You might think of it as just another task that’s going to make you miss the train, but experts point to breakfast as the key to a better day – and body. “The right-sized breakfast can supercharge your metabolism, provide you with an abundance of energy, keep you focused and alert, balance your moods and regulate your blood sugar levels – all by supplying your body with a nutrient-rich start to the day,” says nutritionist Casey-Lee Lyons (livelovenourish.com.au), adding that getting the morning mix right is vital when it comes to staying trim. Here’s what to aim for:
Don’t hold back – eating approximately a quarter of your daily intake first thing will boost your metabolism, carry you through to your next meal without cravings and reduce the likelihood of overeating later in the day, according to Lyons.
We should be eating a gram of protein for every kilo we carry, advises dietician Sarah Leung (healthyenergy.net.au), and higher-protein diets can help us stay fuller longer, while reducing cravings. Load up on eggs, plain Greek yoghurt or smoked salmon to hit the mark.
20% healthy fats
Avocado, nuts, coconut or coconut oil and nut butters all provide long-lasting energy sources, curb sugar cravings and leave you satisfied for longer, so make a fifth of your meal fat-based, says Lyons. Just keep animal-based saturated fats, like butter, milk and cheese, to a minimum.
1-15 grams sugar
“Too much sugar will raise your blood glucose levels rapidly, affecting your mood, concentration and hunger signals, and can lead to weight gain,” says Lyons. “Choose fruit – natural sugar sources that also contain vitamins, minerals and antioxidants – rather than refined sugars found in sugary cereals or pastries.” A medium-sized banana or small apple will cover you.
It’s one of the keys to keeping your appetite in check, our experts agree. Load up on filling fibre – found in wholegrain cereals, nuts, seeds, LSA or psyllium husks – first thing.
See our linked recipes below for some breakfast inspiration.