10 in 10 Healthy Challenge: Healthy Breakfast Ideas
Breakfast really is the most important meal of the day. I never skip breakfast-I love breakfast foods and I need the energy to start my day off right.
When you wake up in the morning, you haven’t eaten for approximately 6 to 12 hours: it’s time to “break the fast.” Research has shown that breakfast helps to improve mental and physical performance and contributes many important nutrients to your diet.
When you skip breakfast, your metabolic rate slows down and your blood sugar drops. As a result, you become hungry and have less energy. This sets you up to impulsively snack or to eat extra servings or bigger portions at lunch or dinner. When you eat breakfast, your body feels nourished and satisfied, making you less likely to overeat the rest of the day.
Common excuses for not eating breakfast are: no time, nothing to eat, I am not hungry in the morning, I don’t like breakfast foods, etc. If you struggle with eating breakfast here are a few ideas to help you make breakfast part of your daily routine.
Get up 15 minutes earlier. You can fix and consume a healthy breakfast in 15 minutes or less.
Plan ahead. Decide what you are going to eat the night before. Prep whatever can be prepped the night before. I make my own oatmeal packets-I put 1/2 cup of rolled oats in a sandwich bag with cinnamon and a few raisins. I bring milk and make my oats in the break room at work.
If you are always on the go pick up portable breakfast items at the store: fruit, yogurt, string cheese, granola/protein bars, vegetable juice, nuts, etc.
Here are quick, tasty and nutritious choices to get your day off to a good start:
- Whole grain cold cereal with skim/soy/almond milk with fresh fruit-read labels-not all cereals are healthy. Look for whole grain, at least 5 grams of fiber, low sugar, and pay attention to serving sizes.
- Oatmeal topped with raisins, cinnamon, and almonds
- Baked Oatmeal-one of my favorite breakfast treats!
- Yogurt parfait with granola and fruit-we make our own granola and yogurt-cheap, healthy, and tasty!
- Natural peanut or almond butter spread on whole-wheat toast with banana or apple slices
- Fruit smoothie made with yogurt or skim/soy milk-make it the night before and put in the freezer. Take it out in the morning while you get ready. It will be thawed and ready to drink when you are!
- Breakfast burrito (whole wheat tortilla, scrambled eggs/eggbeaters, veggies, low fat cheese, beans, salsa)
- Whole wheat waffle or pancakes-top with fruit. Make a large batch and freeze the extras. Just pop them in the toaster to heat them up. We love blueberry buckwheat pancakes. Mmm!
- Vegetable omelet, fritatta, or egg casserole
- Whole wheat English muffin or a Sandwich Thin topped with low fat cheese and an egg-skip the drive thru and make it at home!
- Tofu scramble-if you haven’t tried scrambled tofu, give it a chance. We love it!
- Whole Wheat Berry Oatmeal Muffins-make a big batch and put some in the freezer.
- Anything is better than nothing, if you don’t like breakfast foods-try leftovers, a turkey sandwich on whole grain bread, a bowl of soup-whatever you will eat!
What do you eat for breakfast? Please share! I hope these tips were helpful.