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No Time For Breakfast? These 10 Easy And Healthy Overnight Oat Recipes Can Help You With It!

No Time For Breakfast? These 10 Easy And Healthy Overnight Oat Recipes Can Help You With It!

It’s not just moms who are busy in the morning. We’ve all got to start eating better! These days, nobody has time for the most important meal of the day. Yes, you should listen to what your mother told you (so should I) and get everything ready the night before. But do we? Well, here are 10 easy ways to do just that, at least for breakfast, with overnight oats.

What is that? Overnight oats are just what they sound like: overnight recipes for oats. It’s uncooked oatmeal soaked overnight (or at least a few hours) in liquid, which it soaks up by morning, making it ready-to-eat. For less-mushy oats, use less liquid. For more-mushy oats, use more liquid. You can use toppings to beat the bank or eat it just like it is, and any way in between.

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How to make basic Overnight Oat?

Let’s break it down, starting with the basics. Here’s what you need for the base.

EQUAL amounts of (I recommend one-third to one-half cup of each):

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  • Raw rolled oats or steel oats (NOT the instant stuff)
  • Milk (almond milk or other milk-product/milk-substitute – water may be used too)
  • Yogurt (Greek can be substituted, or yogurt can be left out if you don’t have any)

Add in layers or stir in (before or after refrigeration, usually a half-cup or more of whatever):

  • Other stuff you like to eat like fruits, raisins, nuts, seeds, granola (things will get soggy, so save ingredients you like crunchy – nuts, cereals – to add in the morning or right before you eat it)
  • Spices, extracts or herbs you have handy (cinnamon and vanilla are tasty classics, chia and flax seeds are healthy too)

Don’t forget a bowl, jar, mug or other container (even an avocado or cantaloupe shell) to keep in the fridge (I like small to medium mason jars with lids for at home, lightweight plastic containers with lids for travel)

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Overnight oats can be eaten cold from the fridge or heated up, as long as you use a microwave safe container and stir before eating to mix in “hot spots.”

They can stay in the fridge for up to 2 days, but that is it. Only make one or two days ahead.

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Here are just a few variations you can make – get creative and use your favorites!

Mixed Berries Overnight Oat

    Stir in a half-cup each of strawberries & blueberries for the perfect marriage of fruit to pair with your overnight oats.

    Blueberry muffin Overnight Oat

      For a New England favorite, stir in blueberries and add a touch of lemon zest (don’t skimp on the lemon zest!).

      Strawberry and cream Overnight Oat

        For a creamy delicious start to your day, layer or stir in 1-2 Tbsp flax seeds, maple syrup and frozen strawberries.

        Peaches and cream overnight oats

          Put some sweet in your morning when you layer or stir peaches into your overnight oats.

          Tropical Style Overnight Oats

            Give breakfast a tropical twist any day when you stir in mango & pineapple.

            Cocoa Nib & Pomegranate Overnight Oats

              Worth all the work, pomegranate seeds and cocoa nibs (2 tsp), vanilla extract (1 tsp) make simple yet delicious overnight oats.

              Apple Cinnamon Overnight Oats

                Overnight oats with apple slices and a pinch of cinnamon might be my favorite for fall.

                Peanut Butter & Jelly Overnight Oats

                  Feeling tired of the same old oats? Get crazy and stir in some peanut butter and your favorite jam !

                  Maple Bacon Overnight Oats

                    Go savory with your overnight oats and stir in crispy bacon ; I like to replace the syrup with shredded cheese (this is best heated up in the am)

                    Avocado and banana Overnight Oat

                      For Hispanic-style overnight oats, stir in avocado; instead of banana, try some fresh parsley with it.

                      Oats are the classic breakfast food. Overnight oats are simply delicious food-to-go, and who knew, they’re good for you too! Maybe you have some help getting the kids up and going in the morning. If not, these recipes are literally simple enough the kids can do without help. In fact, what a great idea for kids’ breakfast too. No mumble and grumble about nothing to eat when your kid sees these on the top shelf. Good morning!

                      Featured photo credit: Shutterstock via pixabay.com

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                      Joan Lowell

                      Educator, Writer

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                      Last Updated on November 9, 2020

                      10 Real Reasons Why Breaking Bad Habits Is So Difficult

                      10 Real Reasons Why Breaking Bad Habits Is So Difficult

                      Bad habits expose us to suffering that is entirely avoidable. Unfortunately, breaking bad habits is difficult because they are 100% dependent on our mental and emotional state.

                      Anything we do that can prove harmful to us is a bad habit – drinking, drugs, smoking, procrastination, poor communication are all examples of bad habits. These habits have negative effects on our physical, mental, and emotional health.

                      Humans are hardwired to respond to stimuli and to expect a consequence of any action. This is how habits are acquired: the brain expects to be rewarded a certain way under certain circumstances. How you initially responded to certain stimuli is how your brain will always remind you to behave when the same stimuli are experienced.

                      If you visited the bar close to your office with colleagues every Friday, your brain will learn to send you a signal to stop there even when you are alone and eventually not just on Fridays. It will expect the reward of a drink after work every day, which can potentially lead to a drinking problem.

                      Kicking negative behavior patterns and steering clear of them requires a lot of willpower, and there are many reasons why breaking bad habits is so difficult.

                      1. Lack of Awareness or Acceptance

                      Breaking a bad habit is not possible if the person who has it is not aware that it is a bad one.

                      Many people will not realize that their communication skills are poor or that their procrastination is affecting them negatively, or even that the drink they had as a nightcap has now increased to three.

                      Awareness brings acceptance. Unless a person realizes on their own that a habit is bad, or someone manages to convince them of the same, there is very little chance of the habit being kicked.

                      2. No Motivation

                      Going through a divorce, not being able to cope with academic pressure, and falling into debt are instances that can bring a profound sense of failure with them. A person going through these times can fall into a cycle of negative thinking where the world is against them and nothing they can do will ever help, so they stop trying altogether.

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                      This give-up attitude is a bad habit that just keeps coming around. Being in debt could make you feel like you are failing at maintaining your home, family, and life in general.

                      If you are looking to get out of a rut and feel motivated, take a look at this article: Why Is Internal Motivation So Powerful (And How to Find It)

                      3. Underlying Psychological Conditions

                      Psychological conditions such as depression and ADD can make it difficult to start breaking bad habits.

                      A depressed person may find it difficult to summon the energy to cook a healthy meal, resulting in food being ordered in or consumption of packaged foods. This could lead to a habit that adversely affects health and is difficult to overcome.

                      A person with ADD may start to clean their house but get distracted soon after, leaving the task incomplete, eventually leading to a state where it is acceptable to live in a house that is untidy and dirty.

                      The fear of missing out (FOMO) is very real to some people. Obsessively checking their social media and news sources, they may believe that not knowing of something as soon as it is published can be catastrophic to their social standing.

                      4. Bad Habits Make Us Feel Good

                      One of the reasons it is difficult to break habits is that a lot of them make us feel good.[1]

                      We’ve all been there – the craving for a tub of ice cream after a breakup or a casual drag on a joint, never to be repeated until we miss how good it made us feel. We succumb to the craving for the pleasure felt while indulging in it, cementing it as a habit even while we are aware it isn’t good for us.

                      Overeating is a very common bad habit. Just another pack of chips, a couple of candies, a large soda… none of these are necessary for survival. We want them because they give us comfort. They’re familiar, they taste good, and we don’t even notice when we progress from just one extra slice of pizza to four.

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                      You can read this article to learn more: We Do What We Know Is Bad for Us, Why?

                      5. Upward Comparisons

                      Comparisons are a bad habit that many of us have been exposed to since we were children. Parents might have compared us to siblings, teachers may have compared us to classmates, and bosses could compare us to past and present employees.

                      The people who have developed the bad habit of comparing themselves to others have been given incorrect yardsticks for measurement from the start.

                      These people will always find it difficult to break out of this bad habit because there will always be someone who has it better than they do: a better house, better car, better job, higher income and so on.

                      Research shows that in the age of social media, social comparisons are much easier and can ultimately harm self-esteem if scrolling becomes a bad habit[2].

                      6. No Alternative

                      This is a real and valid reason why breaking bad habits is difficult. These habits could fulfill a need that may not be met any other way.

                      Someone who has physical or psychological limitations, such as a disability or social anxiety, may find it hard to quit obsessive content consumption for better habits.

                      Alternately, a perfectly healthy person may be unable to quit smoking because alternates are just not working out.

                      Similarly, a person who bites their nails when anxious may be unable to relieve stress in any other socially accepted manner.

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                      7. Stress

                      As mentioned above, anything that stresses us out can lead to adopting and cementing an unhealthy habit.

                      When a person is stressed about something, it is easy for bad habits to form because the mental resources required to fight them are not available[3].

                      We often see a person who had previously managed to kick a bad habit fall back into the old ways because they felt their stress couldn’t be managed any other way.

                      If you need some help reducing stress, check out the following video for some healthy ways to get started:

                      8. Sense of Failure

                      People looking to kick bad habits may feel a strong sense of failure because it’s just that difficult.

                      Dropping a bad habit usually means changes in lifestyle that people may be unwilling to make, or these changes might not be easy to make in spite of the will to make them.

                      Overeaters need to empty their house of unhealthy food, resist the urge to order in, and not pick up their standard grocery items from the store. Those who drink too much need to avoid the bars or even people who drink often.

                      If such people slip even once with a glass of wine, or a smoke, or a bag of chips, they tend to be excessively harsh on themselves and feel like failures.

                      9. The Need to Be All-New

                      People who are looking to break bad habits feel they need to re-create themselves in order to break themselves of their bad habits, while the truth is the complete opposite.

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                      These people actually need to go back to who they were before they developed the bad habit and try to create good habits from there.

                      10. Force of Habit

                      Humans are creatures of habit, and having familiar, comforting outcomes for daily triggers helps us maintain a sense of balance in our lives.

                      Consider people who are used to lighting up a cigarette every time they talk on the phone or eating junk food when watching TV. They will always associate a phone call with a puff on the cigarette and screen time with eating.

                      These habits, though bad, are a source of comfort to them, as is meeting with those people they indulge in these bad habits with.

                      Final Thoughts

                      These are the main reasons why breaking bad habits is difficult, but the good news is that the task is not impossible. Breaking habits takes time, and you’ll need to put long-term goals in place to replace a bad habit with a good one.

                      There are many compassionate, positive and self-loving techniques to kick bad habits. The internet is rich in information regarding bad habits, their effects and how to overcome them, while professional help is always available for those who feel they need it.

                      More on Breaking Bad Habits

                      Featured photo credit: NORTHFOLK via unsplash.com

                      Reference

                      [1] After Skool: Why Do Bad Habits Feel SO GOOD?
                      [2] Psychology of Popular Media Culture: Social comparison, social media, and self-esteem.
                      [3] Stanford Medicine: Examining how stress affects good and bad habits

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