Good old cereal.
Quick, convenient, nutritious. A great way to start the day.
Umm, if only this was true.
Our addiction to cereals may be one of the single biggest reasons why we are in the midst of an evergrowing obesity epidemic. And just to clarify – because I have been questioned a lot on this lately – cereal includes all grain breakfasts, even the humble porridge and muesli (which I call the classic ‘best of a bad bunch’).
One of the key reasons why we as a society are struggling with our weight is because we cannot control our insulin levels. It’s relatively simple. When we eat carbohydrates, our blood sugar levels rise. If they rise above a certain point, our body releases insulin to combat the rise. When insulin is present in the bloodstream, we are primed to store fat, and/or metabolise sugar into fat.
So a simple solution is to eat foods that do not significantly raise our blood sugar levels. Meat, fish, nuts, eggs, full fat dairy, above ground vegetables, pulses, legumes, low sugar fruits. If these foods form the basis of your diet, then you will lose body fat and improve your concentration levels.
When we start the day with high sugar cereals (basically all cereals have a Glycaemic Index of 50+) our blood sugar levels are destined to rise, then fall very quickly. This will result in the classic mid-morning run for a coffee and muffin to bring the blood sugar levels up, and the whole process repeats itself.
If you start the day with a breakfast higher in protein and fat, it will regulate blood sugar levels, keep you satisifed for longer, and help you make smarter food choices for the rest of the day.
So do yourself a favour and ditch those colourful boxes taking up valuable space in the cupboard. Flip a steak instead.