Morning Hacks: The Best and Worst Ways for High Performers to Start Their Day

I just spent an action packed week in Austin, Texas at Paleo f(x) which has now become my favorite health and fitness event of all. There were hundreds upon hundreds of nutrition, wellness and fitness products and activities to peruse, many of which include the nutrients and habits that I have been doing for a decade and a half now.

So out of all those health hacks out there, allow me to share with you the ones I've tried and found to be the worst, the half-decent and the very BEST of choices (because contrast is important) that are especially influential in the morning in priming your body and brain so that you can accomplish your goals and state of health that you deeply desire!

I start my day with ample hydration and massive amounts of quality nutrition but so much of society is all about a breakfast of sugar and drugs followed by more sugar and drugs. Some recommendations we often hear (like starting your day with sweet fruit) seem reasonable but actually have side effects that could zap your energy, mood and performance for the rest of the day. Here's my simplified list from the down right terrible to the absolute best ways for most bodies to start your day for maximum health and long lasting physical and mental energy.

The WORST Ways to Start Your Day

Avoid or completely modify these common habits:

  • Waking up, skipping drinking water and immediately drinking black coffee (a recipe for dehydration, headaches and never feeling quite well)

  • Toast and other dense carbs for breakfast (unless you like fungal overgrowth, blood sugar rollercoasters and feeling stressed)

  • Grain-based cereal with conventional milk (more excess carbs and inflammatory ingredients that subtract from your potential)

The HALF-DECENT Ways to Start Your Day

Make these more of an exception than the norm:

  • Organic fruit based smoothie (for most people this may lead to a sugar crash a couple hours or so later)

  • Organic fruit juices (juice is still high in sugar, just as high as soda and only moderately nutrient dense - probably only healthful for athletes who will immediately burn it all off - green juices are better, though can contain a significant amount of sugar as well)

The Very BEST Ways to Start Your Day

Do most of these nearly every day forever:

  • Hydrate with plenty of pure (spring/clean well) water first thing (start doing this before bed the night before - it's okay if you have to pee at night, it's natural)

  • Get sun all over your skin
  • Make a Longevity Power water-based elixir
  • Wait a while (30 minutes or up to several hours if your blood sugar remains stable) before eating food (this is called intermittent fasting and has so many benefits)
  • After hydrating, but before eating food, take your current stack of supplements and adaptogenic herbs (most of which do best taken on an empty stomach, though there are many supplements out there that are best taken with food - and most food is best taken with adaptogenic herbs

  • Make a Bulletproof coffee (if your body does well with coffee and dairy)

  • Make a Bulletproof style caffeine-free dairy-free blended drink

  • Make a Longevity Power style shake (like this one)

  • A breakfast rich in healthful fat, fiber, protein and nutrition (rather than carbs) for long burning energy, satiation and blood sugar balance

  • Sunshine all over your eyes and body (get your circadian rhythm and vitamin D levels optimized)

  • Exercise of al kinds (weight training being my favorite!) to kick start your metabolism, anti-stress hormones, and circulation for a happy body and brain for the rest of the day

Keep adding in better habits and replacing the old that no longer serve you. Each habit builds your health and builds you up to your next new habit until you become one ever more confident and savvy healthy lifestylist. Listen to your body and nourish yourself fully. You have great things to do in this world, and you deserve to feel great all along the way!

To your greatest health!
-Christian Bates


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