Habits are interesting as our lives are ruled by them, unless we are careful that is. I’ve talked about creating new habits in the past, such as incorporating new behaviour into our everyday life until they stick. The key word here is repetition. It takes our brain a while to reset habitual thinking and behaviour. This is why it is important to use our conscious, intellectual mind, that sophisticated part which is exclusive to humans, when it comes to making choices. Until such a time that a new habit has become automatic and relegated to our pattern reservoir, the hippocampus, we have to be vigilant and observant. Our primitive mind – the one we’ve had since caveman days – does not like change and would rather we stick to what we know and are familiar with, no matter how damaging our habits may be to our health.
Which is why mornings are so powerful. The beginning of a new day is a wonderful time to start again, to do better, to begin something new. Great morning routines, such as meditating or eating a healthy, hearty breakfast can really change how we carry on our daily business for the rest of the day. Initially we may have to set little reminders in our phones to remember what it is that we are changing, what it is we are supposed to do each morning that we have not done before. But in time, the new habit becomes automatic, like so many other things we do without thinking.
Meditation calms the inner chatter and enables us to focus on tasks at hand and make space in our minds for new ideas to hatch. This is important. Too much internal noise means we have little chance to be our best or make optimal choices. When it comes to changing eating habits, a busy mind is not our friend. The busy mind will tell us to just grab that croissant and be done with it. Who’s got time to dillydally with new eating habits? A peaceful, quiet mind, however, will remind us that we DO want to look and feel our best and that Summer 2019 is going to come around and that hating our bodies on the beach for another year running is not optimal.
Good nutrition is a surefire route to a better quality of life as it fuels our energy, nourishes our cells, fills us up and help us stay satiated for longer. Changing daily habits therefore has the potential to rock our universe in more ways than one which is welcome news.
So where do we begin? Well, it help if we have the right ingredients in our cupboards to begin with. As individuals, we are inherently weak willed and resisting temptation first thing in the morning is almost impossible, especially on an empty stomach. Removing unhelpful products which otherwise would be a go to item is therefore a useful trick which I can highly recommend.
Your conviction has got to be the main driver in the cupboard cleaning exercise. Do it hungry and you are bound to fail. Things to avoid? Sugary cereal, wheat toast, bagels, croissants, pop tarts (yes they are still being consumed) and any kind of shop juice which has been pasteurized beyond repair.
Once your kitchen is filled with good stuff you can safely rotate menus on an ongoing basis. Here are some top breakfasts ideas which feature heavily in my household. All of it taste good and does you better with plenty of scope for variety. Voila!
- Poached eggs on Portobello mushroom with avocado and cherry tomatoes.
- Scrambled eggs with spinach and tomatoes.
- Rye bread or cracker with tomatoes and black pepper.
- Chia pudding with blueberries and raspberries.
- Oatmeal with cinnamon, cardamom, nut milk and fresh berries.
- Berry and avocado smoothie with flax seeds and nut milk of your choice.
- Plenty of cold pressed vegetable juice.