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915 Are You What You Eat?

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click here if you cannot view audio player: PP-915Breakfast.mp3

Tune in to our radio show on your local public radio station, or sign up for the podcast and listen at your leisure. Here's what it's about:

Are you what you eat? Researchers are finding that the meals you choose may have an unexpected influence on your health over the long term. Scientists have found that men who ate breakfast regularly were less likely to develop cardiovascular complications over the course of many years.

Do you eat breakfast? If not, why not? What is your favorite breakfast? We suspect that not all breakfasts are created equal. We'll talk about our favorites and welcome your thoughts on your favorites.

21st century nutrition science goes beyond the determination of calories, carbs, fats and protein. It even reaches out beyond essential vitamins and minerals. Now researchers are interested in other compounds that plants make. One such that has garnered a great deal of attention is resveratrol. Find out why there is such excitement about this vital nutrient.

One of our favorite breakfasts is Joe's Brain Boosting Smoothie:

  • 1 teaspoon fish oil
  • 1 frozen banana
  • 1 cup fresh or frozen mixed berries
  • If using fresh berries: 1 cup crushed ice
  • cup plain yogurt
  • cup pomegranate or cherry juice
  • cup pasteurized egg whites (or roughly 4 eggs' worth)
  • 4 tablespoons whey powder
  • 2 tablespoons ground flaxseed
Add all ingredients to a blender. Puree until smooth. You may need to scrape down the sides once or twice with a spatula to ensure that the mixture is evenly blended. Pour into tall glasses and enjoy right away.
Should you wish more wonderful breakfast recipes, you will find this one and many others in Recipes & Remedies from The People's Pharmacy

Ask questions and share your own stories by calling 888-472-3366 or emailing between 7 and 8 am EDT.

Guests: Eric B. Rimm, Sc.D., is Associate Professor of Epidemiology and Nutrition at Harvard School of Public Health. His research was published in the American Heart Association's journal Circulation

Heather Hausenblas, Ph.D., is the Director of the Exercise Psychology Laboratory at the University of Florida.

 The podcast of this program will be available the Monday after the broadcast date. The show can be streamed online from this site and podcasts can be downloaded for free for four weeks after the date of broadcast. After that time has passed, digital downloads are available for $2.99. CDs may be purchased at any time after broadcast for $9.99.




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  • Currently 3.9/5
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Did you enjoy this radio show? Average rating: 3.9/5 (64 votes)
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I don't usually eat breakfast because I'm not hungry in the mornings. I don't see the need in eating out of habit and when I'm not hungry.

For those trying to avoid gluten, which I try only semi-successfully, a good-tasting breakfast is yoghurt mixed with 1/3 cup each of walnuts, pumpkin seeds, and almonds, with another 1/3 cup of frozen blueberries or black raspberries.

I just turned 60 last week and always eat breakfast. Monday through Friday I have oatmeal with cranberries, blueberries, and lots of cinnamon.

Toward the end of the holiday season I buy up bags of fresh cranberries and freeze them adding about a quarter cup to my oatmeal. Being that it's blueberry season I am stocking up now. I am down to just about my last cranberries. I will to buy a few more bags next season.

I also drink a cup of skim milk, two cups of coffee, and eat some protein. Before heading out to work, I consume a half gallon of water as well. This is over a two hour which includes 35-40 minutes of exercises.

Hi, Joe and Terri,

Thanks for your excellent project that delivers engaging and useful health maintenance info week after week!

The Israeli study of effects of diet and snack schedule on judges’ decisions got me thinking. Is there a chance that it was an accidental forward of satire from The Onion?


This was an actual study in PNAS:

I heard the hosts comment that freezing bananas doesn't work for them. For ME: freezing bananas is one of my best baking hints. I freeze them (when they turn too-ripe dark) in large freezer bags right in their skins. They do turn black in the freezer. I put the frozen bananas in the microwave for a minute (+ or -) and they effortlessly slip right out of their skins into my baking recipes. They add just the right touch of moistness and flavor to endless recipes.

Hemp protein powder is a nice alternative to whey and Vegan friendly as well!

I listened with great interest to all the Smoothie recipes: My own smoothie is a great deal like the rest including fruits and greens. But the protein I add includes Chia seeds and Hemp Hearts. I thought for sure someone else would have used at least one of them. I also keep a lemon in the freezer for fresh lemon zest every morning. That always adds a little zing to the smoothie.

I've started to make my own granola that has no added fat or sugar. The key to making it taste wonderful is to toast or bake most ingredients except for the dried or fresh fruit. Toasted oatmeal becomes far more delicious.
flax seeds
sesame seeds
wheat germ
dried cherries
golden raisins

Serve with fresh fruit, milk or yogurt.

A question about breakfast. How often after I wake up should I eat breakfast? I usually eat breakfast 2 to 3 hours after I wake up - I wake up at 7:00.

Thanks much. Love the show.


People's Pharmacy response: There's nothing wrong with what you are doing.

Vivian - how long do you toast your granola, and what temperature? Mary

Hi Mary,

I'm not good at keeping time and generally have the timer ringing often enough for me to check it. I spread the oatmeal out on a sheet pan so it is completely covered, not too thinly. 350 for at least 20 min or more. I keep checking it to see when the color changes, getting darker. Sorry I can't describe it more fully. My husband also thinks this is the best granola he has had. Probably 1/3 of the granola is made up of toasted nuts, and you can use any that you like. I don't like peanuts or walnuts in it which is why I choose almonds and pecans as the nut base.

Trader Joe's has toasted wheat germ, toasted flax seeds, roasted almonds. I forgot to get sesame seeds which I also toast and add, plus toasting pecans. TJ also has unsweetened coconut that when toasted (only 5-7 min, doesn't take long) adds a wonderful subtle flavor.

Good luck with it. I'm strange in that I don't like milk in granola, don't like it soggy. This is delicious with fruit; it allows me to get a large amount of fruit in the morning. Enjoy.

Nailed it AA. Also, Joe's smoothie has a huge carb load. Banana, berries AND juice. I would be hungry again within minutes!

Vivian - thanx for the granola details! One more question: any particular kind of oatmeal?

I could drink Joe's smoothie and a 32 ounce coke and would not get hungry - people are different. Unfortunately many Americans are insulin resistant which is a straightforward testable condition, pre-diabetes. Fasting glucose should be 80 with insulin level of 2 or 3. After the standard glucola load, normal, young people should not have glucoses over 100 or 110 and insulin levels of 10 or 15 or less. The typical patient with an American diet and burdened with industrial oils directly from fryer vats or indirectly through animals fed those oils, will perhaps get hungry more than a vegan runner and run glucose fasting of 110 and insulin levels over 20 on the road to burning out the pancreas - overt diabetes. Early interference in this process is probably a good idea in all but the oldest people.

On this show, one of your medical authorities mentioned Rasbitrol (sp?) I've been unable to find it by googling or in Wikipedia. Would you please provide me with the proper spelling? Thank you.

To the lactose-intolerant caller who wondered about yogurt for breakfast: it might not be a problem because the fermentation seems to help break down the lactose. Milk and ice cream do not have that advantage. I do fine with Greek yogurt and I recently found goat milk cheddar cheese, so I am in heaven! Give it a try...

Should I exercise before eating breakfast or wait 2 hours after eating or does it matter.
I hear to drink water before eating or only wait one full hour after eating (never with a meal), your thoughts please.
Does pesticides "wash" off food or are they in the meat of food also.
How safe is eating food without washing that are in the plastic tubs?
Can I freeze (never heat) water from my spigot in non free bpt bottles and drink.
Can you site any studies proving the above answers?
Thank you in advance.

Muscle cramps in my thighs and on up into the abdomen were excruciating, and left the muscles sore. Potassium and calcium helped, but I realized they happened when I slept with my knees drawn up. I made a concerted effort to train myself to keep my legs straight when sleeping, and am so thankful to say I no longer suffer those painful cramps!

As always -- enjoyed the show, delving into this topic, and sharing ideas, Joe and Terry!

In my smoothies (especially when adding fruit/juice), I usually add unsweetened almond milk.

If using juice: I add in a ratio of 2/3rds almond milk to 1/3 fruit smoothie/juice blend. With fresh fruit: added as needed. Because I often have yogurt as a meal or snack later in the day, I don't incorporate it into my smoothies.

I always include tart cherry juice concentrate, and add-in other nutritional enhancements (flax oil, chia seeds, etc).

Another option is rice protein powder (vegan).

Hope this helps offer other alternatives and ideas!

I wish I'd been able to call in to this show - I listen on the podcast so lag a bit.

I am fanatical about my oatmeal! I've come to this recipe by tweaking one thing and another; with several components contributed by this radio program. I look forward to it each morning. My anticipation is more visceral than that with which I approach the best comfort food.

It is not sweet at all, but gently savory. Cinnamon and ginger provide most of the flavor, and they go well with fruits stirred in each morning.

Here's the recipe for 9 servings:

2 cups steel cut oats
1 cup ground flax seed
½ cup light olive oil
2 Tbs cinnamon
1 Tbs ginger
½ tsp salt
8 cups water

Put it all in a large (not non-stick) pot and bring to a boil, stirring frequently at first. Cover the pot. Reduce heat to a slow boil for 30 minutes, stirring occasionally. Cool 15-30 minutes, divide evenly into 9 1-cup containers and freeze the containers (or refrigerate those to be eaten in the next few days).

Daily, microwave one serving in a non-plastic bowl, stir in blueberries or a chopped up plum and a few tablespoons of skim milk. Serve on the hot side of warm with a glass of skim milk.

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