If I had one tip, and only one tip, to share what would it be?
I have a tip that will help you find the right amount of body fat to keep, increase your energy, and become more productive at school or work.
Eating a nutritionally complete breakfast is the one thing we all should do every single day.
Yep, your grandmother was right (unless Grandma’s idea of breakfast was two cigarettes and a cup of coffee); studies now prove that breakfast really is the most important meal of the day. Not only does it give you energy to start a new day, but breakfast is linked to many health benefits, including weight control and improved performance.
Eating breakfast is important for everyone, but is especially so for children and adolescents. According to the American Dietetic Association, children who eat breakfast perform better in the classroom and on the playground, with better concentration, problem-solving skills, and eye-hand coordination.
Recently we were watching the national news and Sandy and I watched this high school athlete who as he prepared for school, getting up before 6:00am, dash off to school because school started at just past 7:00am, eat virtually nothing and then he was scheduled for a school hot lunch at just after 10:00 am, (a lunch he did not like and or eat, some really bad looking pizza) we looked at each other and thought, just like our daughter, how many other people go through this same ritual. This has got to change.
Studies show that eating a healthy breakfast (as opposed to the kind containing doughnuts) can help give you:
- A more nutritionally complete diet, higher in nutrients, vitamins and minerals
- Improved concentration and performance in the classroom or the boardroom
- More strength and endurance to engage in physical activity
- Lower cholesterol levels
We need to focus on getting good calories, not empty sugar laden calories, into our morning ritual. Notice how I started that sentence with “WE”? In our quest to speed things up, we are eliminating and or substituting a critical meal for our start of our day. What if I told you that changing this routine would maximize your quality of life, and improve your mental fatigue? Would you consider a few thoughts?
Breakfast Benefit: Weight Control
Many studies, in both adults and children, have shown that breakfast eaters tend to weigh less than breakfast skippers.
Why? One theory suggests that eating a healthy breakfast can reduce hunger throughout the day, and help people make better food choices at other meals. While it might seem you could save calories by skipping breakfast, this is not an effective strategy. Typically, hunger gets the best of breakfast-skippers, and they eat more at lunch and throughout the day. It’s worth noting that most studies linking breakfast to weight control loss looked at a healthy breakfast containing protein and/or whole grains — not meals loaded with fat and calories.
Include quality protein in your morning ritual
In my routine, which I have been following since my first body-building competition in 2010, I have the same plan every day, hemp protein powder in our homemade juice/tomato juice combo and my healthy fats, Carlson’s fish oil and coconut oil, one tablespoon each.
However, there is additional more traditional ways to accomplish the same goal and a breakfast of eggs may be one of the best ways to get your morning protein. While eggs are not always associated with weight loss, they contain some of the highest-quality protein. Adding a little lean protein to your breakfast may be just the boost you need to help keep you feeling full until lunchtime.
“Protein blunts your hunger the most, and is the most satiating,” according to Purdue University researcher Wayne Campbell, PhD.
High value breakfast cereals can be a fast and easy way to augment the sugary, empty calorie trap. Many studies have also shown that when breakfast cereal is ingested as part of an overall healthful lifestyle, it can play a role in maintaining a healthy body weight.
A Harvard study of more than 17,000 men found that those who frequently ate high quality breakfast cereal — both refined grain and whole-grain types — regularly weighed less than those who rarely or never ate breakfast cereal. Even if you think you don’t have time to eat breakfast, there are grab-and-go options that fill the bill.
Some quick and healthy choices include:
- A veggie omelet and a piece of whole-wheat toast
- A whole-wheat English muffin with low-fat cheese, a scrambled egg, and slice of tomato or lean ham
- Smoothie made with fruit and low-fat yogurt
- Salmon on 1/2 whole-grain bagel with light cream cheese
- Whole-grain cereal with fresh fruit and low-fat milk
- Oatmeal made with skim milk, raisins and nuts, with 4 ounces of orange juice
- Low-fat yogurt and a piece of fresh fruit
- Yogurt smoothie and breakfast bar
- Hard-boiled egg and a banana
Until next time, happy breakfast eating!