Breakfast is often described as the most important meal of the day, providing sustenance and energy (i.e., calories) for whatever activities lie ahead. As nutritionist Adelle Davis famously put it back in the 1960s: “Eat breakfast like a king, lunch like a prince and dinner like a pauper.” During a busy morning, it’s easy to let breakfast fall low in your list of priorities, but taking just a few minutes to have something to eat can really make a difference to your day. If you don’t have time to eat before leaving the house, we have lots of breakfast ideas that can be eaten on-the-go or when you get to work.
- Breakfast should be eaten within an hour of waking
- A healthy breakfast should provide calories in the range of 20-35% of your guideline daily allowance (GDA).
Apart from providing us with energy, breakfast foods are good sources of important nutrients such as calcium, iron and B vitamins as well as protein and fiber. The body needs these essential nutrients and research shows that if these are missed at breakfast, they are less likely to be compensated for later in the day. Fruit and vegetables are good sources of vitamins and minerals so try to include a portion of them in your breakfast.
Breakfast can be good for waistline too, research shows those who eat breakfast are less likely to be overweight and more likely to be within their ideal weight range compared with breakfast skippers. If you skip breakfast, you’re more likely to reach for high sugar and fatty snacks mid-morning.
- Cognitive function
Breakfast also restores glucose levels, an essential carbohydrate that is needed for the brain to function. Many studies have shown how eating breakfast can improve memory and concentration levels and it can also make us happier as it can improve mood and lower stress levels. In studies among children, breakfast can improve attainment, behavior and has been linked to improved grades.
- Energy needs
People’s energy needs vary depending on activity levels and life stage but typically, men require more energy than women. Growing children require a lot of energy, so breakfast is a must.
- A morning meal helps you keep your blood sugar level stable during the day
- Healthy and nutritious breakfast reduces the risk of starving as well as cravings and overeating later in the day.
- People who skip breakfast have lower energy levels and tend to get tired quickly.
- Researches have shown that people who skip their breakfast have poor memory.
- Protein, Fiber and Whole Grains make for a breakfast that will keep you energized and sharp throughout the day.
- Protein in the morning will jump-start your metabolism and make you feel fuller longer helping to avoid those mid morning temptations and cravings.
- Fiber from fruits, vegetables and whole grains is important for digestion. Men should consume 38 grams per day and women should get 25 grams, including soluble and insoluble fiber. Three grams of soluble fiber in the diet can have cholesterol-lowering effects.
Clearly, breakfast really is the most important meal of the day!