Power Up Your Day with Breakfast
Health and Nutrition Eating a healthy breakfast can often seem like a weekend-only luxury, but with some advance planning, you can make it a weekday reality.
For many adults, mornings are synonymous with rushing yourself and your kids out of the door as quickly as possible to get to school and work on time.
Research suggests that breaking your overnight fast can make a difference in your overall health and well-being. By starting the day with a balanced meal, you’re less likely to feel “hangry” and overeat later in the day. Try these breakfast ideas when time isn’t on your side:
Fuel your morning with high-octane carbohydrates, such as whole-grain cereal, bar, or toast, or even leftover rice. Carbs energize your body and brain for a busy day.
Get dietary fiber and antioxidants from a piece of fruit or a mix of fruits such as an apple, a piece of papaya or melon or a mix of berries.
Power up with protein, such as a hard-boiled egg, a slice of lean meat or fat-free dairy such as low-fat cheese, yogurt and milk, to keep you feeling full and going strong until lunch.
Get organized the night before. Make overnight oats that will be ready when you are. Get out your blender and arrange your fruit so that you can whip up a smoothie using yogurt or milk. Set out your whole-grain cereal on the counter so all you’ll have to do in the morning is to add milk.
Pack your breakfast to go. If there's no time to eat at home, tuck a packet of instant oatmeal in a bag along with dried fruit and nuts to have breakfast once you arrive to the office. Or eat a cereal bar and a piece of fruit on the way.
If your morning starts with a workout, don’t skip breakfast. Your body needs fuel to function. Eating before exercise, as opposed to exercising on an empty stomach, has been shown to improve your performance. Eating in the morning also helps replenish liver glycogen and steadies blood sugar levels.
A low-intensity morning workout — such as a brisk walk, bike ride or yoga — requires very little fuel. Drink 16 ounces of water and have a small carbohydrate-rich snack such as a mini-bagel or a 100-calorie granola bar. After your workout, refuel your body with a smart breakfast of quality carbohydrates and protein.
For more healthful eating tips, visit www.eatright.org.