Our dietitian offers tips and recipes for great breakfasts on the go.
Skipping breakfast is like starting on a long road trip with your fuel gauge almost on empty. You're bound to run out of gas halfway through your busy morning.
Yet as many as 37% of young adults do skip breakfast, according to one survey. Often for the wrong reasons: We're too busy. We're trying to watch our weight. We don't have time to make toast, much less eggs and bacon.
The truth is: breakfast is key to health and weight management. Eating a good breakfast actually helps you eat fewer calories over the course of the day, according to recent studies in the Journal of Nutrition and in Environmental Nutrition. The right breakfast foods -- those high in fiber and protein -- keep your energy up throughout the morning and stave off hunger for hours. The wrong foods -- sugary refined cereals and white breads -- may make you eat more for lunch than normal.
Plus, breakfast serves up a good dose of key nutrients you and your children need: Calcium and potassium from milk; vitamin C, folate, and fiber from oranges or orange juice; and, fiber, folate, and iron from whole grains and fruits.
So do yourself and your children a favor. No matter how hectic your mornings, take just five minutes for a fast breakfast. To help you get started, here are my golden rules for busy breakfasts. Below the golden rules you'll find three fun recipes your family will enjoy.
5 Golden Rules for Busy Breakfasts
1. Go for 5 Grams of Fiber (or More)
Children eating the typical American diet are simply not getting enough fiber. At age 5, children should get at least 10 grams of fiber each day. By age 10, they should get 15 grams, and teenagers should get 20 grams. After age 20, you should get 25 to 35 grams a day. Choose whole grains and fruits with your breakfast to get fiber -- two slices of whole wheat bread provide 6 grams of fiber; 1 cup of fresh berries or 1 cup of raisin bran provides 5 grams or more.
2. Try Breakfast-Friendly Fruits