by Morgan Robbins, RD, LD at LMC
Breakfast has been under ridicule lately that it may not be the most important meal of the day. Let’s get back to the basics: think of your body as being in a fasting state while you’re sleeping until the moment that you wake up (breaking the fast = breakfast, clever right?).
Eating an early meal soon after waking up will jump-start your metabolism and get your body ready for the day. Remember, FOOD is fuel; it’s what helps you get through the day. You get out what you put in, if you don’t put fuel in the tank or put poor quality fuel in, you’re not going to go very far (example: you skip breakfast or eat foods lacking in quality nutrition more than likely you’re going to be starving by lunch time and make poor choices). This will help put the meals and foods you choose into a new perspective.
What to eat always seems to be the question. Too many people are choosing high fat, high cholesterol, high sodium breakfasts that are lacking the nutrition needed to give your body the energy it requires. I’m talking bacon, sausage, biscuits with gravy, chicken nuggets and hash. These are all foods to be consumed in moderation and preferably not as the meal you chose to give your body the fuel it needs to start your day.
Let’s compare a healthy breakfast with a not-so-healthy breakfast:
Whole wheat toast w/ 1 Tbsp peanut butter
½ cup blueberries
27 gm protein
8 gm fiber
22% calories from fat
3 mg cholesterol
287 mg sodium
14 gm protein
2 gm fiber
54% calories from fat
33 mg cholesterol
1,373 mg sodium
In addition to being the better choice, you’re getting whole grains, healthy fats and more vitamins and minerals with the healthy breakfast compared to the not so healthy breakfast. You’re also getting more food with the healthy breakfast – so enjoy!
When doing so in moderation, you can make all foods fit into a healthy diet. Moderation is the key. When planning or ordering your breakfast tomorrow, keep in mind this is the fuel your body will use to start your day off right!