Breakfast Snobbery

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There are some things I like to think it’s okay to be a snob about. Like wine. And teeth—Call me shallow, but I could never date a man with Austin Powers-esque not-so-pearly-whites. Another big one is breakfast. As a dietitian, it’s basically my job to encourage people to put some fuel in the tank within a few hours of waking. I will never understand not wanting to eat in the morning, and I have little sympathy for “too busy/not enough time.” Sorry I’m not sorry. Though Mr. “Cigarette and a Coffee” is only hurting himself, how about growing the f up and taking some interest in your longevity, sir?

General Mills recently sent me a few samples of some new products to try out—no review required, just a little edible FYI. A few of the products, which I’ll likely post about soon, were fairly healthy (my co-workers really liked a new cranberry almond Nature Valley granola with added protein). However, there was one product that had me scratching my head a little:


Though I do like that these contain real-food ingredients like rice, quinoa, and oats, do we really need the artificial food coloring in the strawberry drink? Sugar also happens to be the third (of many) ingredients in each flavor, which doesn’t exactly scream “get up and stay up.” I know that adding some fiber can help temper the blood sugar spike, but 15 grams is still quite a lot of sugar to start your day with. Not that this isn’t a typical American amount, of course. I guess looking at a product that gets quite a bit right, I wanted to see it go all the way .BFAST nutrition

That said, I can understand the appeal of a product like this for busy parents who’d rather see their picky kids drink this on their way to school than go without a morning meal. Perhaps it could also make a good alternative to pricey oral supplements like Ensure and Boost for elderly and/or sick people who do better with liquid sources of nutrition.

However, when it comes to grown-ass healthy adults, I’m a big believer that one always has time for a real breakfast, even on the run. Feeding yourself doesn’t have to be a lengthy, elaborate affair. Here are a few lightning-quick breakfast ideas:

  • Avocado or nut butter on toast
  • Greek yogurt with cereal or fruit on top
  • A handful of nuts and a piece of fruit
  • A hard-boiled egg (easy to make ahead of time)
  • Overnight oats (to-go container-friendly)
  • Actual cereal and milk
  • Skim latte and a piece of fruit

What are some of your favorite quick breakfasts? 

FDA Says No to Trans Fats

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Yesterday, the FDA announced that trans fats will no longer be “generally recognized as safe” and proposed an initiative to drastically reduce their use in the United States food supply.

Types of Fat

That means no more partially hydrogenated oils in processed foods. This proposal is open for comment for the next 60 days, giving food manufacturers a chance to “prove” that trans fats are safe to consume, despite extensive research associating them with higher LDL (“bad”) cholesterol and lower HDL (“good”) cholesterol and lovely things like heart disease and heart attacks.

Though this could mean a shorter shelf life for products such as cookies and crackers, it could mean a longer life for many Americans.

In other cool news, Kraft unveiled plans this week to replace yellow food dyes in some of its shaped mac & cheese products with plant-based color sources such as turmeric and paprika. The new versions of these products will also feature 6 grams more whole grains and less sodium and saturated fat. Spicy Spiderman, anyone?

“Classic Kombucha”

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This “Classic” Kombucha business really cracks me up. I guess 0.5% alcohol still counts, but seriously?! Anything to be able to charge more or find a new angle to sell something to a niche market…Hah, “black label” kombucha. Too bad it tastes so good. Kombucha classic

I may or may not be a little disappointed I did not get carded. over 21 kombucha

Do you like kombucha? If you do, what’s your favorite variety? 

Coconut Dark Chocolate for a Full Moon Monday

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Lindt coconut chocolateWhy do the good weekends always go the fastest? This time yesterday I was lounging by a pool, and today I’m about to lie down for a quick nap before starting some work for job #2. One day, maybe I’ll just have one job instead of 3. That would be neat.

Sometimes after a bleary-eyed Monday workday (part I), the CVS pharmacist (who always remembers you) saying, “You don’t look so tired today,” is enough to lift you out of a “WTF, full moon/Monday” fog. Coming across a new kind of chocolate helps even more. For those of you who avoid the coconut truffles in the box, I’ll take ’em. PMS is a great excuse for an impulse buy, especially one that involves dark chocolate.   I’m definitely looking forward to trying this.

Do you like chocolate and coconut together? What was your last impulse buy? 

PS—There’s still time to enter the Firmoo giveaway!

That’s a thing now?

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When it comes to cereal, I tend to stick to one type for a long time. Insert “cereal monogamy” joke here. I don’t even know why, exactly. Well, that’s a lie. There are two reasons I can think of:

  1. I like what I like (until I get sick of it).
  2. It takes a single gal a long time to get through a box of cereal, especially if said cereal is used mainly as a garnish for yogurt.

IMG_2523Anyway, I’ve been trying to put more energy into planning my budget and saving money. Starting a new job has been a huge motivator to take some more control over my finances (autocorrect tried to turn that into “fineness”—love it). I’ve been nerding out a bit coupon clipping, shopping sales, and the like. So…when I found myself in need of a new box of cereal recently, I opted for the on-sale Fiber One (which I’d never tried before) over the familiar and more expensive. Have I been living under a rock or is 2 bags in 1 box both weird and kind of cool? Is that a thing now? It’s kind of genius, actually.

While I liked the taste, I was confused by the sweetness, especially since the label lists 0 grams of sugar. Sure enough, there’s aspartame in it. I kind of wish I’d read the label before purchasing—I might have gone with something else.

I try to avoid too much artificial sweetener (I chew so much gum, I really don’t need it in food). Though there’s not any conclusive research right now that says it’s definitely bad for you, there certainly isn’t anything confirming it’s good for you. Oh well. I probably won’t buy it again, but I’m not going to freak out and throw away the box. You win some, you lose some.

Have you ever seen the 2 bags/1 box thing? What’s your favorite cereal? 

Weekend Loves

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Happy Saturday! Can you believe it’s June 1st? I woke up this morning really excited about the new month. So far, this weekend couldn’t be more different from last. For starters, it’s freaking sunny out! And hot! Love it.

I also love that I have time for summer reading and diner brunch with friends. My aunt surprised me with a gift card to Ann Taylor LOFT so of course I had to scope out the 40% off sale…

I’m also really digging this new snack of sliced peach/nectarine with cottage cheese and fig & ginger preserves. So many good flavors. I go through phases where I forget about cottage cheese—I tend to alternate between that and nonfat ricotta. I really love how versatile it is, though, especially the no-salt-added kind. Maybe it’s the reign of Gemini influence talking, but I appreciate having the option of going sweet or savory. Options are good.

What are you loving this weekend? 

Favorite Tea

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IMG_2247I’m very loyal to green tea. Save for a weird six-month coffee stint in 2011-2012, I’ve been drinking it every morning since I was 20. Sometimes I want something a little different though. A few months ago, my mom gave me a few bags of this cinnamon tea from New York company Harney & Sons. It was love at first sip, and when I saw their booth at the Coffee and Tea Festival in March, I quickly bought a tin. I really wish I’d bought more than one…this is so good. Life is too short not to love what you drink. Hm. That sounds like a cheesy commercial. Ah well. It’s not like I work in advertising.

Have an awesome weekend!