Were you one of the many people that bought your Halloween candy in advance and told yourself you would open “just one package” during the week before the holiday.  Then, this one bag turned into 2, 3..or you having to go out and buy a second batch because it “somehow” disappeared?!  It’s about all things in balance, right? (wink).   Last night I wanted to make something so we could have a nutritious breakfast that would stabilize blood sugar, strengthen the immune system, and provide the energy we need. So I made “Overnight Oats”.  I never made them before, but recently got the recipe from a friend and wanted to give it try.  If you make them another way, or have a great nutritious breakfast recipe; leave a comment below!

 Here is a picture of the finished product:
image-1
A delicious nutritious breakfast!
I’m passing on the recipe to you, and including some facts about the nutritional value. This particular recipe including the blueberries and walnuts makes 2 servings; Each serving is approximately 350 calories depending on your add ins.
Overnight Oats
1 cup gluten free oats
1 tablespoon coconut oil
1 tablespoon chia seeds
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 cup unsweetened almond milk
1 tablespoon maple syrup
Add ins:  I used blueberries and walnuts.  But you can use apples and cinnamon; raisins, nut butters, sliced banana, coconut, cacao etc..I put it in mason jars in the refrigerator overnight, and we enjoyed it for breakfast this morning; and there’s enough for an afternoon snack, too.
What’s great about this recipe:
32% RDA iron
36% RDA calcium
There is no cholesterol.
It’s very low in sodium,
It’s high in vitamin B6.
Oat flakes in wooden bowl from above on wooden background

Oats: 

Oatmeal is an awesome way to start the day.  It boosts energy, supports heart health, helps lower the risk of type 2 diabetes.  Oatmeal has been proven to help stabilize blood sugar.  Oats contain anti-oxidants and can boost your immune system.
 these-chia
 Chia Seeds:

This is the first time I’ve ever bought them and they have been trendy for quite awhile now.  They come from South America, and were important food for the Aztecs and Mayans who ate them to stay strong.  Chia is actually a Mayan word for strength.  And, yes..they are the same type of seeds that are in those Chia pets!

 Chia seeds improve certain blood markers which lower the risk of heart disease. These seeds reduce blood glucose level, improve endothelial function, decrease inflammation, coagulation, fibrinolysis and iron status.
1 oz. of Chia Seeds contains:
11 grams of Fiber
4 grams of Protein
9 grams of fat (5 of these are Omega 3 fats)
30% RDA Manganese
30% RDA Magnesium
27% RDA Phosphorus
They are high in calcium and rich in anti-oxidants.
Walnut in the cracked shell on the table

Walnuts:

Walnuts contain anti-inflammatory omega-3 essential fatty acids, in the form of alpha-linolenic acid (ALA). Walnuts are a very good source of manganese and copper.

Selective focus on the front blueberry

Blueberries:
Blueberries contain fiber, potassium, folate, vitamin C, vitamin B6 and phytonutrient content which all support heart health.
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Mind/Body Connection:
Many people aren’t aware of the important link between nutrition and mental health, although the field of nutritional neuroscience is an emerging discipline. Nutritional factors are intertwined with thoughts, feelings, and behavior.  For example, several studies have shown that deficiencies in omega 3 fatty acids, vitamin B (e.g., folate) and magnesium are linked to depression.  According to a study reported in Neuropsychobiology, ( Benton D, Haller J, Fordy J. Vitamin supplementation for one year improves mood. 1995;32:98–105.supplementation of nine vitamins, 10 times in excess of normal recommended dietary allowance (RDA) for 1 year improved mood in both men and women.
I find this emerging field to be fascinating, particularly as a psychotherapist.  We don’t include anything in our evaluations and assessments about a patient’s diet or their particular eating patterns/habits unless they are being evaluated for eating disorder treatment.  Imagine the possibilities for application of some of this new research.  Clearly, there are often multiple factors involved for those who are struggling with mental health issues, but most definitely there is a connection between what we put into our bodies and how we think and feel.  
Good nutrition is an important component when
Creating Your (physical and mental) Health.