Going Back to the (Breakfast) Basics
Your mother was correct when she told you that “Breakfast is the most important meal of the day”. While many people think that skipping breakfast will save them calories, or don’t make the time to include this meal, studies have shown that skipping breakfast can actually have negative effects on your health. Here are 5 reasons to start the day with a smart meal:
Metabolism. Eating regular meals, especially breakfast, sends your body a message that it can USE rather can conserve the calories you are ingesting. Studies have shown that shifting your calorie intake to earlier in the day helps your body use calories more efficiently instead of storing excess calories as body fat.
Clear thinking. When you are hungry, it can make it difficult to concentrate and make smart choices.
More energy. Food is fuel! Eating a breakfast filled with complex carbohydrates and protein is like putting premium gas in your car. Feed your body the best to feel your best.
Controls hunger. While you might take in slightly fewer calories over the day if you skip breakfast, most people end up having trouble feeling satiated when they skip breakfast and choose unhealthier food choices later in the day.
Promotes heart health. Because of reasons #1-4, people who eat breakfast consistently tend to weigh less and therefore have less heart disease than people who skip breakfast.
In general, combining complex carbohydrates + protein is a good way to start your day. Adding a serving of fruit helps ensure you get vitamins and minerals to keep you healthy. Here are some breakfast ideas to get you started:
Oatmeal + Slivered Almonds + 1/2 banana
Whole Wheat Toast + Natural Peanut Butter + sliced strawberries
Plain Greek Yogurt + Unsweetened Granola + Berries
Triscuit Crackers + Cheese + Apple
Whole Grain English Muffin + Scrambled Egg + Cheese + Cantaloupe
This quick and versatile breakfast can be prepared the night before to ensure you walk out the door on time.
Total Fat: 3.8g
Saturated Fat: 1.2g
Monounsaturated Fat: 1g
Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g
Trans Fat: 0g
Total Carbohydrate: 33g
Dietary Fiber: 4g
Vitamin A: 5%
Vitamin C: 1%
1/2 cup steel-cut or old-fashioned rolled oatmeal
1/2 cup milk (low fat, almond, soy, etc.)
Mix base ingredients together in a mason jar or any container you can put a lid on.
Add in flavor combinations of your liking. Just be sure to limit added sugar, which can turn this healthy breakfast into a dessert.
Store in the refrigerator overnight to allow the oats to soak up the liquid.
Here are some examples of flavor combinations for you to try:
PB&J: almond butter + chopped strawberries + ground flax seed
Carrot Cake: grated carrots + shredded coconut + pecans + maple syrup
Pumpkin Pie: pureed pumpkin + pumpkin pie spice + maple syrup + pecans
Apple Cinnamon: cinnamon + chopped apples + chia seeds + honey
Think your diet is sub-par and you may be missing needed nutrients? Our registered dietitian has over 20 years of experience helping patients make healthy food choices! We invite you to schedule an appointment with our nutritionist by calling us at 703.349.5100 or clicking here to request an appointment. To stay up-to-date on the latest news and tips from us, be sure to follow us on Facebook and Instagram, and sign up for our monthly newsletter for even more information sent straight to your inbox!