Be sure to check the Nutritious Value of the Breakfast that you are taking, because many of the Breakfast Cereals which flood our tables and decorate our bill-boards, Some of them are made of the waste of flouring mills, known as “Middlings”, “Shorts” or Bran, which were formerly used for Cow-feed. The claims of many of them are greatly exaggerated, for they contain no more Nourishment, or in no more digestible form, than the same weight of bread; and they cost from two to five times as much. As they come on our tables, they are nearly seven-eighths water; and the cream and sugar taken with them are of higher Nutritive Value than they are. They should never be relied upon as the main part of a meal. Below are among the Most Nutritious Breakfast Foods.
Corn meal is one of the richest meals in Nutritive Value for its price, as it has an abundance of Starch and a small amount of fat. It is, however, poor in Nitrogen. Corn Meal is chiefly valuable for furnishing cakes, fritters, and Mushes to give variety to the diet, and help to regulate the bowels.
Oatmeal comes the nearest to wheat in the amount of Nitrogen or Protein, but the digestible part of this is much smaller than in wheat, and the indigestible portion is decidedly irritating to the bowels, so that if used in excess of about one-fifth of our total Starch-food required, it is likely to upset the digestion.
Rye also contains a considerable amount of Gluten, but is much poorer in Starch than Wheat is; and the bread made out of its flour—the so-called “Black Bread” – is dark, sticky, and inclined to sour readily. Most of the “Rye” bread sold in the shops, or served on our tables, is made of wheat flour with a moderate mixture of Rye to give the sour taste.
Rice consists chiefly of Starch, and makes nutritious puddings or cakes, and may be used as a vegetable, in the place of potatoes, with meat and fish. It is, however, lacking in flavor, and when properly cooked, contains so much water that it has to be eaten in very large amounts to furnish Much Nutrition.
The only important Starchy Food outside of the grains is Potatoes. These contain considerable amounts of Starch, but mixed with a good deal of Cellulose, or Vegetable Fiber, and Water, so that, like Rice, large amounts of them must be eaten in order to furnish a good fuel supply. They, however, make a very necessary article of diet in connection with meats, fish, and other vegetables.
As a rough illustration of the Nutritional value of the different Starch Foods, it may be said that in order to get the amount of nourishment contained in an ordinary 0.5Kg Loaf of Wheat or White Bread, it would be necessary to eat about 3Kg of Cooked Rice, as it comes on the table; about 5.5Kg of Boiled Potatoes; or a Bowl of Oatmeal Porridge about the size of a wash-basin.