I eat the same thing for breakfast every day.
- It’s mobile. My breakfast is a shake. I try to get out the door early and this allows me to take my breakfast with me.
- It’s healthy. Details outlining the healthiness factors are what most of the article is about.
- It’s delicious. It tastes like a sinful chocolate milkshake! Zero added sugar and not much actual sugar either.
- It’s cheap. Depending on how much I buy in bulk, the price is ~$2.75 per day.
- It’s easy to clean up. I love the idea of blending a green smoothie or something in that vein every morning, but I hate cleaning my blender. Also, I’ve got 5+ shaker cups, so I’m not reliant on the one blending vessel.
- The decision is done. “Breakfast is one more decision I don’t have to make” – Seth Godin. I love the simplicity of having decided what to have for breakfast many moons ago.
- I feel awesome after drinking it! This is the final awesomeness factor that makes me love this breakfast. It helps me get my day going with a “let’s make it happen” attitude!
My Breakfast Shake.
- 4 oz water. [Cost: $0.00]
- 1 scoop Amazing Grass Green Superfood powder. (This stuff is like a green smoothie powder. Convenience factor cranked to 11!). [Cost: $0.44]
- 2 tbsp Great Lakes Hydrolyzed Collagen. [Cost: $0.50]
- 2 tbsp chia seeds. [Cost: $0.20]
- 2 tbsp raw cacao powder. [Cost: $0.20]
- 3-5 raw eggs. (Wait raw eggs?!? Yeah, I had preconceptions about eating raw eggs at first too. Don’t fret the risks are unbelievably low.) [Cost: $1-$2]
Okay let’s get the raw egg shock factor out of the way. Yes I eat raw eggs. Yes there have been issues in the past with eggs and salmonella. The risks are so beyond small with today’s modern food safety regulations.
The keys to avoiding any chance of salmonella and raw eggs are easy.
- Don’t eat any eggs that are cracked, dirty, or otherwise look off-putting.
- Don’t eat eggs that smell weird.
- Don’t eat eggs that have been out at room temperature for an extended period of time.
- Don’t eat eggs that are expired.
- Eat only eggs laid by pasture raised hens.
These are all basic food safety principles! Would you eat beef that looks blue or some kabobs that sat out all night or an apple the smells like sewage? I didn’t think so.
The only thing you might not have been aware of was the pasture raised qualification. Eggs laid by pasture-raised hens have about double the healthy components as caged and eliminate almost all potential pathogens.
Here are the numbers. As of the latest estimates I could find, about 1 in 20,000 eggs has salmonella. On top of this, pasture raised eggs are 98% less likely to have salmonella. Assuming the 1 in 20,000 eggs are cage-raised this number rockets to the order of 1 in 1-million. Dropping potential negatives even lower, a healthy adult immune system should be more than capable of warding off the small amount of salmonella in a few eggs. To put a final nail in the coffin (and to repeat myself), I’m betting a salmonella infested egg capable of doing real damage is going to smell, look strange, be cracked, or in some other fashion give itself away as harmful.
So let’s leave your fear of salmonella ridden eggs behind. Eat your raw cookie dough and feel good about it! Make and eat some homemade mayo! Embrace quality eggs for the health they provide!
Quick Egg Health Benefits:
- Improve Heart Health: The driving force behind the egg heart health connection is the omega-3 fatty acids. Pasture raised eggs have double the amount of omega-3 fatty acids compared to cage-raised eggs. (Maybe that higher price is a correlation to price/nutrient instead of price/egg!!)
- Reduce the effects of metabolic syndrome: Metabolic syndrome (or metabolic disease discussed in Cheer the Telomere) is a cluster of issues related to high blood sugar levels, excess body fat (especially harmful, visceral body fat around the waist), and abnormal cholesterol levels. A study released in 2016 provided evidence that egg consumption had a significant impact on blood glucose and triglyceride levels (a positive marker of improved metabolic syndrome).
- Lutein (a carotenoid in eggs) improves eye health, may improve activity level, and helps keep your skin healthy. Just in case you’re curious, carotenoids are nutrients that help fight free radical damage and provide important antioxidants to ward off disease and lower inflammation.
Amazing Grass – Green Superfood.
This addition is easy. It’s got a huge mix of powerhouse veggies, anti-oxidant fruits, bad-ass prebiotic fibers, multiple algae, and a myriad of different wholesome ingredients. In my opinion, this powder is not as good as adding all of the individual ingredients into a blender and drinking that, BUT…the convenience factor of a powder is 1000% worth it!
Why did I choose this green powder mix over others? It’s got mostly organic ingredients, it’s cheaper than most, they take great care in preserving the nutrients in the original ingredients (check out their process here), they were one of the original green powder superfood creators (this stuff is called Green Superfood after all), and most importantly I feel great after drinking it. Boom!
Cacao/Raw Cocoa Powder.
The main reason I started adding this stuff to my shake was for flavor. Without this stuff the shake tastes like a thick vegetable smoothie. Afterwards, hello chocolate milkshake!
Quick Terminology Lesson:
It’s thought that the spelling of cocoa originated by mistake. Cocoa normally refers to a more processed cocoa/cacao bean product with added sugar. Where raw cacao has no sugar. So the healthiest thing to buy is a raw cocoa or raw cacao without any added sugar. Check the ingredients! It should say something like this:
The Happiness Effect:
Elson Hass’ book, Staying Healthy with Nutrition, demonstrates cacao contains a substance called phenethylamine. Phenethylamine is a neurotransmitter that elevates mood and is a natural antidepressant.
The University of Michigan Health System (UMIM) uncovered cacao’s endorphin boosting abilities. Endorphins are released in response to pain and stress and help to alleviate anxiety and depression. The surging “second wind” and euphoric “runners high” during and after a vigorous run are a result of endorphins.
UMIM also discovered that cacao may boost serotonin. Serotonin flows when you feel significant or important. Loneliness and depression appears when serotonin is absent. This is why antidepressants target serotonin to lift happiness levels.
Cacao has more antioxidants than tea, wine, blueberries, and even goji berries. Flavonoids are part of a powerful group of antioxidants known as polyphenols. Cacao is one of the highest polyphenol-containing foods. Just in case you forgot from Cheer the Telomere, antioxidants help to fight cancer, heart disease, and aging.
My go to cacao is Healthworks Cacao Powder. I buy in bulk to keep the cost per serving as low as possible. Even at the higher prices per unit, my morning shake has ~$0.25 in it. Not much IMHO.
Great Lakes Hydrolyzed Collagen.
Don’t worry I’m not talking about collagen injections or getting those oh so sexy balloon lips! Yuck! This is the collagen you eat to benefit yo’ body! The Great Lakes website summarizes the benefits best.
“Essentially, collagen is the material that holds our bodies together. It is known that by our mid-twenties, our bodies start losing their natural ability to repair connective tissue, bones, tendons, ligaments, cartilage, blood cells, skin, tissue, hair and nails. Scientists have discovered that hydrolyzed collagen can provide the missing nutritional links to aid in the body’s ability to repair these critical areas. Hydrolyzed collagen is a unique combination of amino acids that can promote healing and conditioning over other protein, especially for bone and joint health care. Amino acids are collectively beneficial to cell reproduction and the distinctive spectrum of this product can promote the growth of healthy tissue.
What makes this product unique are the high amounts of Amino Acids – Alanine, Glycine and Proline – that you won’t find in other protein supplements. The same collagen which is found naturally in your bones, skin and cartilage can be replenished with hydrolyzed collagen. This bioactive product contains 92% protein and is easily assimilated by the human body. Hydrolyzed collagen promotes cell growth which produce synovial fluids that first lubricate joints and then build tissue.”
On top of all this is that the beef is pasture raised. Where our food comes from matters. I believe that an optimal source of food is nutritionally good for you, is sustainable for the planet, and is humanely raised (humanely raised animals…I don’t give a shit about humanely raised plants! Those fruits and veggies deserve to suffer like the bastards they are! 😄). From my research, the Great Lakes Hydrolyzed Collagen checks all the boxes. Full disclosure, I’m not affiliated with this brand, but I wish I was. They’re badass.
Chia means ‘strength’ in Mayan. Chia seeds promote healthy skin, reduce signs of again, support heart health and digestive systems, and build stronger bones and muscles. They are also a great source of alpha lipoic acid (ALA) omega-3 fatty acids.
When soaked, chia seeds get a gel coating that forms a barrier and slows down your digestion to create a sustained release of energy. They also promote healthier digestion and balancing the bacteria in your gut. On top of this, chia seeds reverse inflammation, lower blood pressure, reverse oxidative stress, and help your body absorb vitamins.
The only real thing you need to do with chia seeds is give them a soak. Soaking chia seeds makes them easier to digest and gives your body easier access to the seed’s nutrients as mentioned above. The minimum soak time for nutritional release is somewhere between 30 minutes – 2 hours.
In order to do this for my breakfast, I make the shake around 6:30am and drink it closer to 9:30am. Well more than the 2-hour max window required.
The most important take home here is to find your breakfast and repeat, repeat, repeat! Remember “Breakfast is one more decision I don’t have to make” – Seth Godin.
Breakfast is my easiest meal decision because I made it long ago. Decide to do a week, 2 weeks, or even a month worth of experimenting to determine your ideal breakfast. And then repeat again and again. What’s for breakfast? I already know. Do you?