I get it – everyone is busy. When people get busy, priorities are redefined and some things, often important things, get pushed to the side and ignored. Breakfast falls into this category. I can’t begin to count how many people I know who skip this most vital meal of the day, citing lack of time as their excuse. Friends of mine struggle to get out of bed early enough to make it to work, let alone have time to prepare (a nutritious) breakfast. If you have any sort of health and fitness goals and you fall into this category, this behaviour has to stop. And now. Here’s why:
Breakfast physically breaks your fast from the night before when your body was at rest. Injecting food into your body in the morning is your energy. It is what starts your motor and keeps it running through to lunch (or mid-morning) and ensures you have adequate energy to embrace the day.
Eating a healthy breakfast provides you with a boost of nutrients. Studies have consistently shown that those who eat breakfast eat more vitamins and minerals, have better concentration and productivity throughout the morning, are better able to control their weight and have lower cholesterol. The carbohydrates and fibre in a typical breakfast dish provides the energy that helps the body feel less tired throughout the day
Before you think that adding another meal to your day will make you gain weight, consider this: a 2003 study in the American Journal of Epidemiology showed that people who skip breakfast are 4.5 times more likely to be obese than those who consume a morning meal. Separate research has also shown that eating high-energy foods for breakfast could help to boost short-term memory.
So what does a healthy breakfast look like? Breakfast should consist of healthy carbohydrates, protein and good fats. Think avocado on dark grain toast, poached eggs on wholegrain toast with spinach, or berries with plain yoghurt and crushed nuts. If you are a cereal fan, get rid of those sugar-laden, processed cereals and opt for plain muesli or granola with milk (dairy or other, such as almond milk, hemp milk etc.) or make your own using organic unprocessed oats with nuts, seeds and your choice of dried fruits, such as goji berries.
If you are really pushed for time, go for a smoothie. These things can be made using very few ingredients and are ready in under 2 minutes. You can even pour them straight into a bottle or jar and drink while on the run out the door. Check out my almond butter banana smoothie recipe here for smoothie inspiration or make up your own.
There are no excuses for not incorporating a healthy breakfast into your daily routine. Consider this meal the same as your morning shower or brushing your teeth. You wouldn’t leave the house without that so why do it to breakfast?