5 Simple Add-ons to Make Breakfast Better

By Dr. Carmin Iadonisi

Often one of the challenges of maintaining a healthy weight management program is finding good choices for breakfast. Some of my favorite alternatives to sweetened sugar cereals include whole grains such as quinoa, amaranth or good old-fashioned oatmeal.

Recently, Quaker gave oatmeal a makeover, so it could be classified as a weight-control food. Unfortunately, the new Weight Control Oatmeal ends up having artificial flavorings, chemicals and artificial sweeteners.

As an alternative, here are 5 simple ways to make oatmeal a little healthier. You can add one or all of these suggestions into your oatmeal to get the weight management benefits of “Weight Control Oatmeal” without all of the added artificial chemicals.


1. Add a Tablespoon of Flaxseeds
Flaxseeds provides multiple health benefits, but I mainly add it to oatmeal to provide a good source of fiber.



2. Add a Serving of Raw Walnuts
Walnuts are one of the most nutrient dense nuts and are loaded with Omega-3 Oils and antioxidants. The healthy fats also help to improve satiation.



3. Try a ½ Cup Frozen Fruit
My favorite choices are raspberries, mixed berries, blueberries or lately I have been adding frozen mango. Frozen fruits help naturally sweeten the oatmeal along with adding a bounty of natural antioxidants. (I recommend adding the frozen fruit as you are cooking the oatmeal, so it will naturally sweeten the oatmeal as it thaws.)



4. Add a Protein Powder
If you exercise in the morning before breakfast, then adding some protein powder to oatmeal will help give your body the raw ingredients it needs to rebuild muscle after a strenuous workout. My favorite choices are a good Egg Protein or Organic Rice Protein Powder.



5. Add a Splash of Almond Milk
Sometimes the oatmeal can get a little dry when you add so many different ingredients, so adding a little almond milk just makes the oatmeal more palatable. Almond milk is higher in calcium than most milk alternatives and actually tastes pretty good.


Hopefully, this list will inspire you and get you to come up with even more suggestions to add to your whole grain breakfast.


  1. Katherine

    In trying to be a healthy person and healthy mom-role-model, I’ve switched to oatmeal most mornings. My daughters and I have taken up the challenge of making this a delicious choice for them. The packets are what they are used to – and after we looked at the ingredients on them – too full of sugars and things we don’t know about. SO…old fashioned oatmeal poured into a bowl, the electric kettle on for 60 seconds to boil the water. Raisins, walnuts and cinnamon, or fresh peaches or bananas, frozen fruits, cinnamon apples (apples cut up with cinnamon added and microwaved for one minute – we just usually have them in the fridge for dessert or to have with yogurt) or peanut butter and a dusting of dark chocolate…most of these with a 1/2 tbsp of fat-free vanilla creamer. We pour the water over the oats, let sit under a cloth for a minute while we finish getting lunches together, then add the toppings and YUM. We’ve been keeping track of our energy levels and emotions so the girls (and I) can really think about the choices of morning foods. Hands down, the family’s decided this is waay tastier than the packets and we feel better. It’s what we have most of the time but of course, “everything in moderation, including moderation”. I thank you all for posting to blogs like this as it keeps me inspired and helps me raise food-thoughtful children without anyone becoming obsessed about healthy or unhealthy choices. 🙂