It’s usually named because the most significant meal of the day and, in terms of weight loss, your breakfast can set the tone for the day ahead.
But what are the dos and don’ts when it comes to starting your day right?
Here are nutritionist Kim Pearson’s top five tips to ensuring your first meal of the day is weight-loss friendly.
Don’t Skip Breakfast
Unless you’re following a time-restricted eating plan with a reduced eating window, which involves starting your food intake later in the day, don’t be tempted to skip breakfast. The chances are you’ll end up paying for it later on.
Many clients I consult for weight loss have traditionally skipped breakfast to ‘save calories’ however find yourself compensating for this later within the day with sugary afternoon snacks or an inability to stop eating once they’ve finished dinner.
Starting the day with a decent breakfast can reduce your chances of overeating later on.
The most important thing to remember with breakfast is that you just need this meal to fuel you right through until lunch so that you’re not tempted to snack on biscuits, and you have plenty of energy and focus to power your morning. Lots of people reach for starchy carbs thinking toast or cereal will kick-start their day, but including a good source of protein is a much better option for slow-release energy and to keep you fuller for longer.
Try eggs and avocado on rye bread for a great combination of protein, healthy fat and slow-release carbs that will keep energized and satisfied until lunchtime.
Shake it to Wake It
Avoid on-the-go options like breakfast bars and biscuits that are usually packed with sugar and likely to cause mid-morning energy dips and cravings. Instead, if you’re pressed for time, grab a protein smoothie on the way out the door. Combine a scoop of excellent quality protein powder, a healthy fat supply (nuts, seeds, avocado), some vegetables (spinach, courgette), a portion of fruit (mixed berries) and a slug of nut milk into a blender and blitz for 30 seconds.
Hey presto, a balanced, nutritious meal which will keep you glad all morning.
Don’t leave your breakfast choices to the last minute. Careful planning is a key element in all weight loss and healthy eating regimes. Spontaneous meal decisions, or those made when hungry, are usually the least healthy so consider preparing your breakfast in advance.
Egg muffins, chia seed puddings, and pre-prepared smoothie ingredients (which can be frozen in portions) are all good examples. This way you can wake up and enjoy the perfect healthy breakfast even before your brain is in gear for the day.
Keep a Routine
Aim to eat breakfast at roughly the same time each day. Studies have shown that having irregular meals could increase your likelihood of obesity, high blood pressure, and type 2 diabetes, regardless of the number of calories you’re consuming.
Regular mealtimes may facilitate to control our circadian rhythms. Some of my clients find themselves so busy they forget to eat when they should. If you find this to be the case, setting an alarm in your phone can help remind you to eat before it’s time to rush out of the door.