We’ve always known the importance of a good breakfast. And in 2008, we discovered the benefits of a big breakfast. But do you consider macronutrients when making your morning meal? You should, because prioritizing protein in your breakfast could help you loose weight.
If you’re like most Americans, you don’t consume enough protein in the morning. In fact, it generally represents only 15 percent of our daily protein intake. But a high-protein breakfast goes a long way. It will keep you feeling fuller longer and maintain your level of energy throughout the morning. It will also make you less prone to overeating at lunch.
Who knows how and why breakfast candy (that’s you cereal) became such a household staple, but now’s time to ditch those high-carb, low-fat breakfasts. Dr. Jonny Bowden, author of the 150 Healthiest Foods on Earth, recommends at least one-third of your breakfast come from a lean protein source, with the rest from healthy fats and fibrous carbohydrates.
Having a hard time breaking-up with your Kashi Oat Flakes & Wild Blueberry Clusters cereal? Or maybe you’re a vegetarian. Whatever the case, here are some healthy, protein-packed breakfast ideas:
- Hard boiled eggs. For convenience, make a dozen at a time, store in the refrigerator, and crack one or two open for breakfast. Have eggs with an apple and an ounce of whole, raw almonds.
- Greek-strained yogurt. Make sure to get plain, and opt for 2% or fat-free if you’re counting calories. Goat or sheep’s milk yogurt works too. Add a tablespoon of walnut pieces and some frozen cherries–and voila!
- Peanut butter and banana sandwich. Use sprouted grain bread, such as Ezekiel, and top with a tablespoon of natural, unsweetened nut butter (peanut, almond or cashew) and a small sliced banana.
- Whey protein shake. Blend together ½ cup of old fashioned oats, 1 cup of water, 1 tablespoon of nut butter and one scoop of chocolate protein powder. This is a perfect breakfast on the go.
- Hot protein oatmeal. Add ¾ cups of pasteurized egg whites to ½ cup of oatmeal and heat in microwave until warm, but don’t let the egg white gel (about 45 seconds). Add 2 tablespoon of canned pumpkin, 1 tablespoon walnut pieces, and sprinkle with cinnamon and nutmeg to taste.You can also add ground flax seed and wheat germ to oatmeal, shakes and yogurts.
And don’t be afraid to experiment! There’s nothing wrong with having fish for breakfast (think sardines on sprouted bread) and vegetables as sides (asparagus with poached eggs, canned pumpkin in oatmeal). A basic Japanese breakfast, for example, consists of steamed rice, miso (soy bean paste) soup, and grilled fish.
Why does this matter to you? Because people who eat a balanced breakfast every day are also the ones who are successful in long-term weight loss maintenance. But remember: a balanced breakfast should include protein, fat, and fiber, a combination that slows digestion and stomach emptying. Prioritizing protein, meanwhile, will make you feel full for longer than a carb-packed breakfast will.