Eating a healthy breakfast can set you up for the day. It can make you feel energised, improve your mood and support you to eat less throughout the day and maintain a healthy weight.
People who skip breakfast are likely to have more problems with concentration, metabolism, and weight than those who don’t and eating the right food at breakfast can improve your performance, body function and mood through the day.
Why Shouldn’t I Skip Breakfast?
Many of us skip breakfast as a way to lose weight or because we simply don’t feel like eating. Breakfast consumption has been identified as an important factor in nutrition with some studies suggesting that skipping breakfast can damage our nutritional uptake for the day.
Weight Loss: Skipping breakfast has also been linked to being overweight and failing to lose weight. One study published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition on eating a healthy breakfast reported that eating breakfast helped reduce dietary fat and minimize impulsive snacking resulting is greater weight loss and therefore may be an important part of any weight-reduction program.
Memory & Concentration: High energy intake from breakfast has been shown to have a beneficial effect on short-term memory and concentration.
Mood: Research has also linked breakfast to an immediate increase in mood that lasts throughout the morning. A recent study in the International Journal of Food Science reported that Individuals who consumed a cereal breakfast each day were less depressed, less emotionally distressed and had lower levels of perceived stress than those who did not eat breakfast each day.
What Should I Eat For Breakfast?
What you should eat for breakfast very much depends on your daily routine and what you want to gain from your breakfast. Low fat breakfasts have been shown to have the most beneficial effects on mood and of course low fat options will help you lose or maintain your weight.
High fibre breakfast cereals are low in calories so will support weight loss and maintenance and have also been shown to keep you feeling full for longer. Just be sure to check the sugar content, many cereals that seem to be healthy are actuallt filled with Sugar. Stick to plain items like shredded wheat or cornflakes.
Eggs are high in protein so will give you a boost of energy if you are planning to exercise or if you have a busy morning ahead of you.
If you exercise first thing, eat beforehand to raise blood glucose levels that have dropped overnight. A 200- to 250-calorie snack with 30 to 50 grams of carbohydrates will let you work out harder and burn more calories.
In short if you are not going to exercise in the morning stick to high fibre cereals, low fat smoothies and add a little fruit to your diet. This will keep you healthy, improve your mood and provide all the calories you need without giving you excess.
If you are going to exercise first thing add a few more calories and energy based foods to your breakfast to give you that energy boost. Eggs, carbohydrate based foods and a side of fruit will give you the added calories and energy you need. Remember to keep it a low fat healthy breakfast as this will boost your motivation and mood!