Are you looking for a new and nutritionally balanced breakfast idea? I recently received a pin from one of my Pinterest friends. It was titled, “Meet the New Power Couples” and pictured a jar of “Overnight Oatmeal” in a mason jar. She asked if I had seen it and wondered if it was close to the 40-30-30 ratio. So as usual, I crunched the numbers and found that the added carbohydrates from fresh fruit plus a little extra fat from nuts or raw coconut was all it took to turn the Overnight Oatmeal into a delicious 40-30-30 nutritious breakfast.
It seems that Overnight Oatmeal is fairly popular, with a wide variety of recipes on the internet. My 40-30-30 balanced version is simply Greek yogurt, raw oatmeal, chia seeds, fresh fruit and nuts. Plain Greek yogurt is a nutritious, complete protein food that also provides calcium and beneficial live bacteria. Raw, old-fashioned oatmeal is a slow burning carbohydrate that packs a rich source of heart healthy soluble and insoluble fiber to help regulate the body’s insulin and glucose levels. Chia seeds are an unprocessed, whole-grain, nutrient-dense food that has been shown to slow the conversion of carbohydrates into simple sugar, which can help to control blood sugar. They are high in fiber, vitamins and minerals, and also one of the richest plant sources of the Omega 3 fatty acids that can support heart health. They also help with hydration by absorbing ten times their weight in water. You probably already know that blueberries are a superfood, packed with antioxidants galore. Finally, macadamia nuts are high in heart healthy mono-unsaturated fat and one of my favorite choices when you need to add a little extra fat to balance a meal and help you feel full longer.
Try my Overnight Oatmeal recipe below for a delicious breakfast or lunch.
7 ounces 2% Greek Yogurt
1/4 cup dry, uncooked oatmeal
1 teaspoon chia seeds
1/3 cup fresh blueberries
1 teaspoon chopped raw macadamia nuts
Directions: In a bowl with a lid or a mason jar, mix together Greek yogurt, oatmeal, and chia seeds. Add blueberries and top with macadamia nuts. Cover and refrigerate overnight.
Calories: 300 Carbohydrates - 31 grams, Protein - 23 grams, Fat - 10 grams
I always like to recommend following a recipe so you get as close as possible to the 40-30-30 ratio when preparing meals, which will help to ensure the best hormonal response to the meal. You can also modify the recipe to create a variety of Overnight Oatmeal flavors by substituting the same amount (1/3 cup) of any low-glycemic fruit for the blueberries such as raspberries, blackberries, strawberries, peaches, apples, or even unsweetened applesauce. You can also substitute the macadamia nuts with the same amount (1 teaspoon) of any other nut or even try unsweetened coconut. If you want to sweeten it up a bit, try a few drops of liquid stevia. And just like eating a Balance Bar with 180 to 200 calories per bar as a small meal or snack, uniquely portioned meals allow you to keep track of the amount of calories you consume at each meal.
When you start your day with a perfectly balanced power breakfast, you’ll be on your way to a perfectly balanced, fat-burning day.
Joyce Daoust is a Certified Nutritionist, Balance Bar® spokesperson and national best-selling co-author of THE FORMULA, A Personalized 40-30-30 Weight Loss Program.