Breakfast is often touted to be the “most important meal of the day”—and for good reason! Eating a healthy breakfast can have many positive health effects and can help you feel energized throughout your day. Below we go over some tips and tricks to help you start your day off right.
Why Breakfast is Important
Breakfast ends the overnight fasting period, replenishing the supply of glucose that your body uses for energy. Studies have shown that eating breakfast can help raise energy levels and can boost your ability to concentrate on tasks. Some research has also indicated that skipping breakfast may increase your risk of cardiovascular disease and type 2 diabetes.
Despite this, many people still skip breakfast, usually due to not having enough time in the morning. Good news is preparing in advance can help make it easier to fit a healthy breakfast into your daily routine.
Sugary breakfast cereals, and breakfast foods like bacon that are high in saturated fat, can have a detrimental effect on your overall health. Instead of these foods, try choosing breakfast foods that are:
- High in fibre: Whole-grain breads, oats, and granola are all high in fibre. This can make you feel full longer while also stabilizing blood sugar levels. Adding flax or chia seed to smoothies can help these foods to digest more slowly.
- Without added sugars: Instead of sugary cereals, try adding fruit to your breakfast routine. Whether it’s raw, frozen, or blended into a smoothie, fruit is full of essential vitamins and nutrients that your body needs to feel energized in the morning.
- High in protein: Foods like eggs, cottage cheese, nuts and nut butters are full of protein and can help you feel full for longer.
Benefits of Eating Breakfast
Studies have shown that eating a healthy breakfast can have many amazing health benefits, including:
- Kickstarting your metabolism
- Improving memory and concentration throughout the day
- Lowering risks of cardiovascular disease and type 2 diabetes
- Lowering levels of LDL or “bad” cholesterol
Why is Breakfast the Most Important Meal of the Day?
If you often find yourself skipping breakfast, try preparing your breakfast the night before. Many people find that preparing in advance makes it easier to incorporate a healthy breakfast into their daily routines.
Below we have included a recipe for overnight oats. These can be prepped in advance and be ready to go for your busy morning!
Cinnamon Overnight Oats:
- ½ cup rolled oats
- ¾ cup of liquid (water, milk, almond milk, kefir or yogurt)
- ½ teaspoon honey
- ¼ teaspoon ground cinnamon
- Pinch of kosher salt
*Optional: 2 tsp of nut butter
Place oats, honey, cinnamon, salt, your choice of liquid and nut butter, if using, in a small serving bowl and stir to combine. Cover with plastic wrap and place in the fridge overnight.
*Vegan Substitution: Omit the honey and sweeten with agave instead!
In the morning, top up your oats with your fruit of choice, a handful of nuts or seeds and some greek yogurt or cottage cheese. Your healthy and energizing breakfast is good to go!
Harvard health. “Breaking the Fast.” Harvard Health Publishing, 1 June 2011, https://www.health.harvard.edu/staying-healthy/breaking-the-fast.
Ballon, Aurelie, et al. “Breakfast Skipping Is Associated with Increased Risk of Type 2 Diabetes among Adults: A Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis of Prospective Cohort Studies.” The Journal of Nutrition, Jan. 2019, https://academic.oup.com/jn/article/149/1/106/5167902.