Start the Day with a Healthy Breakfast

Renew You Challenge

Let’s start this week off right! 

Here is your newest weekly challenge (I mean opportunity!) to help set you off on the right foot and in the right direction for bringing health to your week. You could even add it to your calendar. Join us! 

The first meal of the day is considered the most important because it gets us going in the morning. Although you may think that your morning coffee is what fuels you, it’s actually the food you eat that keeps your metabolism running smooth (when you eat the right foods, that is). Despite the fact that breakfast is the most important meal, about 30 percent of Americans skip breakfast one to three times per week.

During a recent presentation at the Institute of Food Technologists Annual Meeting & Food Expo, Nancy Auestad, PhD, presented some statistics: Breakfast eaters get about 17 percent of their daily calories from breakfast, as well as a high amount of certain nutrients, like vitamin D (58 percent), vitamin B12 (42 percent), and vitamin A (41 percent). That’s not to say that any breakfast will do, however.

What’s the best breakfast? One high in protein and fiber, and low in refined and processed carbohydrates. In one study presented at the IFT Meeting, those participants who ate a low-glycemic breakfast containing whole almonds stayed full longer and had lower blood sugar levels after breakfast and lunch when compared to those who did not eat a low-glycemic breakfast. Maintaining healthy blood sugar levels is crucial for overall health and to reduce sugar cravings and mid-morning crashes.

While many people reach for doughnuts, pastries, hash browns, or toast for breakfast, these foods set the body up for a morning slump. Instead, a breakfast that contains protein (like eggs!) and vegetables (do I hear a veggie omelet in the making?) is optimal for sustained nutrition and energy. Take notice of your breakfast habits this week, and make the right changes to your first meal—add protein and fiber (in the form of vegetables and low-sugar fruits like berries) to support your wellness all day.

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