Oatmeal can be an extremely well balanced breakfast that can help to power you through the morning- it can also quickly turn into a carbo-loading event that can result in a big, long, nap.
One of the most common questions I get is how to make a healthy and satisfying bowl of oatmeal- so I’ve pulled together a few tips to help you make your healthiest and most satisfying bowl of oatmeal.
Simple tips for making a well-balanced, satisfying bowl of oatmeal:
- Start with rolled or steel cut oats– Quick-cook oats are more heavily processed and have less fiber that can cause your blood sugar to spike resulting in feeling fatigued.
- Add 1 serving of fruit: The key here is only adding one serving of fruit
- 1 small/medium banana
- 1/2 cup berries
- 1/4 cup dried fruit
- Add 1-2 servings healthy fat: Healthy fat (and protein) is your best friend when it comes to preventing the notorious post-oatmeal blood sugar spike; healthy fats can also be a good source of nutrients, vitamins and minerals too
- 1/4 cup nuts or seeds
- 1-2 Tablespoons ground flaxseed or chia seeds
- 1 Tablespoon nut butter (almond, cashew etc)
- 2-3 Tablespoons unsweetened coconut shreds or pieces
- 1-2 Tablespoons raw cacao nibs
- Skip the added sugar- especially artificial sugar: There’s enough sugar in your oatmeal already if you’ve added fruit; but if you really need some added sweet, go for 1/2 teaspoon honey or brown sugar, and skip the artificial sugars. Artificial sugars can trick your body into thinking that they’re receiving more calories than they actually are (artificial sugars have no calories) and can wreak havoc on blood sugar and satiety. Go for these alternatives instead:
- 1/2 teaspoon of honey, maple syrup, or agave
- 1 teaspoon (or less) brown sugar- organic if possible
Here are a few of my favorite oatmeal concoctions:
- Rolled oats + 2 Tablespoons walnuts + 1 Tablespoon chia seeds + 1 medium banana
- Rolled oats + 1-2 Tablespoons nut butter + 1/2 cup berries + 1-2 Tablespoons flaxseed + dash of cinnamon + (optional) 1-2 Tablespoons cacao nibs
- Rolled oats + 1 Tablespoon cashews + 1 Tablespoon nut butter + 1 banana + 1 Tablespoon coconut flakes