Breakfast is the first meal of the day and because of this it is also the most important. When you wake up, your body has been fasting for 6-8 hours and needs all sorts of nutrients to get moving. If you’re trying to lose weight, you need to balance your body’s needs for energy with your need to reduce calories.
Losing weight means restricting calories. Because of this some traditional breakfast foods might be off limits. Having an egg biscuit with cheese and bacon isn’t a good idea. Biscuits alone can be 400 calories while each slice of cheese is around 100. Six or seven hundred calories for one little biscuit sandwich might add too many calories to your day.
There are plenty of healthy options to choose from that can help you lose weight. For a perfect breakfast, you want a food that is high in vitamins and minerals, low in calories and will keep you full for a long period of time. You also want to get a steady supply of energy.
Cereal, oatmeal and fruit all fit this description. They are all high in complex carbohydrates, vitamins, minerals and relatively low in calories. The complex carbs will keep you satisfied while providing you with energy for a long time. You can also add drinks such as fruit juice, coffee or tea (sugar free) to your breakfast lineup.
If you’re in a hurry, you can try different breakfast bars. Make sure you pick one that is low in sugar (not carbohydrates) and in fat. You should also make sure that it is high in vitamins and minerals.
If you prefer the more traditional breakfast, there are substitutes for the items you love that are healthier. Replace biscuits with english muffins. They are lower in calories, fat and if you get ones that are made with whole wheat flour, they can be high in nutrients.
Use turkey products instead of pork ones. Each slice of turkey bacon has around 40 calories compared with 130 for the pork version.
If you like toast with butter, replace white bread with the whole wheat kind and ditch the butter for a spread made from vegetable oil instead of animal fat. While vegetable spreads are just as high in calories as butter, they are high in good fats while low in bad ones.
Eggs are not horrible for your health. They have large amounts of high quality protein. The trouble is that if you eat a lot of yolks, the saturated fat and cholesterol start to add up. There are egg substitutes you can use that are lower in fat and cholesterol. You can also eat 1 yolk for every 2 or 3 egg whites (but wasting food isn’t a good idea). There are also new types of eggs that are naturally lower in saturated fats. Check the nutrition labels to find them.
The Bottom Line
While losing weight is about reducing calories, reducing calories is not about skipping breakfast. Studies have shown that skipping the most important meal will lead you to eat more throughout the day which won’t help you in your ultimate goal. Breakfast also helps you stay energized and focused which will let you perform your best at any activity – work or exercise.