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Consuming a well balanced breakfast each morning can help boost energy, mental focus and reduce hunger and intake later in the day. What you eat for breakfast has an important impact on how you feel and perform all day long. If your idea of breakfast for yourself or your family has been coffee and a doughnut or sugar cereal and a glass of fruit juice, you’re setting the stage for a stressful, unproductive day. Breakfast can be flavorful, healthy and easy!
Follow these tips to create a healthy breakfast to keep you and your family fueled all morning long.
Time It Right
Eat your first meal within about one hour of waking. According to the UK Bath Breakfast Project, people who start their day with breakfast have improved insulin sensitivity by 10 percent and more glucose control throughout the day.
Front Load Your Calories
Aim to consume about ¼ of your total daily calories at breakfast (approximately 400 calories for an average women and 500 for an average man). Breakfast increases levels of the satiety hormone PYY, helping you to feel full and will help alleviate overating throughout the remainder of the day.
Eating protein first thing in the morning is important. Having 20 to 30 grams may help prevent weight gain and promote weight loss by stabilizing your blood sugar, decreasing your appetite, and making you feel full. Morning protein also helps limit evening snacking. A study in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition found that people who ate a protein-rich breakfast consumed 200 fewer calories at night. To create a protein rich breakfast, start with Greek yogurt, eggs or adding protein powder to a smoothie.
Boost Your Fiber
If you eat cereal like 31% of Americans, choose options with at least 5 grams of fiber and less than 5 grams of sugar. Also try adding some fresh fruit to create variety and add nutrients and fiber. For added protein, grab a hard boiled egg or instead of milk, top your cereal with one cup of Greek yogurt and ground flaxseeds.
Don’t Be Afraid of Eggs
True, eggs are high in dietary cholesterol, but their effect on blood cholesterol levels is minimal. Most people can eat several eggs per week without worry. Those who eat a protein rich breakfast, like eggs, lose more weight compared to those who eat a carbohydrate-only breakfast like a bagel or cereal. Eggs have been found to reduce levels of the hunger stimulating hormone ghrelin and increase satiety. Egg yolks are also one of the few natural sources of vitamin D.