Most days, our morning routines veer much more on the “rushed and frantic” side of the spectrum than “peaceful and calm.” This leads to us doing things we might later regret—namely, skipping breakfast. You’ve heard it a million times before: Breakfast is the most important meal of the day. But why? Because, quite simply, what you fuel yourself with at the start of each day directly affects how you feel and what you crave and eat later on. “We pound coffee on an empty stomach and ride our caffeine high until it eventually crashes down all over us in the late morning,” says Kelly LeVeque, certified nutritionist and founder of Be Well by Kelly. “Starving and dehydrated by lunch, any attempt to keep it healthy goes out the window. We over-order and over-eat, launching ourselves into a food coma, and eventually find ourselves needing another caffeine fix—or, worse yet, the office candy jar—to make it through the day.”
This all hit a little too close to home, so we asked LeVeque a pressing question: If we only had time to eat one thing for breakfast each morning, what should it be? We’ll give you a hint—it’s definitely not cereal. Keep scrolling to find out her answer!
LeVeque says the best way to break the cycle of over-eating and poor food choices is to start every day with two surprising things: fat and protein. “It’s proven to help you eat less throughout the day and help you feel balanced and calm,” she says. The best (and easiest) way to get that fat and protein? A smoothie. “Smoothies are a great way to add hydration, antioxidants, vitamins, minerals, and greens to your diet easily and on the go,” she says. “Adding fiber will feed your healthy gut flora and help your body eliminate toxins easily, while the polyunsaturated fat and omega-3 fatty acids will help keep your skin glowing and cells hydrated.” She cites studies that prove women who start their day with protein not only feel more relaxed throughout the day but also eat less overall. But before you go about throwing everything in sight into your blender, know this—there is a method to this philosophy.
LeVeque shares a formula, which she has dubbed the BeWell Smoothie, that combines the perfect amount of ingredients to give your body the optimal nutrients it needs to sustain throughout the day—plus, it’s totally customizable. Here’s the recipe, straight from her blog.
#BeWell Smoothie Recipe
1 serving protein + 1 serving fiber + unlimited greens + 1/4 cup fructose + 2 tbsp. fat + liquid + superfood
Protein: “Look for a clean sprouted vegetarian protein or an organic grass fed whey.”
Fiber: “Raw fiber powder, chia seeds, flax seeds or avocado are great choices.”
Greens: “Get creative, anything green!”
Fruit/high-fructose vegetables: “Berries, lemons, limes, mango, banana, pears, peaches, beets or even carrots. Frozen fruit is a fun option to replace ice if you like your smoothie thick and chunky.”
Fat: “Avocado, coconut oil, MCT oil, nut butter, walnuts, cocoa butter, or ghee at room temperature.”
Liquid: “Water, almond milk, coconut water, cashew milk, flax milk, walnut milk, hemp milk or cold-pressed green juice.”
Superfoods: “Green powder, collagen, turmeric, bee pollen, goji berries, raw gluten-free granola, cacao nibs, ginger, chia seeds, sunflower seeds, coconut flakes, sea salt.”
Curious about ghee? Ancient Organics Organic Ghee ($20) is a good option for beginners.
Head over to Be Well by Kelly to see the recipe instructions, as well as LeVeque’s favorite flavor suggestions!