100-horsepower porridge

How to make breakfast healthy again.

Elbrich Fennema | April 2009 issue

Start your day off with oatmeal.

A breakfast of chocolate flakes and milk contributes to a healthy lifestyle. Or so retailers would like us to believe. And yes, starting the day with breakfast is better than starting it on an empty stomach. But if your blood sugar—or that of your kids—receives an early morning jolt from the refined sugars in many breakfast cereals, it will continue to fluctuate throughout the day. This is unfortunate for us, but great for the sugary cereal makers that peddle all kinds of products to satisfy our snack cravings. The gratification is temporary, of course; the less satisfied we feel, the higher their sales figures.

Thankfully, we can break this vicious cycle by starting our day with an old-fashioned bowl of oatmeal. Oatmeal forces your digestive system to rise and shine to digest the complex sugars (carbohydrates). The result is a gradual release of sugar into your blood. For two servings, bring 1 cup of oatmeal, 2 cups of water and a pinch of salt to a boil. Add a cup of milk, rice milk or soy milk and return to a boil. Let the oatmeal simmer for 15 to 45 minutes on low.

If you or your kids prefer your oatmeal sweet, add some raisins. Oatmeal will keep you feeling pleasantly satisfied until lunch. And if your children aren’t immediate converts, gently explain why horses are so strong

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