Dr. Ajay KohliNov 3, 2023
Breakfast is considered to be the most important meal of the day, as it gives the energy to kickstart the daily routine. It is important to focus on eating a healthy breakfast, which is loaded with the right amounts of vitamins and minerals, as having a healthy breakfast will help regulate sugar levels in the blood and provide you with adequate energy to get you through the day. Read ahead to know about 10 best healthy breakfast options to stay energetic and healthy.
To ensure that you are getting the right mix of carbohydrates, protein, and fibre, along with a small amount of fat, your breakfast should include food items from the following four groups.
Wholegrains: Such as whole grain bread, rolls or bagels, and wholegrain cereals.
Lean protein: This includes eggs, fish, nuts, and lean meat.
Low-fat dairy: Dairy products such as milk, low-fat cheese, and plain yoghurt.
Fruits and vegetables: Consuming whole fresh fruits and vegetables or in the form of smoothies and juice.
Yes, breakfast is your first meal of the day. It fuels you for an action-packed productive day. Skipping breakfast might be harmful for most people, especially kids. A nutritious breakfast is key to good health.
It is important to have the right mix of essential nutrients in your breakfast and look for a variety of food options so that the first meal of the day doesn’t become boring. Here, we list the top 10 food items to include in your breakfast to maintain healthy body weight and balanced blood sugar levels.
Oatmeal/Porridge: Wholegrain oats are packed with proteins, vitamins, fibre, minerals, and antioxidants. The fibre contained in oats helps reduce your cholesterol, which prevents heart diseases and regulates the sugar levels in blood. Oats are also good sources of omega-3 fatty acids, potassium, folate, and antioxidants. They have low glycemic index (GI) which makes it a good option for diabetics. The best way to make oatmeal is to cook it with milk without any added sugar. For added flavour, you may add a hint of cinnamon, yoghurt, nuts, or fruits.
Eggs: Besides being a rich source of protein, eggs contain antioxidants, vitamins, and nutrients such as choline. Choline helps maintain a healthy liver and brain. However, having too many eggs in a day is not advisable as eggs can increase cholesterol levels. You can have your eggs in hard-boiled form or as poached or scrambled form along with wholegrain toast.
Toast and nut butter: Wholegrain bread and peanut butter that does not contain any added sugar and oil is a good way of providing healthy fats and energy to your body. Additionally, you can top it up with fruits such as strawberry slices. Other nut butters that you can use are almond butter, cashew butter, and unsweetened cocoa and hazelnut butter.
Cereals: A bowl of cereal with low-fat milk can be a very healthy breakfast option. While buying cereals, look for whole grain options that do not have added sugar in it.
Yoghurt: All yoghurt, especially creamy Greek-style yoghurt is laden with proteins. Opting for low-fat versions of the same is a healthier option. Some of these yoghurts contain ‘live cultures’ of bacteria which are good for the gut. Avoid having yoghurt that has added sugar or flavour in it. Instead you can eat it with nuts, berries, or seeds, to give it a healthier, crunchier twist.
Smoothies: Smoothies can be very filling and a good way of consuming your 1/5 portions of fruits and vegetables in a day. When coupled with milk or yoghurt, they contain extra protein. A small glass of smoothie (approximately 150ml) is equivalent to 1 of your 5 portions of daily fruit and vegetable intake. It is advisable not to go overboard and stick to one glass of smoothie only as it can be high in sugar. A great way to make a vitamin-enriched smoothie is by blending together some semi-skimmed milk with spinach, banana, and blueberries. You can top it up with flax seeds as these are good sources of healthy fats.
Fish: It is recommended to consume two portions of fish in a week, as it has many health benefits. Besides being a very high source of protein, fish is a rich source of omega-3 fats that are good for heart health. All things considered, it may be a little difficult to eat fish at the start of the day.
Cottage cheese:A powerhouse of proteins, cottage cheese can be as filling as eggs. Fortified with vitamin A and B as well as calcium, it can be eaten as such or tossed with pepper and spring onions. It can also be mixed with fruits and nuts.
Berries: Berries including strawberries, blueberries, blackberries, and raspberries are an excellent source of antioxidants. They are packed with fibre and are low in calories. The antioxidants present in berries are known to lower the risk of heart attack in young women. Berries can be had along with oatmeal, cereals, yoghurt, or included in smoothies too.
Home-made breakfast bars: Most of the readymade ‘breakfast’ bars or granola bars available in the market are high in sugar and processed ingredients. Hence, making your own breakfast energy bar makes a lot of sense. Mix together some oats, chopped nuts, dried fruit such as dates along with peanut butter and spread it on a tray to bake it. The end product that you get is rich in protein, fibre, vitamins and minerals.
Highly refined cereals
Highly processed foods
Foods with high sugar content
Packaged foods with high sodium content
Foods laden with preservatives
Foods not fit for the current weather
A good breakfast will ensure you have a great start to your day. Make sure to fill up your plate or bowl with all the essential nutrients needed to fuel your day. Good food contributes to a good mood!
Breakfast replenishes the stores of energy and nutrients in the body after the night-time fast. It is important to not skip breakfast because one meal less during the day can lead to a failure to meet the daily requirements of vitamins, minerals, and fibres.
People who have a habit of regularly eating breakfast are less likely to become overweight or obese. There are two reasons behind this. Firstly, eating breakfast prevents large fluctuations in glucose levels, thereby controlling your appetite. Secondly, if you have regular breakfast, it will give you a feeling of fullness and not allow you to binge on fatty foods during the course of the day.
Having breakfast affects your mental performance by improving your attention span, memory power, and ability to concentrate. On the contrary, if you skip having breakfast, you might feel dull and sluggish throughout the day. This is because your brain does not receive the required energy (glucose) to boost your brainpower.
People who generally have breakfast on a daily basis make better food choices. They are less likely to be hungry during the day and snack on foods high in fat and salt. Children who skip breakfast tend to grow up making poor food choices. People who do not have breakfast but feel hungry during mid-morning or afternoon, turn to high-energy food and drinks to stop them from feeling tired and lethargic.
Compared to people who don’t have breakfast regularly, those who do, tend to have lower risk of developing lifestyle-related diseases such as obesity and type 2 diabetes. Studies have shown that people who skip breakfast are also likely to develop cardiovascular diseases.
Disclaimer: The content on this page is generic and shared only for informational and explanatory purposes. It is based on several secondary sources on the internet. Please consult a doctor before making any health-related decisions.
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