Friday, February 5, 2016

Flavorful Friday: I'm Addicted...

Hi Friends!

It's official, I am addicted...

I'm addicted to overnight oats...and coffee...

First things first, let's talk coffee.  I love coffee.  I drink it strong and black, and it has some wonderful health benefits!  The issue I have, is that I do not like having a need to rely on any substance (healthy or otherwise...) to feel good.  By this, I mean "I have to eat/drink X today, or else my whole day is thrown off".  Now, I do know that I tend to overindulge in hot caffeinated beverages during the winter months, but I don't enjoy the caffeine withdrawal headaches.  So here's a little side story for you:

While sitting at my desk yesterday afternoon (approx 1pm), I just finished lunch and felt a little headache in my right temple.  "Hmmm...", I thought to myself, "I must need more water, I did have a high fiber lunch..." (Note:  Yes, dietitians really talk like this to themselves!!!)  So, I walked to the water cooler, filled up my cup and drank it down.  Nope.  Didn't need water.  I then proceeded to begin reflecting on my food and beverage choices:  overnight oats, bananas, and 6oz coffee for breakfast, 2 cups of herbal tea while working, then whole grain pasta with beans and avo for lunch.  Nothing out of the ordinary...but wait!  I usually drink black tea at work, instead of herbal!  It's the caffeine!  And BAM, I instantly got a taste for a hot cup of coffee.

Caffeine addiction is crazy!  Typically, I have 1 cup of coffee and 1-2 cups of black tea while at work.  Guess I was not being very mindful of how much caffeine I was actually consuming...So now, I am going caffeine free for awhile to rid myself of these headaches.

Let me know in the comments if this is something you've gone through before!!

Currently, my go to breakfast this whole week has been my SECRET recipe for overnight oats; and I've been LOVING it!!  In honor of National Wear Red Day to support raising awareness for heart disease, I thought I'd add in some berries.  Not just one type of berry mind you, but two!!  (Mostly because it is from my favorite bag of frozen fruit from Costco...)  This recipe has blueberries and strawberries; but feel free to use any darkly pigmented fruit you'd like.

The darker the fruit/veg, the more nutrients it has!  Berries, specifically, are loaded with antioxidants.  These little guys (antioxidants) help to fight off free radicals that can increase your chances of getting sick.  Think of them as a supercharger for your immune system!  Berries are also loaded with fiber, which helps keep you full and regular.  Another great health benefit of dark, juicy berries is that the antioxidants they house can also help with arthritis, age-related memory loss, inflammation, and eye health!  Talk about getting a lot for your dollar!

Because berries can spoil so quickly, I tend to prefer to buy them in bulk from the freezer section.  This way, I know they were picked at the peak of ripeness, flash frozen, and will stay fresh longer.  They are also typically less expensive this way.

Ok, are you ready to find out my SECRET recipe for overnight oats?!  Here's what you'll need:
  • 1/2 cup rolled oats
  • 1 cup frozen berries
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 1 Tbsp chia seeds
  • Enough unsweetened almond milk to cover the oats by a 1/2 inch or so
  • Maple syrup to taste
Now, put all the ingredients in a jar, cover, shake well and let it rest on your counter or in the fridge overnight.  (Note:  because I used thick, frozen strawberries, I left mine on the counter because as the berries thaw, it will keep the mixture cold.)

Sorry for the poor image quality, had to snap this one quickly...

Now all you need is a spoon!! 

I know, I know, this recipe isn't all that secret...but I definitely owe the amazing texture of these oats to my secret ingredient...chia seeds!  These seeds add great texture as well as protein and healthy fats!

What is your favorite berry?  Let me know in the comments!  Mine is definitely black berries, but I really love them all!!

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