No matter how many times we’ve heard that breakfast is the most important meal of the day, many of us still don’t give breakfast much thought. Whether we choose fast over healthy while on the run or skip breakfast all together, many of our breakfasts are not living up to their potential.
Is breakfast really that important?
Recent research says yes. People who eat a healthy breakfast tend to get more of the important nutrients we need. Traditional breakfast foods tend to be good sources of key nutrients like fiber, calcium, vitamin D and others that we may not otherwise be getting enough of. Healthy breakfast eaters may also be better at managing their weight.
What’s for breakfast?
While simply eating breakfast is a good thing, what we eat is important, too. Try these suggestions for a healthy breakfast:
- Whole grain cereal with low fat milk and fresh fruit.
- Low fat yogurt with granola and dried fruit.
- Whole wheat pancakes or muffin with fresh berries and a glass of skim milk.
- Peanut butter and banana on a whole grain bagel.
- Vegetable egg white frittata with whole wheat toast.
- Not usually hungry in the morning? Start off small to get in the breakfast habit.
- Venture off the breakfast menu. If you like salads, try them at breakfast. It might seem funny at first, but the key is to get the energy you need to start your day off right. Which food you choose for that energy is up to you.
Make it a family affair.
Children with parents who eat breakfast are more likely to eat breakfast themselves. Make breakfast a daily habit for your family. Everyone will reap the benefits and you may help to instill a lifelong healthy habit in your children.
1. O'Neil, Carol E. et al. Nutrient Intake, Diet Quality, and Weight/Adiposity Parameters in Breakfast Patterns Compared with No Breakfast in Adults: National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey 2001-2008 J Acad Nutr Diet. 2014; 114: S27-S43.
2. Pearson N, Biddle SJ, Gorely T. Family correlates of breakfast consumption among children and adolescents. A systematic review. Appetite. 2009 Feb;52(1):1-7. Epub 2008 Aug 22. Review.