So what does a healthy breakfast look like?
A healthy breakfast should consist of a variety of foods including complex carbs, lean proteins, and good fats such as olive oil or a sprinkle of almonds on your yogurt, or a few slices of avocado on your breakfast burrito. Choose one item from at least three of the following four food groups:
- Dairy: Non- or low-fat cheese, milk, yogurt, cottage cheese or ricotta
- Fruits and vegetables: Fresh whole fruits and vegetables (Yes, veggies at breakfast—think omelettes or breakfast wraps!)
- Grains: Whole-grain rolls, bagels, bread, tortillas, cereals or muffins
- Protein: Eggs, lean turkey or chicken, smoked salmon
- Fat: Olive oil, nuts, seeds, avocado
No time? No excuse.
Here are some easy portable ideas:
- Bran muffin and vanilla yogurt
- Whole grain pita sandwich with one to two slices of lowfat cheese and an apple
- Breakfast wrap (whole grain tortilla with scrambled egg, sprinkle of cheese and salsa)
- Trail mix and 8 ounces of milk
- Yogurt and granola
- Multigrain bagel with a dab of cream cheese and a couple slices of smoked salmon
- Smoothie made with high protein Greek-style yogurt
- Peanut butter and jam sandwich on whole grain bread
When choosing bread, check out the label first. If the label says “enriched” it probably contains processed white wheat flour, meaning it’s low in fiber and nutrition. Choose breads with at least three grams of fiber per serving. The first ingredient listed should be “whole” wheat or “whole grain.
Most packaged breakfast cereals are highly processed and loaded with added sugar. Choose packaged cereals with less than five grams of sugar and at least five grams of fiber per serving.