5 Reasons to Join the Breakfast Club
“Breakfast” literally means to “break the fast” – it’s no wonder why it’s been nicknamed the most important meal of the day! If you think about it, it makes sense since this is the first time our bodies receive any type of nourishment for 7+ hours. The number one rule of the breakfast club is to never skip! However, it’s important to recognize that it’s not just about eating anything when you first wake up; it’s about eating the right things! To wake up on the right side of the bed, you’ll need to fuel your body with foods that are packed with the nutrients. Making a conscious effort to begin the day with a healthy meal has been linked to countless long-term health benefits. It also helps your body function at it’s best, both physically and mentally each day.
Top 5 Reasons Why You Should Join The Breakfast Club!
- Caffeine-free energy booster: Sure, your healthy breakfast can include a cup of coffee (or two!) but a well-balanced morning meal can do the trick as well! Upon first waking up, our glycogen levels are low. Eating a healthy breakfast will restore blood sugar levels, which consequently provides energy. (1) Long story short – skipping breakfast can make your morning productivity take a turn for the worst.
- Be a Brainiac! When we think of our most productive days, we rarely thank breakfast for being a contributor. In reality, food is the fuel for our brain power much like gas for a car. However, while it doesn’t really matter what brand of unleaded you put in your tank because the result is the same, the type of food we choose to put in our bodies will affect our cognitive performance in different ways. Food is converted to glucose, which in turn gives our brains the ability to stay alert. For example, foods high in carbohydrates (pasta, white bread, soda) will cause a spike of energy followed by a slump; foods high in fat will give more sustained energy but our digestive system needs to work harder, reducing oxygen levels in the brain; eating small, frequent, and well-balanced meals will keep glucose levels consistent providing sustainable energy throughout the day. (5)
- Natural Appetite Suppressant: A lot of people skip breakfast in efforts to “save” calories the rest of the day. More commonly than not, this actually causes increased hunger throughout the day and triggers late night binges. Also, the prolonging fasting that occurs can increase your body’s insulin response, which in turn increases fat storage resulting in weight gain. (3)
- Increase your Metabolism: When you go a long period of time without eating, your metabolism slows down. When you sleep, your metabolism automatically slows because it has fewer requirements. To kick your metabolism into high gear each day, a healthy breakfast is needed otherwise it will stay at a level consistent with sleep mode. Further, studies have shown that eating breakfast can increase your resting metabolism by up to 10 percent! (3)
- A “Happy” meal that isn’t fast food: Eating foods like donuts or cereal loaded with sugar will cause a spike of energy immediately followed by a crash – commonly referred to as a “sugar crash.” (2) Blood sugar spikes and lows are a constant instigator – it causes fatigue, irritability, and most of all — a “hangry” attitude!
For those of us (like me!) that love to hit the snooze button in the mornings, this seemingly simple choice can be more difficult than it sounds. The key is to plan: If you’re not a morning person, take 15 minutes before bedtime to make something that you can grab on the way to work or stock your cabinet and fridge with portable items from the grocery store such as fruit, low-fat yogurt, or whole grain breakfast bars for those mornings when you have to eat on the go. I normally make an egg-white bake on Sunday so I have breakfast for the entire week! Check out Jillian Michael’s recipe that I use here.
Feel free to share below any healthy breakfast tips or recipes you have! 🙂