You have probably heard that breakfast is the most important meal of the day, do you know why? Here are just a few benefits of eating a healthy breakfast:
Jump-start your metabolism from the overnight fast: Breakfast is considered an important meal because it breaks the overnight fasting periods and replenishes your supply of glucose.
What is glucose, you ask? Glucose is your body’s energy source and is broken down and absorbed from the carbohydrates you eat. In the morning, after you have gone without food for as long as 12 hours, your glucose levels drop. Low glucose levels mean low energy!
Your body has been fasting overnight, and in the morning you are almost in the first stages of starvation. Skipping breakfast keeps your body in ‘starvation’ mode, while eating a good meal will give your metabolism a boost. If you’re trying to lose weight, the last thing you want to do is keep your metabolism at this lowered state
Breakfast provides a significant proportion of the day’s total nutrient intake and offers the opportunity to eat foods fortified with nutrients such as foliate, iron, vitamins and fiber. Essential vitamins, minerals and other nutrients can only be gained from food. Breakfast cereals, milk and whole grain breads are all fortified with these essential nutrients.
Eating breakfast improves your thinking ability and keeps you at top mental performance. It provides your brain with fuel to enhance problem solving and memory retention.
Eating a good breakfast will keep you from getting too hungry, which will help prevent you from over eating later in the day. Studies show that breakfast eaters are able to better resist fatty and high caloric foods throughout the day. If you skip breakfast, you will tend to nibble on snacks during the mid-morning and may turn to coffee for an energy boost.
Good Breakfast Choices:
Most adults should consume about a 400 to 450 calorie breakfast. That is the equivalent of 1 fruit, 2 grains, 1 protein and 1 low fat dairy.
Here is an example of a balanced breakfast: 1 Egg with 2 pieces of whole grain toast, 2 teaspoons of tub margarine, or butter and a yogurt with 1/2 cup of berries. Or, 1 cup of oatmeal, 1 cup of low fat milk, a handful or nuts sprinkled on the oatmeal and a glass of 100% juice.
School age kids need almost as much as adults and should be consuming at least 300 to 400 calories. A great breakfast for kids is an egg with a slice of whole grain toast sprinkled with cinnamon, a small piece of fruit and a cup of low fat milk. Or, a bowl of cereal with sliced banana, 1 cup of low fat milk and ½ cup of trail mix or a small granola bar.