food

It's January 2019 and no-one has any idea what to eat.

Is it just me, or has breakfast become paralysingly complicated?

Is it because it’s January, and even Vegemite toast is up for reinvention?

Is it because no-one – but no-one – is truly a morning person?

Is it because food hasn’t been just food since we started taking pictures of it and uploading it to Instagram as #cheatday #cleaneating #ketotime #fodporn? Especially breakfast, the day’s most Instagrammed meal.

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But here we are and it is January, and I am basic, so, like you, I am trying to “eat healthy” in 2019, to honour the body I’m hoping to live a long time yet in/not have to buy a whole new wardrobe/leap out of bed feeling amazing with eyes that shine like the stars.

So, to breakfast, and obviously, because it’s January, my favourite Vegemite toast is out.

I would have a green smoothie but that feels very 2017. And anyway, I don’t trust my blender. It seems to only have a “splatter and burn” setting.

I was thinking about having an Acai bowl, maybe with a slice of banana. But I don’t know how to say acai, and it looks like Nutella, and really, that’s just cruel.

I was considering going full Atkins, in a nod to ’90s retro cool, but everyone says living on bacon and eggs gives you bad breath (and heart problems) which isn’t something Jennifer Aniston ever mentioned.

A fruit plate might have been okay back in 2014, but now that’s a lot of sugar and sugar is the new sitting, which is the new smoking, so the kiwifruit’s out.

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Yoghurt, ditto. And anyway, the low-fat stuff is worse for you than the full-fat stuff, apparently, and that delicious Greek stuff is just like eating double cream. And yum, double cream.

Porridge would be okay, but I’ve read somewhere that the instant one is as bad as junk food and who’s got the time (or the desire to wash pans) that the real-deal requires?

I could have a Vegemite smear on half an avocado but apparently, we’ve all been fooled by avocados, people, and our eyes are about to be opened, Bird Box style, to the fact it’s just green butter. Someone told me that.

A lot of the healthiest people I know (and when I say know, I mean follow on Instagram) swear by warm water with lemon first thing, but seriously, that just feels too close to a day-old gin and tonic and it’s Dry January for God’s sake, don’t torment a woman.

Then there’s bee-pollen. That’s important, apparently, in really helping your  little light shine, but it’s also about $45 a gram, and… well, it’s POLLEN. I don’t want to deprive the birds. #vegan

NOURISH BOWLS! Double TAP if you love them ❤️ ( pic source unknown ) . I’m OBSESSED- I feel Buddha bowls or nourish bowls are a trend right now and I’m so on that band wagon ! Such an easy simply fun way to make your taste buds SING and get so many nutrients IN! . ????So HOW do we make them? . Choose a base ( spinach ????, lettuce , rice , quinoa , cauliflower rice , zoodles) . Choose a protein ( chicken???? , tofu , fish, eggs ????whatever you like ) . Hearty veggies ( sweet potato????, pumpkin, carrot , zucchini , broccoli ????) roasted is always my FAV ???????? . I also love adding pickled onions , gherkins , fermented veggies ) . Choose a healthy fat ????- avacado , olive oil , flaxseed oil . . Add ins – hemp seeds , nutritional yeast , pumpkin seeds etc ) . A dressing ( apple cider vinegar, home made dressings using oils and herbs and spices ) . Then ENJOY!!???????? . What’s your FAV combo? Or FAV meal in general? Comment BELOW! Also let me know if you want more ideas like this!???? . #ashybines #nourishbowls #healthy #health

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Turning to the “experts” for guidance isn’t help, either. Paleo Pete Evans doesn’t have breakfast until 2pm most days, and then he just eats whatever he wants. Well, as long as whatever he wants doesn’t involve dairy, sugar, grains or lentils. Lentils are so evil.

And fitness queen Ashy Bines is Keto now – which is like being on a diet that the Paleo people think is too hard – so her breakfast might include bread that’s made of cream cheese and some bacon made from cauliflower.

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I found some vegan walnut sausages which would come in very handy for those times I’m trying to convince my other half that our son’s had an “accident”. Oh, how we’d laugh.

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Instagram also helpfully turned up some chickpea pancakes and a former Bachelor contestant reminding me that really, a water fast was the only way to go. So the ideal breakfast was no breakfast at all. Which is disappointing, but deliciously Emperor’s New Clothes.

Which is where we are now. Common sense about food – everything in moderation, put more veggies on your plate, never eat anything bigger than your head – is pushed out of our minds every January and with every scroll of our Insta feeds. What rushes in is the promise of a silver bullet – just cut out this entire food group and you’ll instantly be happier/healthier/half your size/drink this bin juice and you’ll gain 10 IQ points and a dream job – and a whole lot of noise.

Food-as-identity is part of our culture now. So the question is less “What Do I Want For Breakfast?” and more “What Does My Breakfast Say About Me?”

And right now, what my breakfast is saying is, “You wish you were eating Vegemite toast right now.”

Is January over yet?

Holly Wainwright has written two novels about bad influencers – The Mummy Bloggers and How To Be Perfect – and you can buy them, here

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