Looking for a place to start with cancer-fighting foods? You've come to the right place! My No. one easiest suggestion is to start your day off right with a healthy breakfast.
And one of the easiest, best-for-you foods you can have for breakfast is oatmeal. It has so many healthful properties -- it's loaded with fiber and low in fat. It's been shown to help lower bad cholesterol and raise good cholesterol simultaneously. In my book, oatmeal is a Superfood!
A few years back, a doctor friend and I were talking about how people can change to a more plant-based way of eating (research shows it's the best way to eat for disease-free health), and he said he was convinced that it didn't have to be hard to do this. I agree! It's not rocket science and it does not need to be hard to eat well!
My latest project is to develop some easy ways for people to move in a healthy direction. We can take small steps in the right direction that add up to better choices/health over time.
For example, my husband's brother announced one morning on a visit to our home this summer (we live in Maine) that it was the one-year anniversary since he has started eating oatmeal for breakfast every day. He was about to have his 365th bowl. Announcements like this make my day!
Before starting his oatmeal routine, he had always skipped breakfast, having just coffee every morning. In the year since adding oatmeal, he has lost 15 pounds, plus he looks great (and feels better). This was without changing anything else -- only ADDING a bowl of oatmeal each morning.
2 cups spring water or filtered tap water (I sometime use 1 cup of water & 1 cup of 100 percent apple juice.)
1 cup rolled oats
Pinch of sea salt
1 apple (Maine McIntosh is my favorite, in season), cut into cubes
Optional: Top with other fresh fruit, such as delicious wild Maine blueberries and/or toasted sunflower seeds, which add a little protein.
Put water in a pan on high heat and add sea salt, oatmeal and apples (if using). Bring to a boil, turn to low and simmer uncovered 8-10 minutes. You may add more water if needed for desired consistency anytime during cooking.
Turn off heat and cover. Serve topped with fresh fruit, if desired. Serves 2.
Ten minutes too long? Use the quicker-cooking oatmeal. Only have a microwave and a little time? You can buy oatmeal in separate serving packages and your breakfast can be ready in minutes. The healthiest choice is plain, unsweetened oatmeal. Feel like you just need a little sweetener? Try my half apple juice/half water suggestion or add a teaspoon of brown rice syrup or maple syrup.
If you prefer milk on your oatmeal (I like mine without), try a splash of non-dairy almond, rice or soy milk (or a soy and rice milk blend).
If you're not an oatmeal kind of person - you eat only toast in the morning or need toast, too? Find a whole-grain bread with as few ingredients as possible. The brands I choose contain whole-wheat flour, sourdough starter, water and salt. Avoid brands with high fructose corn syrup at all costs and sugar too, if possible.
For a healthy spread, try almond butter (it's non-dairy, only almonds), or drizzle a little olive oil on instead of butter, then sprinkle with a pinch of sea salt.
Want to take ANOTHER step? Try some steamed kale with your breakfast. Yes! Vegetables for breakfast, definitely. (OK, so I skipped all the way to Breakfast 301 for you beginners, sorry!). Kale is a great non-dairy source of calcium, filled with fiber and low in calories! Got kale?
QUICK STEAMED KALE
3-4 kale leaves, washed carefully and sliced
¼ cup of spring or filtered tap water
Bring water to a rapid boil over a high flame in a pot. Add greens, cover and steam on high 2-3 minutes. Drain water from pan to prevent overcooking. Serves 1-2.
Would you consider adding breakfast if you don't already eat it? Could you try oatmeal or even kale? What healthy breakfasts do you like? Try these breakfast suggestions and see how you feel!