Breakfast has long been touted as the most important meal of the day, and for good reason. Studies show that breakfast consumption may lower the risk of weight gain, increase cognitive functioning, and make you less likely to reach for unhealthy food throughout the entire day.
Benefits of breakfast:
- Boosts metabolism: Did you know by the time you wake up in the morning, your body is in a fasting state? Hence the term "breakfast" literally means "to break the fast". Fasting slows bodily functioning and processes, including your metabolism. When you have a balanced morning meal, you actually start the day off by increasing your metabolism, setting your body up for burning energy more efficiently throughout the day. Burn more calories throughout the day, just by eating breakfast? Count me in.
- Sustains energy throughout the day: Giving your body what it needs in the morning energizes \ you all day long. Whether you down a pastry with coffee or skip breakfast and wait to eat until lunch, both of these scenarios affect food choices later. The pastry will spike blood sugar and insulin, leaving you hungry again mid-morning. Skipping breakfast makes you hangry by lunchtime, which leads us to justify a heavier lunch because "I didn't eat anything this morning".
- Prevents overeating: Getting enough nourishment on the front end of your day will help prevent those ravenous munchies later on. Instead of eating lightly for breakfast then having to overcompensate at lunch and dinner, eat a substantial meal for breakfast that includes complex carbs, protein, and healthy fats (ex: peanut butter toast on whole grain bread + 1/2 banana or avocado toast on grainy bread + scrambled egg).
It's easy to make a big batch of overnight oats on Sunday to enjoy the entire week — in the morning, simply put in a mason jar, add your toppings, and you're off. Another perk: this basic recipe is adaptable, so the flavor options are limitless. Try it with unsweetened coconut milk, adding mango and kiwi for a tropical twist, or stir a spoonful of cacao powder into the oats and add banana, cinnamon, and almonds for a chocolate-y treat. You could also swap the greek yogurt for pumpkin puree, fall weather not required.
1/4 cup oats
1/3 cup milk
1/4 cup Greek yogurt
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
2 teaspoons chia seeds or ground flax
1 teaspoon honey
- Stir ingredients together and place in fridge overnight.
- In the morning, top with fresh fruit, nuts & seeds, and/or a spoonful of nut butter for added protein. Enjoy!
OVER TO YOU