What's for breakfast?

If you eliminate wheat from breakfast and otherwise adhere to a low-carbohydrate dietary approach, what is there to eat for breakfast?

If you take out English muffins, bagels, all breakfast cereals, pancakes, waffles, and toast, what's left to eat?

Actually, there's plenty left to eat. It just may not look like the traditional American notion of "breakfast." (The traditional idea of breakfast was is, in part, due to the legacy of Dr. John Harvey Kellogg, who, in the latter part of the 19th century, ran a sanitarium in Battle Creek Michigan. He and his brother, Will Keith Kellogg, discovered the idea of turning grains into flakes, the birth of the breakfast cereal. Subscribe to the idea of breakfast cereal for breakfast and you subscribe to the ideas of a man who would administer four enemas for you today to cure your cancer or rheumatism.)

Here are a few ideas. By no means is this meant to be a comprehensive list, just a starting point for a few new breakfast food ideas.

--Eggs--Of course, eat the yolk. Eat three yolks. Scrambled, "fried," (not really deep-fried, of course), hard-boiled, poached, as an omelette. Add pesto, olive oil, vegetables, mushrooms, salsa.

--Ground flaxseed--As a hot cereal with your choice of water, milk (not my favorite because of insulin effects; the fat is immaterial), full-fat soy milk (yeah, yeah, I know), unsweetened almond milk. Add walnuts, blueberries, etc. Ground flaxseed is the only grain I know of that contains no digestible carbohydrates.

--Lunch and dinner--Yes, if you cannot have breakfast foods for breakfast, then have lunch and dinner, meaning incorporating foods you ordinarily regard as lunch and dinner foods into your day's first meal. This means salads, leftover chicken from last night, soup, raw vegetables dipped in hummus or guacamole, stir fry, etc.

--Cheese--For something quick, grab a chunk of gouda or emmentaler along with a handful of raw almonds, walnuts, or pecans. Because of the excess acidity of cheese (along with meats, among the most acidifying of foods), I usually try to include something like a raw pepper or avocado, foods that are net alkaline.

--Avocados--Cut in half, scoop out contents. They're quick and delicious, when available.

I hesitate to mention it, but I sometimes will have tofu, cubed and flavored with whatever is available--soy sauce, miso, pickled vegetables. My mother was Japanese, so I'm comfortable with this, though many people are not.

Anyway, that's a partial list that nonetheless can get you started on a wheat-free, low-carb breakfast.

If you are just starting out, you will notice a number of fundamental changes. You may first experience the characteristic "withdrawal" effect: mental fog and fatigue that lasts about a week. Energy then picks up, often substantially. This is followed by gradually reduced appetite: You will be far less hungry. You will require less food, less often, since appetite will be driven by physiologic need, not the appetite-stimulating properties of wheat (and cornstarch, high-fructose cornsyrup and sucrose).

By the way, do not skip breakfast unless it's part of an occasional fasting effort. Skip breakfast, wind down metabolism, get fat. I am impressed at how consistent skipping breakfast backfires in those who think that it helps you control weight.

I also welcome any suggestions on what you eat as part of your wheat-free, low-carb breakfast. (Thanks for the great suggestions on the last blog post, Anna.)