Another staple of the American breakfast - the donut - is an absolutely empty breakfast, with lots of calories and artery-aging trans fat but no nutrition. Instead of eating the same thing every morning, use breakfast time to stimulate your imagination: Try unconventional breakfast foods, such as chopped vegetables with a handful of low-fat whole grain crackers, or a corn tortilla loaded with beans, lettuce, and tomato. If you own a juicer, you can make carrot or tomato juice mixed with celery, spinach, and other vegetables. It's a time-saving, nutrient-rich, and fat-free way to begin the day.
A Answers (11)
Michael Roizen, MD, Internal Medicine, answeredUnfortunately, many staples of the classic American breakfast, such as bacon and sausage, are full of four-legged or saturated fats, and should be avoided. What about another classic staple - the egg? Luckily, only the yolk of the egg is high in fat and cholesterol, so egg-white and vegetable omelets with salsa - no cheese - are a delicious low-cholesterol, low-fat breakfast choice. (The average omelet made with three egg whites in a little canola oil has less than 2 grams of healthy fat and only 75 to 125 calories.) Or, if you can't bear to go completely yolk-free, one yolk included with three whites makes a scramble or omelet look and taste almost like a regular one. If you crave pancakes or waffles for breakfast, cook them in a nonstick pan or in one coated with low-fat vegetable spray. Top with chopped fruit and a sprinkle of powdered sugar instead of mounds of butter and syrup.
Another staple of the American breakfast - the donut - is an absolutely empty breakfast, with lots of calories and artery-aging trans fat but no nutrition. Instead of eating the same thing every morning, use breakfast time to stimulate your imagination: Try unconventional breakfast foods, such as chopped vegetables with a handful of low-fat whole grain crackers, or a corn tortilla loaded with beans, lettuce, and tomato. If you own a juicer, you can make carrot or tomato juice mixed with celery, spinach, and other vegetables. It's a time-saving, nutrient-rich, and fat-free way to begin the day.Helpful? 3 people found this helpful.
Marjorie Nolan Cohn, Nutrition & Dietetics, answered on behalf of Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics
Here is a list of healthy breakfast foods. For a healthy breakfast, combine foods from the different food groups. Choose one from three of the four food groups for a healthy balanced breakfast. The portion of each of the foods should be based on your weight, gender, activity level and/or goals. A dietitian can help you determine how much of each to eat for breakfast.
- Dairy/Protein: low-fat or fat-free yogurt, milk, cottage cheese, cheese, egg or egg whites, or even a lean protein like sliced turkey or chicken breast.
- Carbs: Whole grain toast, cereal, granola, or oats.
- Fats: natural nut butters, raw nuts or seeds, avocado, olive oil
- Fruit: whole fruit
Nothing can be easier than a bowl of whole grain cereal doused with skim milk and topped with fruit. There's minimal preparation involved and clean-up is a cinch as the bowl and spoon go straight into the dishwasher.
If you would rather eat at the office, do this: On Monday, bring in a box of whole grain cereal, 5 yogurts and 5 pieces of fruit to work. Store the fruit and yogurt in your company refrigerator. Presto: you have breakfast for the entire week.
Here are some suggestions for healthy breakfast meals:
- Whole grain tortilla spread with a nutbutter and a banana and sliced into bite sized pieces;
- Toasted whole wheat waffle topped with cottage cheese, fruit and nuts;
- Trail mix consisting of whole grain cereal, dried fruit and nuts;
- Oatmeal cooked with sliced apples, cinnamon and sugar substitute;
- Graham crackers dipped in vanilla yogurt and sliced banana;
- Egg white omelet with chopped broccoli, spinach and carrots served with a whole grain English muffin.
Keri Gans, Nutrition & Dietetics, answeredHere’s a shopping list of must-have breakfast items to stock in your kitchen. You can find these items anywhere, and three favorites are usually enough to satisfy dieters:
- high-fiber cold cereal
- nonfat or low-fat milk
- nonfat or low-fat yogurt
- nonfat or low-fat cottage cheese
- eggs/egg whites
- natural peanut butter or other nut butters
- whole-wheat English muffin
- crushed walnuts or almonds
Find out more about this book:The Small Change Diet: 10 Steps to a Thinner, Healthier You
The benefits of breakfast are almost too numerous to list. Breakfast wakes up your metabolism after sleep and starts you burning calories. It reduces stress hormones and improves your mood.
A healthy breakfast is not made of processed foods and they are not all from one food-type (carbohydrates, or proteins). A healthy breakfast should have the same qualities that make up a good dinner: fresh ingredients and a blend of protein, fat and carbohydrate. In fact, in many countries a typical breakfast is composed out of the leftovers of what was used to make traditional dinners!
Here are my four principles regarding breakfast:
- Any breakfast is better than no breakfast. Eat something, even if it's little.
- Eat what you like. This is a corollary to #1. If you don't like it you won't eat it, no matter how much you think you should.
- Be guided by moderation. A bagel is not a great breakfast because it is all refined carbohydrates, but it isn't going to kill you if you eat it once a month. Try to create balance across a week, rather than be perfect every day.
- Diversify your food types. What makes a good dinner makes a good breakfast -- that is, a mixture of protein, carbohydrates, and fat. Just eggs? Not great. Eggs with
Embrace breakfast; take the time to eat it. And there's much more about eating healthy by eating what you love in my new book, Eating Free: The Carb Friendly Way to Lose Inches, Embrace Your Hunger, and Keep Weight Off for Good!
Sherry Coleman Collins, Nutrition & Dietetics, answered
Breakfast is a great way to get a jumpstart on a healthy day. After the night's fast, your body is ready for some energy to stoke the fire. In addition, breakfast can be the set up for your hunger and satiety throughout the day. Choosing a nourishing breakfast doesn't have to be time consuming. Pairing some sort of whole grain, like oatmeal or even a whole grain waffle, with a source of good fat and protein, like peanut butter, can help provide energy that sticks with you. Add fruit, like chopped apples, and you have an even more nutrient rich and filling way to start the day. Finally, be sure to drink plenty of water in the morning, a cup or two even before coffee.
Sarah LoBisco, Integrative Medicine, answered
Recent evidence supports blood sugar balance as vital for all aspects of health. In fact, blood sugar management is a key factor in weight management and also helps mitigate the risk for diabetes, heart disease, and many other diseases of chronic inflammation.
A variety of scientific evidence supports eating high quality protein at breakfast as a means to keep blood sugar levels even. Protein also provides vital components of brain amino acids which form neurotransmitters related to satiety and mood. In fact, kids that eat breakfast have better grades, moods, and focus in school. Adults who don't skip on this most important meal also have favorable outcomes, they even tend to have better weight management and curb late night cravings.
I usually recommend my patients to balance the protein, carbohydrate, and healthy fat content at every meal and snack. This curbs hunger and feeds the brain of vital nutrients (remember you are literally a fat head-the brain is mostly fat!)
Eggs are a great breakfast option. The fat fallacy of eggs raising cholesterol is long-gone! In fact, you only make 15% of cholesterol from actual food intake (the rest is made in the liver as a means to produce hormones, and other vital cellular components). Studies show that eggs raise cholesterol levels less than .5% in those who are sensitive to food cholesterol. Most people can eat at least one egg safely a day. Eggs provide importance factors in body metabolism such as protein, B12, and other vital nutrients.
Here are some examples:
- organic egg omelet with carrots and spinach
- Organic peanut butter on gluten free toast
- Whey protein smoothie with coconut milk and berries or fresh vegetables
- Gluten free oatmeal with ground flax seed, berries, and almonds
- Gluten free pancakes topped with raw ghee and low sugar fruit spread with organic chicken or turkey sausage
Rose Reisman, Nutrition & Dietetics, answeredHere are some great foods for breakfast:
- Eggs provide the B vitamin choline that helps enhance memory, and the protein provides long lasting energy. Pair the eggs with fruit and low-fat milk for a complete brain boost.
- Oatmeal contains soluble fiber, which prevents plaque from building in your arteries. It fills you up with protein and carbohydrates. Add low-fat milk and some nuts for extra protein.
- Blueberries help to improve memory and lessen symptoms of depression.
- Good old coffee increases alertness, concentration, and energy levels due to the antioxidants, but sip in moderation -- you can have up to four 8-ounce cups. But don’t pair your coffee with a doughnut; that’s a brain-draining food!
Kathleen Hall, Preventive Medicine, answeredYou don't have to wake up in time to cook a huge breakfast. It only takes 5 - 10 minutes to eat a bowl of cereal with low-fat milk and fruit. Try yogurt mixed with your cereal. If you don't like traditional breakfast food, eat a sandwich. Eat frozen waffles or pancakes with fruit or light syrup. This is a great time to be creative with what's in the refrigerator. Mix leftover vegetables from last night's dinner with scrambled eggs. What matters is that you are eating something and that it is relatively healthy: preferably with protein, fruit, and fiber.
Find out more about this book:Alter Your Life: Overbooked? Overworked? Overwhelmed?
Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics answeredBreakfast is one of the best times to eat whole grains, fruits and milk. And a nutrient-packed start to your day can give you energy to perform better, both mentally and physically.
Following are some sample combinations that are packed with fiber, calcium and other vital nutrients your body and brain need to thrive. These combinations are great in the morning, and can be eaten at lunch or dinner, too:
Helpful? 6 people found this helpful.
- Fresh pineapple chunks mixed with low-fat cottage cheese and a slice of whole-wheat toast with apple butter
- A whole-wheat English muffin topped with soft margarine and a hard-boiled egg
- Whole-grain or bran cereal with low-fat or fat-free milk and shaved almonds, served with a piece of fresh fruit
- Oatmeal topped with a sprinkle of brown sugar and walnut halves
- An egg-white omelet loaded with peppers and low-fat cheddar cheese in a toasted whole-wheat pita pocket and served with low-fat milk
- Multigrain pancakes or waffles topped with banana slices
- Nonfat yogurt topped with low-fat granola and dried apricots