What’s for Breakfast?

Breakfast, as I like to point out during my nutrition Lunch ‘n Learn seminars, really is the most important meal of the day.  It’s best to eat something within 2 hours of waking up to stabilize your blood sugar and replenish your body’s fuel stores because, believe it or not, you burn calories while sleeping!  Studies have shown that kids and adults who eat breakfast have more energy, are able to focus better, and actually consume fewer calories throughout the day.  So, skipping breakfast is not going to help you lose weight – it might do just the opposite!  Some people would rather not eat a “traditional” breakfast, instead choosing a sandwich or leftovers like cold pizza, and I don’t see many problems with this, as long as you’re eating something within 2 hours of waking up.  But in a perfect world, your breakfast would be around 300-400 calories and composed of the following:

  • whole grains
  • lean protein
  • fruit
  • a small amount of “healthy” unsaturated fat

So what are some examples of each of these breakfast components?  Feel free to mix and match from the ideas below, or share ideas of your own in the comments section:

Whole Grains:  whole wheat english muffin; whole wheat thin or mini bagel; one serving of high-fiber whole grain cereal (good choices are shredded wheat, Cheerios, bran flakes); one serving of oatmeal; whole wheat toaster waffle

Lean Protein:  one egg (any way you like it!); 6 ounces of lowfat, unsweetened yogurt (greek or regular); one 8-ounce glass of lowfat milk or soymilk; 3 ounces of turkey sausage or bacon

Fruit:  one banana; one cup strawberries, blueberries, or raspberries; 4 ounces of 100% fruit juice; one medium apple; 1/4 cup of dried fruit

Healthy Fat:  1 tablespoon of all natural peanut butter; a handful of nuts (walnuts, pecans, almonds, etc.); 1 tablespoon of flaxmeal

*Special thanks to Wellness Champion Lydia Mixco of DDS for the idea for this post!

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