Many people skip breakfast, either for lack of time or ideas. Don’t worry – I get it! Mornings are hectic – if you are a mum, you are probably getting the kids ready for school, making sure they eat a nutritious breakfast themselves, getting lunch boxes sorted, notes signed, nappies changed, not to mention getting yourself ready for the day! And if you are sans kids, you might have to be at work super early for an important meeting, or hit the snooze button for a few extra minutes sleep which turns into another 15 minutes or more, and now you are running late for work!!
Given the morning rush, are you guilty of any of the following:
1. Skipping breakfast altogether?
A healthy breakfast gives you a good start to the day and if you are skipping this meal, you may not be eating enough at the right times and then end up starving by mid morning and snacking on the wrong foods. Studies have also shown that people who eat breakfast usually weigh less and those who skip the first meal of the day tend to choose higher-calorie foods later at mid-morning or lunch.
2. Eating breakfast on the run?
You might pick up something quick on the way out like a granola bar or bakery item and scoff it down in the car or on the train. Eating in a hurry means we are not eating mindfully. If you think back to previous blogs on mindfulness, when we don’t do things mindfully, we end up engaging in bad habits. This is also the case with eating – we end up consuming more calories when we eat on the go.
3. Eating high-carb, low-protein foods for breakfast like sugary cereals?
This can result in a blood sugar spike followed by a mid-morning energy crash where you are hungry and craving something sweet. Also, these foods are easier for the body to digest giving you a quick energy boost but this is very short-lived. Foods high in fibre, protein and healthy fats help keep you fuller for longer and curb any sugary cravings.
So, if you are guilty of any of the above, take some time to think about your breakfast options and aim to eat a high-protein breakfast. This can help with weight loss, reduce cravings and hunger throughout the day and decrease snacking.
Around 30 grams of protein is ideal to kick start your metabolism, as well as help build and repair muscle tissue which is especially important if you are working out so you can continue to burn fat after your workouts – remember the “afterburn effect” we talked about in previous blogs or excess post-exercise oxygen consumption (EPOC)?
Here are a few breakfast ideas that have around 30g of protein to give you an idea of what you should be aiming to eat:
- 180g plain Greek Yoghurt
- Handful of sliced almonds
- ½ cup raspberries or blueberries
- 1 egg, plus 2 egg whites
- ½ cup spinach
- a small stick of crumbled feta
- some shredded chicken (optional)
Banana Peanut Butter Smoothie
- 1 small frozen banana
- 2 teaspoons peanut butter
- 1 teaspoon chia seeds
- ½ cup unsweetened almond milk
- 1 cup plain Greek yoghurt (optional)
- 1 wholewheat tortilla
- 1 egg plus 2 eggwhites
- ¼ cup black beans
- ¼ cup shredded cheese
- Sliced tomato
- 1 slice wholewheat toast
- ¼ avocado
- 50 g smoked salmon
- 1 egg
So, this week, revisit your breakfast choices and ensure you get a great start to your day!