Special treat: sweet, sugary breakfast foods

It’s still March Break here, so our mornings have been leisurely and relaxed. I decided to make French toast for breakfast the other day.

French toast, full of eggs, milk, cinnamon-sugar and maple syrup, is not a standard breakfast food for us. Neither are pancakes. We all tend to feel a fatigue-ish slump halfway through our day if we consume sugary or highly processed products first thing in the morning. So muffins, pastry, or sweetened cereals are usually out. No pancakes or French toast on school mornings, either.

But during March break, no one gets up early. We lounge around in pjs, have coffee and watch cartoons.

That morning, I had a serving of French toast too, with extra cinnamon. On an empty stomach, even. (Well no, I had water and coffee first.) It was delicious and a treat, but to me it felt more like dessert than breakfast. I knew I’d suffer, later, when the slump will hit me.

And did it ever. By 10 am I was on the couch barely able to keep my eyes open. Fatigue is an understatement…I was so tired I actually napped until noon!

I should know better. When I was in my mid 20s, I had such severe Hypoglycemia that I fainted while being tested at the doctor’s office.

Hypoglycemia is a condition known as low blood sugar. If the blood sugar drops to dangerously low levels, the symptoms vary from clumsiness, trouble talking, confusion, and severe fatigue. In rare cases it can lead to loss of consciousness, or worse. I often had shaky hands (like a diabetic), more hunger and cravings for sugar, and a very heavy, lethargic feeling of weakness in my body. Barely able to lift my arms, or walk. So tired.

I changed my dietary habits then, and eating protein for breakfast has saved me from this endless napping I used to do. Napping induced from the Hypoglycemia.

The trick is to consume something that is mostly protein, and if carbs are required, complex carbs. Poached eggs (I have a microwaveable container that makes them in 46 seconds) on whole grain toast works, with a slice of bacon (also not a staple), ham or other types of deli meat. Sometimes I use a whole wheat English muffin, and make a portable egg-muffin sandwich (great to eat on the go if you’re late and are bound to sit in traffic for a bit).

A protein-type breakfast tends to hold us over longer. There doesn’t seem to be that mid-morning craving for a sweet snack or drink, either. My son says that since he’s started eating the egg-muffins for breakfast he is able to hold on till lunch without needing to snack on some processed crap at recess.

Sugar, it seems, causes our brains to signal for more. Consume some, crave more, eat more, vicious cycle.

Go sniff the breath of your children during late mornings and try to determine if they had too much sugar for breakfast. My daughter sometimes smells almost like a diabetic…we know to cut back on her beloved toast with honey on those days and I give her probiotic greek yogurt instead, plain with fresh berries perhaps. Or scrambled eggs (she won’t eat poached). Something that isn’t a white carb or has sugar in it. Almond or peanut butter even…on gluten free crackers maybe. Or oatmeal…The trouble is she prefers sweetened porridge, with lots of maple syrup, so that wouldn’t work on those days…If she would eat hummus, that would be another option.

It’s all so challenging.

The nap after the French toast didn’t feel refreshing. I woke up groggy and lethargic and realized that the tone was set for the day now. I can’t turn back the clock and forgo the French toast. What I should have done was have a poached egg first, something with protein, and then have one slice of French toast. I probably wouldn’t have reacted quite as badly as I did with all that sugar on an empty stomach.

What do you make for breakfast? Do you skip it all together or eat a snack prior to lunch? Is your breakfast routine habitual or do you have other reasons for choosing what to eat, or not eat, prior to commencing your day?


12 thoughts on “Special treat: sweet, sugary breakfast foods

  1. I passed my hypoglycemia onto both our children. When our son was 15 he actually feinted and had a seizure due to his low blood sugar. All three of us try to stay on top of it, but even when we are eating correctly, you just never know when it will hit. We have passed out, vomited and really struggle to keep an even keel sometimes. It really sucks since we are all very active and it can be scary, especially for my hubby. He has to take care of us sometimes😊. That nap after a crash is not refreshing! Hang in there💕

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Yes. I sometimes see signs in the kids too, and we’re trying hard to make allowances for the stuff they want (junk) occasionally. It’s about listening to your body, a skill not easily be accepted by children but we’re trying. 😋

      Liked by 1 person

    1. It’s all good, sorry it took so long for me to respond, I was at…take a guess….a rink. lol…I will be spending some time going over this post and look into things, I am not currently on pinterest. Thanks for including me and my blog!! Will be in touch. I’ll send you my email address in a DM in twitter if you want to chat privately. 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  2. I might try this out. I often have days when I can’t think of words – it had never occurred to me that there might be a simple explanation (other than I’m a bit thick sometimes lol)

    Liked by 1 person

  3. We have discovered the same thing. If my kids do not have protein at breakfast, they often feel lightheaded in the morning while at school. We have make protein mandatory at breakfast (egg, greek yogurt, cheese or peanut butter are the favourites. GF pancakes with PB or Nutella are a favourite.

    if we have French toast, I make sure to have bacon and or sausage as a side to add the protein. Scones get served with yogurt.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. It’s all in creating a new habit, isn’t it. I love Greek yogurt with nuts and berries, or flax and pumpkin seeds.

      Sadly we were out of bacon because that would have gone well with the French toast.


      1. Made a new recipe on the weekend from the yum and yummier cookbook. It was carrot cake pancakes that I cooked as waffles. The topping is Greek yogurt with maple syrup and orange zest, so the protein is there too. They were very tasty and have veggies too.

        Liked by 1 person

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