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Anti-breakfast food crusade/history question

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Old 10-21-2007, 12:24 PM   #1
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Default Anti-breakfast food crusade/history question

Hi Pals,
I've posted on other threads before about how I rebel against "breakfast food" for breakfast but for some reason today, I want to vent about it and ask a question. My question is: how did "breakfast foods" as a separate entitiy, ever come about?

No other animal as far as I know eats something different in the morning than they would do at any other time.

Breakfast food makes no sense to me. And there is not one traditional breakfast food that I like. So, I just eat dinner food in the morning. It is rarely a problem for me. The only time it is an inconvenience is if I am traveling, or like last weekend when I went to a spiritual retreat and found nothing to eat in the morning because it was all "breakfast food." No big deal, it does not kill me to wait until lunch time to eat now and then.

But still, I am perplexed and I just want someone to explain to me WHY it is that there are separate morning foods. I don't get it.

perfectly good whole grains, cooked = not breakfast food.
process them and add sweeteners and form them into nuggets or flakes and put into a cereal box = breakfast food.

baked potato = not breakfast food
shred the potato and cook it in grease to maximize surface area contact with grease = breakfast food.

just bread = not breakfast food
put bread into electric gizmo to burn it on the outside = breakfast food.

lean meats = not breakfast food
greasy bacon and sausage = breakfast food

sweet things like muffins and pancakes and fruit = breakfast food
vegetables = not breakfast food.

The only thing that doesn't follow this trend would be eggs. I don't think they are bad for you, I just don't like them. Unless they are devilled eggs, which are, for some unknown reason, not breafast food.

It can't be the "fast" reason. There are dinner foods that take no longer to prepare than some "breakfast foods." As far as premade convenience foods, there are things like Hot Pockets that make "breakfast" varieties that take the same 3 minutes in the microwave as the ones with broccoli and cheese in them that are the "lunch" varieties.

I just want someone to explain to me WHY. Was it from the restaurant industry, or army history, or what??? Sometimes it just bewilders the Detroit out of me (almost as bad as the H-place but not yet a cuss word.)

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Old 10-21-2007, 12:58 PM   #2
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I'm not a food anthropologist, so I can't really give you much of a history lesson in this regard, but I can tell you that food traditions and taboos are primarily culturally determined. There may have been a historical "reason" for some of them, but I think many of the reasons are mostly lost to history, and people just follow customs without really thinking about them. They eat for breakfast what they've always eaten for breakfast.

For an interesting look at what is eaten for breakfast in other countries, this is a neat webpage:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Breakfast


I think in the days before refrigeration, there probably was good reason for eating some foods such as cereals and eggs in the morning (because they could be stored without refrigeration). Meat couldn't be eaten, until it was caught, or bought in the marketplace (in some parts of the world, still a daily event).

There isn't any nutritional or dietetic reason for specific foods (unless you buy into food combining theory), so you can eat whatever you want to for breakfast. You can't escape other people thinking it's odd though. I ordered a blt for breakfast in a restaurant once, and the waitress was stumped, she had to ask the owner if it was ok. Now I know in some restaurants, they don't start the fryers or grills until later in the day, but they were already making toast and bacon. Someone just had to grab some lettuce and tomato from the fridge. I couldn't have "french fries" for breakfast, because they hadn't started the deep fryers, so I had hashbrowns instead (which hubby ate, because I didn't even want the potatoes).
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Old 10-21-2007, 01:20 PM   #3
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Thanks for the link, Colleen. I like some of the Asian breafast traditions mentioned.

You are right about people thinking it's odd! Once at a music festival in the morning I went to the Mexican food vendor booth and asked for a bean and cheese burrito. The food prep woman said, "we are only making breakfast burritoes right now." I asked what was in a breakfast burrito, and she said, "beans and cheese and eggs." I said, "I'd like a breakfast burrito without eggs." She made me one, seeming to understand the "hold the eggs" concept but not the concept of just wanting a bean and cheese burrito in the morning. (!!)
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Old 10-21-2007, 01:22 PM   #4
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I don't have an answer, but, I feel the same way you do about "breakfast" foods. I can't stand most of them, so, I used to just skip breakfast...I know, a big no no. So, what I started doing once I began trying to shed some weight, was, eating lunch/dinner foods for breakfast -- and yes, most people think it's a bit odd. But, whatever works, right?
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Old 10-21-2007, 01:32 PM   #5
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I think anything is game for breakfast! I had a turkey sandwich for breakfast this morning!

It's kind of funny how it's changed over the centuries and I think Colleen has hit the nail on the head. I like that the Vietnamese had beef rice noodle bowls at breakfast! It's very good, esp. with the fresh herbs and bean sprouts!

I'll have whatever as well. I do like a hot beverage in the morning, though--it's comforting for me.

But, I do think we should rev up our metabolism's after we "break the fast" from sleep in any way, shape or form that suits us. (And for me, is mostly healthy )

Good topic!
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Old 10-21-2007, 01:35 PM   #6
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I had a turkey sandwich for breakfast today....I am such a freakin' REBEL!
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Old 10-21-2007, 03:34 PM   #7
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I don't like heavy brekkies and I know what you mean by traditional morning meals. But you see, its not always the eggs, sausage and muffin combo that peope opt for; that just happens to be popular through tradition and taste. A lot of people I know, get up in the morning have a little tea and fruit or granola with yogurt, sometimes fiber cereal or oatmeal. You mentioned a lot of high-calorie, fat and carb breakfast foods, but there are a lot of healthy breakfast foods that get overlooked.

In fact, my preference would be a latte, full fat milk no sugar and a slice of whole grain toast. But you see, I hate lunch foods too. I could barely stand breakfast. The only time I actually like the poached egg + 1 lean sausage link is for BRUNCH on weekends.. The meal I like the most is dinner.
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Old 10-21-2007, 04:02 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by veggielover View Post
I don't like heavy brekkies .

Vegetables are light. I like to eat vegetables for breakfast.
Fruit is too sweet for me. Except for really sour apples. Most yogurt, unless it is plain yogurt, is too sweet for me.

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Old 10-21-2007, 04:33 PM   #9
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spinymouse, I love veggies but for breakfast, they're strange...

But I can't even do it. If I had veggies all the time I'd waste myself away!
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Old 10-21-2007, 05:06 PM   #10
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I like something pretty quick in the morning, something cool (rather than hot) and I want something simple so I make spinach smoothies for breakfast. Before spinach smoothies, I made some other type of smoothie. I can't quite remember what I ate for breakfast before I ate smoothies because I've eaten them so many years.
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Old 10-21-2007, 09:38 PM   #11
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I have never lived on a farm....maybe it 'cause the chickens only work mornings.
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Old 10-22-2007, 12:24 PM   #12
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I've often suspected that what we think of as "breakfast foods" are chosen because they're (or in the past were) simple and quick to prepare when one has only a limited amount of time between getting up and heading out for work or school, as compared to lunch or dinner foods: how long does it take to fry eggs and bacon, or dump cereal into a bowl and pour milk over it ? Still that doesn't explain why we couldn't make sandwiches for breakfast (I remember last time I went to Europe, on a bus tour, when we were in Holland and Germany the hotels we stayed at had deli buffets for breakfast and you could fix a ham-and-cheese or roast-beef or chicken or whatever sandwich. I try to remember that for breakfast, this morning I had brown sugar ham and Laughing Cow light Swiss on an English muffin. Hmmm though, that doesn't quite explain some of the offerings on the Wikipedia page listed above, but maybe there's an assumption that you have servants getting up 2 h before you do and fix breakfast

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Old 10-22-2007, 12:28 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by veggielover View Post
spinymouse, I love veggies but for breakfast, they're strange...

But I can't even do it. If I had veggies all the time I'd waste myself away!
I don't have that issue at all!

Spinymouse, you know I feel the same way you do. I prefer congees and stir fries (sans oil) and wraps and bean burritos!
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Old 10-22-2007, 12:40 PM   #14
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Nice to know I have company in my rebellion. But I still don't know why the tradition ever happened about breakfast foods. I guess the reason just falls into the "But we've always done it this way" kind of reasoning. ANOther, I don't have any servants but I've been known to get up at 5am to make vegetable lasagna. Really.
Gary, yeah, those chickens do seem to get up pretty early. As evidenced by audible roosters anyway!

Also I don't understand what green bean and mushroom soup casserole has to do with Thanksgiving, or why people don't drink eggnog in the middle of July, or what cookies have to do with Christmas. It's all so bewildering.
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Old 10-22-2007, 12:45 PM   #15
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green bean and mushroom soup casserole? I've never heard of that.

And cookies are good anytime of the year, my waist knows that

I don't understand why people drink eggnog at all

I don't know about breakfast foods but it also varies from country to country. When I was in greece, yogurt and honey was breakfast. When I was in China, it was hot noodle soup.

Last time I had pancakes, I had them for dinner and without syrup. I've actually received comments because of my lack of syrup on pancakes but I think they taste better that way.

You can certainly eat anything you want for breakfast or any meal but I couldn't imagine eating lasagna for breakfast... Well maybe cold lasagna... but hot? no
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