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Health Hack: Salad for Breakfast


Honestly, there are days when my eating habits are terrible. This has a negative impact on my body and my mind. I shared in this post that I’ve been a chronic yo-yo dieter for most of my life, until three years ago when I made a decision to stop.

The psychological benefits of quitting have been huge and I’ve finally learned to love my body. The last time somebody tried to body shame me I actually felt fiercely protective of my flesh. After years of feeling like a detached head, bobbing around separate to the body beneath, the two have come together in harmony.

I’m now naturally drawn to caring for myself in a more holistic way, which includes developing new habits, rather than following ‘one size fits all’ advice. I used to try to follow that advice – rigidly – which resulted in spectacular falls off the wagon.

Each week I can’t always control the food choices presented to me; kind clients who bake cakes, networking and other events with wine and cheese – and conferences, which are synonymous with soggy sandwiches. Whilst the choice about what to eat is still mine, the difference between making a healthy or unhealthy decision usually comes down to how I start my day.

I’ve been kicking my ‘out and about’ days off with a salad for breakfast. It makes a world of difference and ensures I get a healthy serve of vegetables before I even leave the house.

In order to make life count, we must put our health first and foremost. I’ve often neglected to do this in the past. I’ve made a commitment to take better care of myself, without focusing on attaining a particular shape or size.

Here’s my ‘salad for breakfast’ recipe, although you may want to create or source one of your own, depending on your taste. Salad for breakfast can take some getting used to, especially if you’re used to reaching for something sugar-laden.

What about you, do you have any health hacks that have made a big difference in your life?  I’d really love to know. 

Breakfast Salad (Makes 2 Servings unless you add animal protein, in which case it could make 3-4 servings)

I prepare everything the evening before whilst making dinner, using only organic products or produce.

Ingredients (Makes 2 servings)

  • 15 Ounces of sweet potato, peeled and chopped into bite-sized chunks
  • 1 Tablespoon coconut oil
  • 1 Tablespoon smoked paprika
  • 1 Large bag of kale
  • 2 Tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 2 Teaspoons raw apple cider vinegar
  • 1 Avocado
  • A couple of handfuls of broccoli or other vegetable you love
  • 4 Ounces of mixed pumpkin and sunflower seeds – toast for extra crunch


  • 2 Tablespoons tahini
  • 1 Teaspoon honey
  • Juice of ½ a lemon
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • A little water to thin everything, otherwise it can become a sticky paste


  • Pre-heat your oven to 360 degrees Fahrenheit
  • Add sweet potato, coconut oil and smoked paprika to a baking tray. Bake until soft on the inside – around 20 minutes. (Take the tray out of the oven after 2-3 minutes. The coconut oil should have melted, and you can easily coat everything. Place tray back in the oven.)
  • Once cooked, remove. Allow the sweet potato to cool before you pop it in the fridge.
  • Wash and then finely slice kale, removing tough stems. In a bowl, mix kale with olive oil and raw apple cider vinegar, then use your hands to massage it for a minute or so. This tenderizes the kale, which will shrink and look like it’s wet.
  • Store in the fridge overnight, or prepare two hours before eating it if you’re serving this another time.
  • Mix up dressing and prepare the remaining ingredients and anything such as smoked salmon, if you want some animal protein.

Sleep, get up, get ready, throw everything together, adjust the seasoning to suit your taste and eat!

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Esther Zimmer is an Australian writer, lifestyle coach and personal stylist based in London. She believes everyone has a calling, and it’s not necessarily just one thing. The home she shares with her husband, David, is filled with art and books, and her favorite pastime is packing a bag and heading somewhere new. Esther writes about life, relationships, body image and travel and can be found at

7 thoughts on “Health Hack: Salad for Breakfast”

  1. Good for you. I wish the focus was more on health since that’s really the most important thing! I’m a smoothie girl to get in my greens in the AM. But that salad looks like a must-try! xo

    • Thanks Jen! Here in the UK there’s actually a lot of focus on health, or at least in London. Apparently we’re the first adopters of any new health craze that starts in LA, too. Although I think taking a consistent, sensible approach is far better than following the latest craze. For some reason smoothies never fill me up the same way as sitting and eating a meal does, although it’s all psychological, apparently! Esther xx

  2. I’ve made a breakfast change as well. For the last month, I’ve put veggies and fruit–blackberries, strawberries, banana, apple, kale, almond milk, nonfat plain yogurt–in the blender and make a smoothie, and drink it with a slice of cranberry walnut bread and almond butter. My energy level is through the roof. Simply amazing! xoxox, Brenda

    • Brenda, that sounds delicious! I enjoy smoothies but don’t find them very filling, maybe adding a healthy bread such as yours would do the trick. Much easier than making my salad! 🙂 Essie xx

  3. Although it totally grosses out my sweetheart, I love eating salad for breakfast, too! And luncheon and dinner.
    How do I love thee, salad? Oh, let me count the ways!

    • Donna, I feel like eating salad for breakfast grosses a lot of people out! But I’m with you, I could eat one for breakfast, lunch and dinner too! Esther xx

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