The Perfect Breakfast?
Posted on 28th February 2018 at 17:08
Melon is a great breakfast food even during the winter months. With so many varieties to choose from you can ring the changes and benefit from a wide range of different nutrients.
It's winter and there's 4 inches of snow outside and I'm talking about having melon for breakfast. What's going on?
Good question really. Let me explain. I see a lot of people who enjoy a bowl of porridge for breakfast on a cold winter's day. There is often a problem with this when they add an 'acid' fruit to it, like blueberries for example, and the result is bloating and wind. They get disillusioned. This eating healthy lark doesn't always produce the expected results. If they'd have added a banana or some dates (both starch fruits) instead, then the combination would more likely have worked without any digestive distress. I'm a very big fan of 'food combining' (a way of eating which includes all the food groups but does not mix starches and proteins at the same meal and has a few other simple rules regarding eating fruits), I've worked with it since 1991 and had some very good results when introducing it to patients. Helping them get to grips with combining fruits with other foods is part of the process and can be a bit confusing in the early stages. I'm not going to go into details here as more info on food combining will shortly be available in my Resources section, and this blog is primarily about melons.
In 'food combining' terms melons are a slight anomaly. Due to their high water and natural sugar content they don't combine well with any other foods which means they are best eaten as a fruit meal in their own right. My favourite meal for eating just fruit and nothing else is breakfast, and it is in fact the perfect way to start the day. Breaking an overnight fast with fruit alone hydrates, cleanses and detoxifies the body. You may think that you will end up being hungry but before you dismiss the idea give it a try. If you do feel hungry then you can eat more fruit but I personally find that this isn't necessary. I always feel pleasantly full and energetic especially on the days when melon (in a regular-sized cereal bowl) is my fruit of choice, even in the winter.
Melon is the perfect fruit breakfast because there are so many different varieties to choose from. Although they are all similar in their calorie and carbohydrate content, the vitamin and mineral contents vary between each type. Watermelon for example is lower in vitamins and minerals than most other melons, but contains health boosting antioxidants such as lycopene that provide its red colour and are beneficial to the immune system.
Honeydew melon provides a good hit of vitamin C as does Cantaloupe which is also high in vitamin A, an important nutrient for good vision and enhanced immunity. My favourite at the moment though is Piel de Sapo, the Winter-Weather Melon. It's has a delicious honeydew/pear flavour and is a very good keeper. Cut melon should be refrigerated and I chop mine up and store it in a covered dish so I have breakfast ready and on hand for several days running.
A fresh melon is a wondrous thing.
However, like many other fruits these days, melon can be bought sliced and ready-prepared in plastic packaging which is not only environmentally unfriendly but also allows for chemicals (that do not have to be disclosed on the label because they are deemed as processing aids) to be added. Dipping cut fruit in a solution of citric acid and other unnamed ingredients adds around 21 days to the shelf life, and in the case of melons stops them oozing out their liquid and turning to mush. Any pre-prepared 'fresh' fruits and fruit salads sold in plastic will be processed in this way and these types of foods are becoming more and more common. Coffee shops and fast food chains as well as supermarkets now offer a whole host of dishes that contain pre-prepared fruits, and hotel and restaurant buffets serve them because they are cheap to buy in bulk and result in less wastage. The problem for the consumer is that beneficial nutrients are lost and the long term impact on our health is as yet unknown.
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