Reclaiming a Third for a Fifty-percent Improvement

What if you were offered a way to improve your nutrition by fifty percent. Would you take it?

You probably would, so get ready: That offer is coming your way right now.

Let’s factor out all the “between” eating we do in a day and focus on the old model of three meals a day: breakfast, lunch, and dinner (or breakfast, lunch, and supper, depending on where you’re from) – one third, one third, and one third. For lunch and dinner, the sky is the limit on what social norms tell us is generally acceptable fare. We indulge in fruits and vegetables, sandwiches, soups and sautés. No one bats an eye.

But those same social norms seem sometimes to be far stricter in the matter of acceptable breakfast fare. Here we often see the menu dominated by animal products, fat, and processed foods: pancakes (yum), sausage (yum), bacon (yum), eggs (yum), biscuits (yum), bagels (yum), waffles (yum). These may be sort of a stereotype of breakfast, but they’re so for a reason: We eat a lot of this yummy but nutritionally dangerous stuff at breakfast time.

So, what if? What if we reclaim the day’s first meal, retaking the breaking of fast in the name of the nutrition our body craves instead of for those yummy, yet fatty, goodies our mouths crave? (My mouth is watering just thinking about these foods; I’m nearly 12 years vegetarian, but I do have a soul.) If we do this, we will lay claim to a fifty percent (not 33.3; it’s complicated) increase in the number of meals available to us during which internalized “norms” tell us we can eat nutritious foods (ideally, whole, plant-based foods).

This is not a call for vegetarianism, but if that’s what you hear and what motivates, then fine. Instead, it’s a wake-up call – literally, as it turns out – that we be aware of the seriously nutritionally crappy food we eat for our day’s first meal.

Your health belongs to you, and you have a right to it. Start your day by showing your gut (instead of your mouth) that you love it. Good morning to you, indeed!