Quick and Healthy Breakfast Choices
A healthy breakfast is a very important and integral way to begin your day. Researchers have documented over and over again the importance of beginning your day with a healthy and satisfying meal. Individuals who eat a balanced breakfast have lower incidences of heart disease, better overall health, lower body-to-mass index and more stable blood sugar levels throughout the morning. Stable blood sugar levels enable you to be more productive and able to concentrate for longer periods.
Children also benefit greatly from eating a balanced, nutritious breakfast. They are better able to concentrate on their schoolwork, are more physically active, maintain a healthier body weight and demonstrate better problem-solving skills. Children who eat a healthy breakfast also miss less school and tend to have a more positive outlook on life.
Defining a Healthy Breakfast
A healthy breakfast includes a balance of lean protein, healthy fats, fiber and complex carbohydrates. This combination will keep you full for hours and will sustain you throughout the morning. If you choose to skip breakfast, you will end up feeling drained, tired, probably moody and far less productive than you would be otherwise. This low-level of energy is frequently due to a low blood sugar level.
If you start your day with only a cup of coffee and a pastry, the “blood sugar blues” will be further exacerbated. Your body could also be higher because most people who skip breakfast end up eating the same amount of calories as they would if they ate breakfast, the caveat being that most of they eat these calories at the end of the day when they are less active and less able to burn the calories. The result: calories are stored as fat.
Also, if you skip breakfast, by lunchtime you will be so hungry that you will be likely to grab a high-fat meal instead of taking the time to choose a healthier option. Does this sound familiar, “I know I should go down to the salad place, but a cheeseburger and fries won’t hurt just this one time.” Eventually, poor food choices catch up with all of us.
Fast Tricks for a Quick Breakfast
Even if you are rushed in the morning, there are a number of healthy and quick ways to eat a nutritious breakfast. You may even want to consider preparing breakfast the night before so that you are ready to go in the morning. Some ideas for easy, delicious and quick breakfasts are granola topped with yogurt and fresh or frozen berries, a bowl of hot oatmeal with cranberries, flax seeds and nuts or a “gourmet” protein shake.
A basic protein shake consists of milk, yogurt and protein powder as a basic recipe. You can individualize a protein shake in endless ways. For example, you could use almond milk instead of regular milk, Greek yogurt for a hardier texture, fresh blueberries and a spirulina powder for energy. You may even want to add a vitamin and mineral powdered supplement to your shake so that you are sure that you are meeting all of your nutritional needs.
A protein shake can easily be made the night before and refrigerated so that you can “grab and go” in the morning. These are some quick and easy ways to enjoy a healthy and nutritious breakfast.
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