Breakfast has long been called the most important meal for everyone. Whether the person is an infant, child, teen, adult or senior adult after a long night of being without food, the body needs breakfast to get it going in the morning. If breakfast is so important why do so many people choose to skip breakfast rather than eating it?
The importance of eating breakfast
Choosing to skip breakfast is doing a disservice to your body. Not only will you have less energy for the day, you will also be less alert and could make you irritable. If you want to be at your best, whether going to school or work, eating a good healthy breakfast can help your day go better.
What are other reasons why eating breakfast is so important? Eating something first thing in the morning will give your blood sugar a much needed boost. Children who eat breakfast each day also do better on cognitive tests. Eating breakfast will also keep you from making bad food choices later in the day.
Some reports indicate eating breakfast may actually help you lose weight. If losing weight isn’t a goal, doing so can help you maintain an already healthy weight. Remember as essential as eating breakfast is, it is equally important to avoid consuming too many empty calories like in donuts but choose healthier foods such as hard boiled eggs, fruit and whole grains.
Since breakfast is so important, how can you ensure you have time to eat breakfast each day?
- Think about what time you have to be out of the house. Set your alarm clock early enough that you will be able to get up, get ready and still have time to eat.
- Prepare as much of your morning meal the night before as possible. If you are too rushed for time you can always grab a piece of fruit and an ounce of cheese. A peanut butter and jelly sandwich on whole wheat bread would also do in a pinch. Your body needs both carbohydrates and protein
- If you don’t have time to eat breakfast, you can also keep single-serve granola, trail mix or an energy bar in your desk, backpack or briefcase.
- Perhaps you’re not hungry first thing in the morning. Try eating dinner earlier in the day so you will be hungry when morning comes.
- When you don’t like breakfast foods, there isn’t anything requiring you to eat them. Eat a sandwich or leftovers from the previous night.
You know how important breakfast is for everyone in your family. Parents face the task of providing guidance for their children in all areas of their life. Ensuring they understand the importance of eating breakfast is one of them. Remember, you have the biggest influence on your children and what they eat, so be a good role model and they’ll be more likely to eat a good breakfast, too.
Breakfast drink ideas and tips
Sometimes you simply don’t have time to cook breakfast. That doesn’t mean you can’t have a nutritious start to your day. Consider these breakfast drink ideas and tips if you need something nutritious for your picky eater or someone who isn’t really eat breakfast. When you need something extra quick, breakfast drinks are a great option, especially if you prepare and freeze them for later use.
Smoothies are all the rage these days. Not only are they delicious but they are also nutritious. Is there a benefit to preparing a smoothie over drinking an instant breakfast shake you can purchase at the store? The biggest benefit to making a smoothie from fresh or frozen ingredients is that you know what is in your smoothie. Some of the store-bought don’t have all-natural ingredients. They may even have synthetic ingredients or nutrients.
Is it possible to gather items so smoothies are easy to make? If you have ever made a fruit smoothie, you know you need fruit, ice and some type of liquid. Of course, you can use other ingredients, too.
- Be sure to start with a clean blender.
- Cut up your fruit the night before.
- Freeze some fruit to avoid having to use ice cubes.
- Include green, leafy or other vegetables for added nutrients.
- Measure out the liquid you will use and place it in a specific container in the refrigerator.
The more you can prepare the night before, the quicker it will be to make your smoothie when you need it. And if time is at a premium, having those few extra moments can be important.
Can you make smoothies with other liquids besides cow’s milk? The liquid you use to make a smoothie is entirely up to you. Some people like to use cow’s milk, some rice milk, others coconut milk. You can also use almond milk, kefir whey, fruit juice or vegetable juice.
Have you ever had an Orange Julius in the mall? They can be made by combining the juice of three oranges, 1 egg, 1/4 cup sugar, 1 teaspoon vanilla and 6 ice cubes. Combine the ingredients at high speed in a blender until the mixture is frothy. Drink it immediately
Make a protein-packed milk shake using 1 1/4 cup milk, 1/2 cup uncooked oatmeal, 1 large ripe banana, 2 tablespoons of peanut butter, 1 teaspoon honey, 1/4 teaspoon vanilla and 3 ice cubes. Put all ingredients in the blender except for the ice cubes. Cover and then blend for one minute on medium. Add the ice cubes, cover and then blend for another minute on high.
These breakfast ideas can enable you to prepare nutritious alternatives for your family. These breakfast beverages are nutritious and taste great. Of course, if your family enjoys these choices they may not want cereal or a cooked breakfast again.
Families live fast paced lives these days. It seems there aren’t enough hours in the day to do everything and so you may find yourself skipping breakfast more often than you’d prefer. The following are some breakfast-on-the-go ideas you may want to use to encourage your family to eat breakfast each day.
- Mix up a healthy trail mix of your family’s favorite ingredients. You can use a variety of nuts, raisins or other dried fruit, carob or chocolate chips, dried coconut and seeds such as pumpkin or sunflower. Place the mixture in individual serving bags and have them ready to grab and go when needed.
- Always keep fresh fruit around the house and near the door you exit each day. Bananas, apples and oranges are the usual types of fruits you may think of. However, if your family doesn’t like these fruits, you can always slice melons or other in-season fruits and have them available in the refrigerator.
- Create breakfast biscuits the night before or on one of the days you have extra time. You can purchase frozen biscuits for a couple of dollars at most stores. Scramble some eggs and place on the prepared biscuits. Add a slice of cheese and whatever your family’s favorite breakfast meat is. There you have it! A complete breakfast ready to eat on the run.
- Make breakfast burritos using flour tortilla shells. These can be made ahead of time and frozen or you can make them a day or two ahead of time and keep them refrigerated. Scrambled eggs with sausage is what one fast food restaurant makes so why can’t you follow their lead? Use items you know your family will enjoy. Add salsa to give it some extra zip. Take them out of the refrigerator, pop them in the microwave to warm them up and you’re good to go!
- Hard boiled eggs are a good alternative if you want something that is easy to take with you. Pre-cook and peel them so all you have to do is take one out of the fridge and head out the door.
- Pre-cook or prepare as many food items as you can. Celery sticks with peanut butter, single size servings of cottage cheese or yogurt, turkey bacon slices, sausage patties are all things which can be prepared and kept in the refrigerator for a couple of days.
There really is no reason anyone should skip breakfast. While it may be true that you don’t have time to fix a traditional meal, there are so many options to choose from to ensure your family has a good start to their day. Look at these options for breakfast-on-the-go and see which ones your family will enjoy.
Cold versus hot breakfasts
Let’s face it. Sometimes you simply don’t have time to prepare a hot breakfast. On days when time is at a premium, it is easier to suggest your children eat a bowl of cereal and some fruit. You may be wondering, however, when it comes to eating breakfast is one better than the other?
If you are a parent who beats themselves up over not feeding your child a hot breakfast every day, give yourself a break. Recent studies have shown that children who eat cereal each day are actually less likely to develop obesity than those who eat a hot breakfast.
But can you trust one report when there are others that indicate cold cereal might not be the best choice. Remember that breakfast is the most important meal of the day so ensuring your child eats something – hot or cold. Studies indicate children who skip breakfast are more likely to become overweight or become obese.
Are there advantages to eating a cold breakfast?
- Some cereals contain a good source of vitamins and fiber. You will want to read the labels to ensure your child doesn’t get too much sugar along with including fiber and whole grains.
- Whole grain cereals, even those with higher sugar levels, have less fat than a ‘traditional’ hot breakfast of bacon and eggs.
- Some reports suggest that eating whole grain cereals several days a week can help you lose weight as well as possibly reduce your risk of diabetes and heart disease.
- There are many choices of cereal so you will want to be careful with which ones you purchase for your family.
Are there advantages to eating a hot breakfast?
- Hot breakfasts are a great choice on cold days. They help warm the body as well as provide the energy needed to get through the morning.
- Most hot foods you would prepare for breakfast will have limited amounts of sugar or at least give you the option of controlling how much sugar is consumed.
- Hot cereals such as oatmeal also give you the option of adding other healthy ingredients you might not get in cold cereals.
No one denies the importance of eating breakfast – for children, teens and adults. While there is still debate as to whether cold or hot breakfasts are better, the choice to serve breakfast is not in question. Consider the advantages of each and then make the best decision for your family.
Alternatives breakfast ideas for picky eaters
If you listen to doctors and nutritionists, breakfast is the most important meal of the day. Some people simply do not like breakfast foods. You may have to become adventurous and find alternatives for picky eaters.
- Make a loaf or two of banana bread. There aren’t very many people who will turn down a slice or two of banana bread. Add your favorite nut to give your loaves more nutritional value.
- Green smoothies may not look very appealing but they can be delicious. Some ingredients you can put in a green smoothie are pineapple, banana, apples, oranges, dates, pitted cherries, strawberries, almonds, baby spinach or kale. The ingredients you choose are entirely up to you.
- Peanut butter and jelly sandwich. Most picky children will eat a peanut butter and jelly sandwich whenever they are offered food. While a PB&J might not be your choice for a healthy breakfast, it also doesn’t have to be so bad. Offer a whole wheat rather than white bread. Try to find a peanut butter brand without high fructose corn syrup or choose almond or cashew butter. Use fruit-only jelly instead of the high-sugar varieties.
- Consider making an omelet rather than scrambled eggs. Add sautéed vegetables (onions, green pepper and mushrooms) along with plenty of your child’s favorite cheese.
- Bagels are something a lot of families don’t eat. If you haven’t tried bagels for breakfast, you’re in for a treat. Purchase a tub of whipped cream cheese and add your child’s favorite fruit to make it more appealing to your child. You can also use peanut butter and jelly, a variety of salads or anything else your child will eat.
- Cheese and fruit is also a good option for picky eaters. Chances are they like at least one type of cheese which will provide a good source of protein. Cut up apples and put them on a plate. Offer them fresh strawberries or grapes. It might not be a traditional breakfast but it will at least get them eating.
- Offer your picky child a variety of foods. Nuts, avocado slices, apples, cheese, hard boiled eggs or cereal they like to snack on. Think about things they DO like to eat and let your child eat that for breakfast to ensure they eat something.
As a parent you want your child to be healthy and happy. If they are a picky eater you may be concerned that they’re not getting the nutrients they need. If you offer them things they do like, no matter if they are traditional breakfast items or not, you can be sure they are eating until this picky stage passes.