There are two types of people in this world: Those who dream about their A.M. Dunkin’ runs, and those who wouldn’t even consider munching until after their midday meetings. So, who’s got the right idea? Breakfast has built itself a reputation, branded by many as the most important meal of the day. Although we’re huuuuge breakfast fans, it’s hard to be certain whether this is a solid fact or loose fiction encouraged by enthusiastic morning people. There are a few factors at play, like gender, sex, weight, lifestyle, exercise habits, and the food you break your fast with. What we do know is that if you’re starting your day with a balanced meal featuring three food groups, it’s definitely going to give you a boost. If you needed more reasons to jump on the breakfast bandwagon, we’ve got four!
Breakfast Feeds Your Brain
Did your parents ever push for breakfast before a big test when you were younger? If so, they weren’t too off base. Studies show that students who eat a meal before school are more academically productive and alert. Adding breakfast to your routine can also help raise your energy levels, improve memory, and keep the brain fog at bay. Those who forgo their breakfast grits have also reported slower responses and a shorter attention span.
Eating Breakfast Helps Keep Your Heart Healthy
If you wake up craving a frittata, here’s the go-ahead to follow your heart. Yep—enjoying whole-food eats before you embark on a day of errands can improve your cardiovascular health. Missing out on your morning meal has been known to send cholesterol levels sky-high, which is directly linked to heart disease. If you squeeze in the right nutrients, you can keep your blood pressure stabilized. However, if your breakfast only consists of sweet cereal, it could lead to an untimely blood sugar crash later on. You want to make sure your breakfasts are packed with complex carbs, fiber, protein, fruits, and plenty of veg.
Balanced breakfasts we love
- Two hard-boiled eggs, cheddar cheese, and an apple
- Whole grain toast with nut butter and bananas
- Overnight oats (creative inspo here!) and a side of scrambled eggs
- Our Protein Power Sausage Breakfast with Butternut Squash & Potato Hash*
Breakfast Improves Morning Morale
Nobody likes when hanger hits. If you wake up with your favorite dish, you can set yourself up for less stress and irritability as the day goes on. Studies have even shown that breakfast eaters are less prone to depression than people who skip. Eating specific foods can also provide you with the following feel-good nutrients. Check out this helpful breakfast nutrition chart:
|Thiamine (vitamin B1)||Seeds, legumes, and fortified grains and cereals||Boosts energy and aids in nerve and muscle activity|
|Folate (vitamin B9)||Legumes, leafy greens, and fortified grains||Helps nerve function and aids in red blood cell production|
|Iron||Eggs, spinach, raisins, tofu, nuts, potatoes, and fortified cereals and breads||Prevents fatigue and depression|
|Omega-3s||Black walnuts, flaxseed, chia seeds, egg yolks, and hempseed||Improves your memory and mood|
|Phenylethylamine (PEA)||Dark chocolate||Releases natural endorphins|
Eating Breakfast Maintains Your Physical Health
Powering up with breakfast can potentially keep extra pounds from creeping on. Whether you’re just starting a health journey or want to stay where you’re at, studies show that nutritious breakfasts can help prevent unwanted weight gain. It sounds counterintuitive though, right? Eating more meals can guide you to your goals? That’s because when you fuel with breakfast, you’re less likely to snack or overeat at lunch and dinner. Of course, you should always be listening to your hunger cues. If you still have an hour or two to go before lunch and you’re feeling peckish, dunk apple slices in peanut butter or have a handful of nuts. Eating in the morning doesn’t mean you won’t be hungry for the rest of the day, but it can help you jumpstart your metabolism, control your portions, and make mindful meal choices.