.
4. Still having a hard time with the idea of salad for breakfast?
Try this egg, bacon and spinach salad. Eggs and bacon are classic breakfast stars in this simple salad. This recipe serves 2.
- 3 cups of spinach
- 2 slices cooked bacon (quality counts!)
- 2 poached or fried eggs
- 2 tsp. apple cider vinegar
- 3 Tbsp. olive oil
- dash of maple syrup
- pinch of sea salt and fresh ground pepper
1. Divide spinach between two plates. Crumble bacon over the spinach.
2. Place a hot poached or fried egg on top of each salad.
3. Whisk together apple cider vinegar, oil and maple syrup.
4. Drizzle dressing, sea salt and pepper over salads.
Bon appetite! Do you have any favorite green breakfast recipes? Please share below! Also be sure to get your free guide to listening to your body at Jungle Girl Health.