(Family Features) Making the most of your breakfast may be one of the best things you do all day. "Research shows that people who make smart choices at breakfast are more likely to make smart choices throughout the day, and have healthier diets overall," says Wendy Bazilian, DrPH, MA, RD and author of The SuperFoodsRxDiet.
A smart breakfast choice starts with the addition of spices and herbs, which are a delicious source of natural antioxidants. For example, just a half-teaspoon of ground cinnamon has more antioxidants than three and a half cups of fresh spinach.
"Regularly adding spices and herbs to your go-to breakfast fare is a simple step that can add up to big benefits - and, they're tasty, says Bazilian. "Try stirring cinnamon into a fruit smoothie or sprinkling black pepper on eggs."
To inspire healthier breakfasts whenever or wherever you're eating, the McCormick Kitchens have created easy tips to wake up your morning meal with spices and herbs, and add an antioxidant bonus.
At Home - Weekday:
- Toast & Spread: Spread this on your morning toast instead of sugary jams and jellies. Mix 1 package (8 ounces) Neufchâtel cheese (1/3 less fat than cream cheese), softened, 2 tablespoons honey and 1/2 teaspoon McCormick Ground Cinnamon until well blended. (Serves 8) Antioxidant Bonus: One serving of Cinnamon flavored spread adds more antioxidants than 1/3 cup of fresh spinach.
- Scrambled Eggs: Sprinkle 1/4 teaspoon McCormick Ground Black Pepper on your scrambled eggs. Antioxidant Bonus: 1/4 teaspoon Ground Black Pepper adds more antioxidants than 1/2 cup chopped watermelon
On the Go:
- Smoothie: Place 1 small ripe banana, sliced, 1 cup frozen strawberries or blueberries, 1 container (6 ounces) vanilla Greek-style yogurt, 1/2 cup orange juice, 1 tablespoon honey and 1/2 teaspoon McCormick Ground Cinnamon in blender. Blend on high speed until smooth. Antioxidant Bonus: 1/2 teaspoon of Ground Cinnamon adds more antioxidants than 4 medium carrots.
- Yogurt: Mix 1 container (6 ounces) plain or vanilla Greek-style yogurt, 1 tablespoon maple syrup or honey, 1/2 teaspoon McCormick Ground Cinnamon and 1/4 teaspoon McCormick Ground Ginger. Antioxidant Bonus: 1/2 teaspoon Ground Cinnamon and 1/4 teaspoon of Ground Ginger add more antioxidants than 1 1/2 cups chopped sweet red pepper.
At the Office
- Oatmeal: Sprinkle McCormick Ground Cinnamon on your morning oatmeal to perk up your day. For an extra flavor twist, try adding dried cherries with sliced almonds or walnuts. Antioxidant Bonus: 1/4 teaspoon Ground Cinnamon adds more antioxidants than 1/2 cup sliced kiwi.
At Home - Weekend:
- Breakfast Burritos: Beat 4 eggs, 1/4 cup reduced-fat milk, 1/2 teaspoon McCormick Oregano Leaves and 1/4 teaspoon each McCormick Garlic Powder and Ground Black Pepper. Sauté 1 cup chopped vegetables in 1 tablespoon hot olive oil in nonstick skillet. Add egg mixture; scramble. Stir in 1 cup shredded reduced fat cheese. Spoon into 4 whole wheat tortillas. Antioxidant Bonus: 1/4 teaspoon Oregano adds more antioxidants than 1/2 cup broccoli.
Visit www.spicesforhealth.com for additional breakfast tips and recipes.