Morning, Powered

Monday, May 13, 2013

   Let's get back to business as usual, shall we? The tequila is back in the liquor cabinet where it belongs and we're back at juggling healthy living with our many work and life obligations.

   One of the questions that I often struggle with, and I venture most people who are dedicated to eating and living well do too, is just how exactly to make time for all those responsible choices and rock star veggie meals.

   The answer is often a simple matter of preparation. If I leave the question of what to bring for lunch to the last minute, not only am I rushed but I generally have trouble even thinking of what to bring. Instead, I dedicate a few of the evening's minutes to tomorrow's lunch and it makes things much more manageable.

   This applies to breakfast too, of course. My go to breakfast changes every month or so, right now it's a big bowl of oatmeal with lots of fresh fruit and a touch of blackstrap molasses and chia seeds mixed in (molasses is a fantastic source of iron). This is quick to prepare the morning of, but sometimes I crave something a little more nutrient packed- like a green juice. This past week I had a bear of a day ahead of me and I knew I would need the green juice boost.

   The idea of waking early enough to prepare and juice all those veggies was not appealing so I simply did most of the work the night before. After choosing the veggies and fruit for my juice, I washed and cut them up and sealed them in a zip lock bag. The next morning throwing it all into the juicer was a breeze. I toasted my bread while washing the juicer and one green bonanza and crunchy peanut butter toast later, I was out the door with a major nutrient boost already under my belt.

   By the way, if you haven't tried chia seeds I highly recommend picking a bag up and giving them a shot. Chia seeds are an omega-3 power house and don't require the preparation that flax seeds do (flax seeds must be finely ground in order for our GI tract to access their omega-3's). I also find their flavor to be highly superior to flax seeds. Flax sometimes leaves a weird, gritty, grassy flavor in my mouth but chia is all nutty, crunchy goodness. They release an aloe like gel when exposed to water so they also act as an ideal smoothie or breakfast cereal thickener. Plus, any of us who have lived through the eighties get a huge kick out of eating something called chia. Or maybe that's just me.

   Everyone says it and we all know it: eat breakfast and make it count. Hopefully some of these prep principals help you start the day off right this week too.

   Don't forget to enjoy the early morning light.

The Night Before Juice

1/2 head romaine or green leafy lettuce, washed and roughly chopped
1 large handful kale
1 medium sized beet, scrubbed clean and cut into pieces small enough to fit in your juicer
1 apple or 4 strawberries, washed

   The morning you make the juice, cut the apple into pieces or cut the strawberries into quarters. Juice everything and sip while you make your toast.

Crunchy Peanut Butter Chia Toast

1 slice whole grain bread (Ezekiel is my favorite brand)
2 tablespoons all natural peanut butter
2 teaspoons chia seeds

   Toast bread to desired crunchiness. Spread with peanut butter and sprinkle the chia seeds all over.


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