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Wake-up Call

The world seems just a little brighter at the start of the day with a great breakfast. But before you pancake on those pounds, consider a few healthier options.

Article
Ryann Gordon
Photos
Courtesy
Posted
July 29, 2017

How do your eating patterns play out throughout the day? Do you wait until late afternoon to finally get some food on your belly or do you snack throughout your work shift? Do you eat a huge lunch or dinner? Do you eat breakfast at all? Mom always said, breakfast is the most important part of the day. And, it’s about time we started listening to her.

Breakfast can set the tone for the rest of your day.

If you eat a heavy, unhealthy breakfast, then you’re probably going to be craving something fatty and hearty for lunch and consequently dinner as well. This is why eating a healthy, filling breakfast is quite possibly one of the most important moves we can make before heading into a full afternoon and week.

Lucky for us, breakfast is one of the easiest meals to stay within a diet parameters with fiber-rich grains like oatmeal and toast that’ll fill your belly and fuel you for hours as well as fruits and yogurt full of antioxidants and probiotics. If you’re craving something fatty, this is your time to squeeze in those high-protein dishes of eggs, bacon, sausage, ham — the works.

So, throw out that Starbucks gift card and pack your breakfast full of healthy fats, sweet vitamins and filling fibers that’ll boost your metabolism and get you ready to take on the rest of your day.

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Wake up wired
Most of us begin our day with a large cup of coffee or green tea. Both are rich in antioxidants and caffeine that will wake you up and provide that boost to get to your next step. Try sweetening your tea with honey over sugar though; and swap the creamer in your coffee for something lower in fat, like almond milk, vanilla extract and cinnamon.

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Dose of healthy
Get your full, daily dose of vitamins taken care of from the start of the day. Begin with a glass of vitamin D-rich orange juice, bananas or grapefruit packed with potassium and vitamin C, which you can also get from a bowl full of sweet berries. Try juicing kale or carrots into your morning smoothie or throw some spinach and tomatoes in a quiche, frittata or breakfast taco.

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Probo-prevention
Breakfast is a great time to add some preventative substances into your diet. Probiotics are essential for a woman’s diet; so, throw some Greek yogurt in a bowl of berries, granola and maybe some peanut butter for a homemade acai bowl you’ll be dreaming of until noon. If you don’t have time for this, try a glass of cranberry juice on your way out the door to give you that extra healing boost.

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Fiber fix
The best time of the day to treat yourself to those carbs you went to bed dreaming about is early in the day. Oatmeal, bran cereal and whole wheat toast will give you that fix. Throw some chia or flaxseed into your oatmeal or smoothie for an option that’s lower in carbs and higher in other vitamins and supplements.

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Muscle-building magic
High-quality protein is one of the most important parts of a good breakfast. Although bacon and ham are some of our favorites, dishes such as eggs, turkey bacon, cottage cheese, nuts or low-fat milk are probably a better option for your initial meal of the day. And, if you’re a peanut butter lover and can’t seem to drop the habit — get that fix taken care of early on in the day, when your body has time to digest and burn off that fat content.

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Phat and happy
Despite common belief, fats are actually essential to our diet. This doesn’t mean that you need to load up on sugar-packed cereal, butter, pastries or other sources of trans fat in the morning. Do, however, knock out those healthy fats as early in the day as possible. Slap some peanut or almond butter on morning toast for a healthier topping; go for unsweetened yogurt and cereal; and, let’s just say, drop the whole milk, muffins, pancakes, bagels and waffles altogether.