The Most Important Meal of the Day

Let’s start with the most important meal of the day, breakfast. About one out of four women skip this meal. There are several reasons for this including that hectic morning rush attempting to get children dressed, fed and off to school as well as getting ourselves prepared for our day. Another reason is the belief that there is not enough time or it is too “complicated” to prepare this meal. I think the main reason is our desire to cut calories with the belief that this will help us to avoid gaining excess weight. However, studies show that women who do not eat breakfast have a harder time not only losing weight, but may actually gain weight instead.

Breakfast is the meal that jump starts our metabolism. Our bodies have been fasting throughout the night while we sleep. Our body is in need of energy. By not providing that much needed energy until noon, we actually slow our metabolism down. The body stores those calories that we do consume because it does not know when the next source of energy will be provided. When breakfast is skipped, we also tend to over eat at the next meal because we are starving.

This meal is even more important for those women who are pregnant or who have Gestational Diabetes because the hormones of pregnancy continually allow more glucose to go to the baby. This glucose is the energy source for the baby to meet the energy and nutritional requirements for growth.  An empty stomach can lead to more nausea or dizziness, which are also signs of low blood sugar.

The second item we will focus on today is portion control. It is very important when looking at recipes and reading labels that we take note of the portion size. The nutritional information provided is based on that portion size not what we think a portion size should be.

Below are two recipes for breakfast that are not only healthy, but good. My kids love both of these (mine are picky so this is always a good test). The big tip I would like to pass along is that both of these can be made ahead, packaged into appropriate portions, placed in the freezer and quickly defrosted for breakfast, thus allowing time for all of that multitasking we moms must do in order to start our day.

Buttermilk Waffles with Jam

(I don’t have waffle maker so make pancakes instead)

1 cup whole wheat flour

1 cup old-fashioned rolled oats (no instant or quick oats)

1 tbsp. plus 1 tsp. baking powder.3 tbsp. sugar substitute (I like Splenda)

3 tbsp. canola oil

1 ¼ cups 1% or fat-free buttermilk

½ cup water

1 egg (or ¼ cup egg substitute)

Sugar-free, jam any flavor

Combine flour, oats, baking powder, and sugar substitute in a medium bowl. Whisk together the oil, buttermilk, water and egg or egg substitute in a separate bowl. Pour the buttermilk mixture into the flour mixture and stir until combined. Spray skillet with non-fat cooking spray and heat over medium heat. Add ½ cup batter to skillet and turn when edges are firm. Add dollop of sugar-jelly or sugar-free jam.

Nutritional Information Per Serving (serving is ½ cup batter)

360 calories

11 grams protein

15 grams fat

56 grams carbohydrate

2.5 grams saturated fat

6 grams fiber

Taken from The South Beach Diet Quick and Easy Cookbook by Arthur Agatston, M.D.


  • 15 grams of carbohydrate equals 1 serving, so for yourself or if you are diabetic cut batter to ¼ cup making the number of servings of carbohydrate as 2
  • Prepare on a weekend or day when you are not working and place cooked pancakes in freezer bag and freeze
  • Can use low sugar syrup for kids
  • Add a protein such as turkey bacon, 1 egg or sausage recipe below which will slow the digestion of the carbohydrate

Breakfast Turkey Stack

1 pound ground turkey breast

4 tsp. sugar-free pancake or maple syrup

½ tsp. dried sage

¼ tsp. cayenne pepper

¼ tsp. salt

1/8 tsp. ground pepper

1/8 tsp. ground ginger

1 tsp. olive oil

1 large tomato cut into 4 slices

4 (1 oz.) slices reduced-fat or fat –free cheddar cheese

Mix all ingredients in a bowl, except olive oil, and form into 4 patties. Heat oil in skillet, cook patties until browned and cooked through. Lay tomato slices in single layer in a baking dish, season with salt and pepper. Top each tomato slice with turkey patty and top with cheese. Broil until cheese is melted.

Nutritional Information Per Serving  (serving is 1 patty)

220 Calories

36 grams protein

7 grams fat

4 grams carbohydrate

3.5 grams saturated fat

360 mg sodium

Taken from The South Beach Diet Quick and Easy Cookbook by Arthur Agatston, M.D.


  • Use non-fat cooking spray and eliminate 4.6 grams fat and ½ gram saturated fat
  • By using fat-free cheese eliminate a little more fat and calories
  • If combining with the waffle recipe, eliminate the tomato and cheese which will reduce the total carbohydrate content
  • Can make 5 patties instead of 4 when combining with waffle recipe especially if you are diabetic
  • Prepare on a weekend or day when you are not working and place in freezer bag and freeze
  • May prepare as above as a breakfast; freeze, thaw, prepare tomato and cheese as above
  • If diabetic will still need to add 2 servings of a carbohydrate if not adding a pancake