Breakfast Gets High Grades

By Roseanne Jones, MS, RD, CDN 

Do you eat breakfast? If no, what is your excuse?  Not enough time?  Not hungry in the morning (could be the late night snacks)?  Don’t like breakfast foods?  If there is one single best healthful habit, it has to be eating breakfast!

Here’s why everyone needs to eat breakfast:

  • After a night of sleep your body goes into starvation mode and the metabolism slows down.  Without breakfast to kick start the metabolism the body will stay at the lower metabolic rate and continue to burn less calories until it gets food.
  • Studies show that Americans who skip breakfast are 4 ½ times more likely to be overweight.
  • Adolescents who eat breakfast make better food choices throughout the day.
  • Children who eat breakfast get higher grades in school and are less likely to be depressed, anxious or irritable.
  • Breakfast eating children also behave better in school, have a better attitude toward school and are more likely to stay alert.
  • You just plain feel better! When you start the day with a healthful meal it sets the tone for how you will eat for the rest of the day.

If you’re just starting a breakfast habit you can start out slow by eating something small like a piece of fruit, a glass of milk or a cup of yogurt then build up to a healthful habit of including both protein and fiber that can fight off hunger until lunchtime.

Mornings can be hectic so here are a few ideas for a quick breakfast:

  • Leftovers from last night’s dinner – What?!  No one said it had to be breakfast food!
  • Instant oatmeal made with milk, add some chopped apples and cinnamon for flavor
  • Toasted frozen waffles with cut strawberries and whipped cream served with a cup of milk
  • Cold cereal and milk, sprinkled with blueberries
  • Peanut butter on an English muffin topped with slices of banana
  • Yogurt parfait: layer fruit, yogurt then granola
  • Quick Breakfast Burrito, recipe from Incredible Edible Egg:              

               1 flour tortilla (6-inch)
               1 egg
               1 Tbsp. shredded cheese blend
               1 Tbsp. salsa and/or avocado

To cook in the tortilla:

Place tortilla on a plate and microwave for 5 seconds.  Line a 2-cup microwave-safe cereal bowl with microwave-safe paper towel. Press the tortilla into bowl.

  • Break the egg another bowl and beat with a fork until blended.  Pour the egg into the tortilla. Add salt and pepper if desired.
  • Microwave on HIGH for 30 seconds. Gently stir and microwave until egg is almost set, 15 to 30 seconds longer.
  • Remove tortilla with paper towel liner from bowl to flat surface. Top egg with cheese and salsa. Fold bottom of tortilla over egg, then fold in sides.

Tips: Substitute with whole wheat flour tortilla and low fat shredded cheese. Look for > 2 gm of Fiber in grain products and don’t forget that using canned and frozen fruit and vegetables is a good option too.

What are some ways you plan to make your breakfast better?

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