The alarm goes off and your day begins. BUT before you head out the door, stop and reach for the most important meal of the day.
Breakfast is significant to everyone’s overall health and performance.
After eight to 12 hours without a meal or snack, it’s time to break the fast by replenishing your body’s glucose, also called blood sugar, the main energy source for the brain.
According to the American Dietetic Association, studies show breakfast eaters tend to have more strength and endurance, improved concentration, problem-solving abilities and test scores.
Increased vitamin and mineral intake, weight control and even lower cholesterol levels also top the benefits of breakfast.
On the flip side, those who skip breakfast often feel tired, irritable or restless in the morning.
Skipping breakfast has been shown to lead to overeating at snack time or the next meal.
Lead by example, kids who see their parents eat breakfast are more likely to eat breakfast, too.
Save time in the morning with these quick breakfast options, such as:
Whole grain cereal with fruit and low-fat milk
Whole grain cereal with a cup of yogurt
Toasted waffles topped with peanut butter
Instant oatmeal with milk and dried fruit
Fruit and cottage cheese
A whole-wheat pita stuffed with sliced hard-cooked eggs
Lean ham and low-fat cheese on a toasted whole grain English muffin
Breakfast smoothie with low-fat milk, frozen strawberries and a banana
If there is no time to eat at home, plan a quick on-the-go option. Ideas can include trail mix, piece of fruit and carton of milk, low-fat string cheese and whole wheat crackers, or whole grain cereal bars. Don’t forget to check out the breakfast options available at work or school.
If your taste buds don't crave breakfast foods, enjoy a lean meat sandwich or leftovers like veggie or cheese pizza, pasta, rice, or a low-fat cheese and veggie quesadilla in the morning. Just make sure to start your day the healthy way: with breakfast.