It’s 3:00 pm and you overhear someone in the office proudly say, “All I’ve had today is a cup of coffee!” For some reason people often see skipping meals as a badge of honor, but if they really want to lose weight and have more energy, they’re doing it all wrong. According to a report in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, people who eat in the morning have smaller waistlines than those who don’t. It’s a message you’ve heard before, but I’ll say it again -- Eat Breakfast!
My love affair with breakfast started when I was just a little girl. My mom would prepare a full hot meal every single morning before school. We had poached eggs on English muffins, Cream of Wheat and fresh fruit, soft boiled eggs in pretty little cups, and much more. This started a lifelong habit of waking up hungry and ready to eat, but your morning meal certainly doesn’t need to be a fancy affair.
What should I eat?
Start by eating anything at all, but if you really want to get your engine revving, then focus on whole grains, protein, and fiber.
A great traditional choice is the incredible, edible egg. In an eight week study conducted by The International Journal of Obesity, they found that dieters who ate two eggs, toast and jelly for breakfast five days a week lost 65% more weight than those who had a same-calorie bagel breakfast without eggs.
Other excellent options are yogurt, oatmeal, homemade smoothies, fruit or 100% whole grain breads and cereals (at least five grams of fiber per serving). If you’re in a hurry, you can even grab a protein bar or almond butter sandwich on your way out the door.
And don’t be afraid to eat 300-400 calories depending on your size and goals. I hear so many people say that eating breakfast makes them hurgrier. So?? It also makes you leaner, more energetic and alert. If this bothers you, then break your breakfast into two parts, one when you first wake up and the other mid-morning so you’re not ravenous by lunch.
If you don’t like “breakfast foods” that’s ok too. You can just eat leftovers or something else you enjoy. My college roommate fell into this category and could often be found eating asparagus and grilled chicken at 8:00 am. If you’re not ready for all that, you could always opt for some whole grain crackers and cheese or nuts and a banana.
If a lack of hunger is the problem, then start by foregoing you morning cup of joe for a few hours. Coffee can act as an appetite suppressant which will actually work against you in this case. Like anything, you will also notice your morning hunger naturally increasing after your body gets used to being fed.
It’s always great to be given permission to eat more, so stop the excuses and join the breakfast club.