You have probably heard the age-old saying that “breakfast is the most important meal of the day,” but I am going to challenge that statement with something less specific. In fact, I believe breakfast – as we traditionally think of it (cereal, bagels, muffins, etc) – is an unfortunate society-created construct. Of course the cereal companies are going to encourage you to eat your Wheaties first thing; but if balancing your blood sugar, and reaping the rewards of long-lasting energy for hours is a goal of yours, cereal is the last thing you should be eating in the morning.
Therefore, breakfast isn’t necessarily the most important meal of the day. What you eat first is. Let me explain. I’m sure you know someone (could be you!) who has said they just aren’t that hungry when they wake up. They undoubtedly have been told by a doctor, nutritionist, or perhaps a parent that they need to eat breakfast. I used to agree with this! I now know that if you aren’t a breakfast person, that’s OK. And you might even be better off for it. But again, it still depends on what you eat first.
I like to use the analogy of when you walk into a party where loud music is being played. At first your ears are sensitive to the sound, but eventually, you become desensitized to it, and can mix and mingle just fine. Your ears have adjusted. It is the same thing with blood sugar in the morning after an overnight fast. Because your insulin levels are at their lowest point, and most sensitive in the morning, what you eat first could make or break your blood sugar balance.
Let’s say it has been 10 hours since your last meal, and you start your day with a bowl of sugary cereal or bagel topped with jam. Given that both are carb-heavy choices, your blood sugar will spike higher and faster than if you were to eat them later in the day, when your insulin has had time to warm up so to speak. But if what you ate first was balanced with healthy fat, fiber, and protein (like an Empower Bar, eggs with avocado, or a green smoothie with collagen), blood sugar levels would stay more stable, leaving you on more of an even keel for the rest of the day.
So what does this mean for your carb consumption? Neither they, nor insulin, are the enemy. Read this article to learn more about why. Know that this is the science behind the creation of our 21-Day Healthified Kit, so if you are looking for a place to get started with blood sugar balance, I encourage you to check out it!