Rosemary Nardone, CHHP, RM
Nutritional Health Counselor
given morning, one in five Americans skip breakfast. Those who
do eat mostly grab what amounts to sugary muffin or scones that
pack on pounds. We think we have the rest of the day to eat
right, so whatís the harm?
after study shows that people who eat a healthy breakfast based
on whole foods rich in nutrients and fiber, moderate protein and
good fats are more energetic and mentally alert than those who
eat poorly or not at all. They are also less likely to get
diabetes or suffer high blood pressure, strokes and heart
attacks. For those trying to keep off the extra pounds,
breakfast is essential.
simply physiology. Our bodies need to recharge to function
properly. It gets its fuel known as glucose by breaking down
carbohydrates in our food, then entering the bloodstream,
circulating and providing cells with energy. It only stands to
reason after youíve fasted for more than eight hours overnight,
eating would be important. Blood sugar needs to be at a certain
level, but if you donít eat breakfast your body stays stuck in
low energy state. This triggers brain-hunger and you seek out
number one, donít skip breakfast; rule number two, make your
food choices count. When the body turns carbs into glucose, it
produces insulin which channels glucose into the cells.
Problems arise when all of this happens too quickly such as when
you eat processed foods and refined carbs like coffee cake,
bagels, donuts. Your body then rapidly causes blood sugar to
spike due to insulin surge, taking your energy down with it.
Three hours later, you get the urge to eat again because blood
sugar is low, grab the easiest thing like a cookie, the whole
process starts again. This cycle repeated over and over for
years paves the way to create metabolic syndrome, precursor to
diabetes, heart disease, immune disorder, obesity and cancer.
contrast, carbs found in whole grains, legumes, fruit,
vegetables takes longer to digest controlling blood sugar so you
donít experience the crash thus sustaining energy and will
power. When choosing cereals, look for low sugar, high protein,
high fiber, whole grain. Most supermarket cereals contain corn
syrup, high sodium and white flours which are counterproductive
to nutritional health.
Meanwhile, fiber is the focus of several studies linking
breakfast consumption to protection from heart problems. How?
By lowering cholesterol and blood pressure. It is important we
get 25 grams of fiber daily. Most of us only get l5, so eating
the right cereal at breakfast is our best chance of getting this
in your diet. Bowl of high fiber cereal sprinkled with berries
gives us at least 12 grams of fiber for starters.
power is the next step. Healthy carbs may be core for healthy
breakfast, but we need to balance the meal out with foods rich
in Protein which increases satiety by slowing down the rate
which food moves from your stomach to intestines. In addition,
studies show that protein suppresses and appetite inducing
hormone called Ghfelin. Approximately 10 grams of protein is
enough to balance out your meal. You can get that by a cup of
low fat yogurt, 1/3 cp almonds or an egg. As far as healthy
fats, I recommend choosing unsaturated fats including nuts,
flaxseeds, salmon. Eggs have gotten a bad rap, but as a protein
source they are considered ďgold standardĒ Ė they contain a
perfect balance of amino acids and choline.
you donít have time to eat breakfast Ė I say break the rules and
remember you donít have to eat the minute you get out of bed,
wait an hour or two after sleeping. Not necessary to eat your
whole meal at once, instead nibble throughout the morning.
Also, donít limit yourself to traditional oatmeal and eggs,
turkey sandwich on whole grain bread with sliced tomato would
fill nutritional requirements.
Get back on track, start enjoying breakfast!