Do You Know Nutrition: Start day with a high-protein breakfast

May 31, 2011 at 12:31 a.m.

Phylis Canion

Phylis Canion

By Phylis Canion

Is it true that eating a high protein breakfast reduces food cravings throughout the rest of the day?

Eating breakfast should be the No. 1 priority in starting off your day (you break the fast), and a high-protein breakfast is even more beneficial.

Researchers at the University of Missouri have found that eating a protein-rich breakfast reduces the brain signals controlling food motivation and reward-driven eating behavior. The reason that protein helps suppress hunger and reduce eating cravings is because it is a thermogenic nutrient, which requires a lot of nutrients to process.

Here are a few suggestions for a healthy, protein rich breakfast:

Eggs are an excellent source of protein and they are low in calories.

Yogurts are a great choice, especially those with a higher protein content, so be sure to check the label.

To increase the protein, you can always add a few nuts or seeds. Cottage cheese contains around 12 to 15 grams of protein for each cup serving. Sprinkle a little cinnamon on your serving with a squirt of agave nectar for a great taste.

A smoothie with an added protein powder like hemp powder is great boost for getting going in the morning, as well as a bowl of oatmeal with some added almonds.

I know that gun powder contains sodium nitrate, but can you tell me why processed meats contain it? That is disgusting and now that I am a label reader, I will never buy processed meats again.

There are two reasons that sodium nitrate is added to processed meats. The first reason is to preserve the color of the meat. More than likely, you have noticed that nearly all meats that contain sodium nitrate or sodium nitrite remain pink or red, even though they are cooked during processing.

The second reason is because these chemicals, sodium nitrite and sodium nitrate, inhibit botulism to some degree.

Sodium nitrate was originally used as a substitute for potassium nitrate as both a cure for sausage and an oxidizer in fireworks and is one of three ingredients in making black powder.

Sodium nitrate is also used as a corrosion inhibitor, in the making of dyes and in the manufacturing of rubber chemicals. Because both of these chemicals are powerful poisons, they should be handled with extreme care and in amounts established as safe by the Food and Drug Administration. Be sure to check the labels for these toxic additives.

Next free nutrition class: Monday, June 13, at Organic Emporium. Call today, 361-576-2100, to sign up.

Phylis B. Canion is a doctor of naturopathic medicine and is a certified nutritional consultant, e-mail her at This column is for nutritional information only and is not intended to treat, diagnose or cure.



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