For last week’s Nutrition Challenge, you started dividing your calories into five meals a day (this is key to achieving your ideal shape). This week we’ll be taking a closer look at the first and most important of those five meals – breakfast – and making it amazing!
According to a study released by Virginia Commonwealth University, breakfast is the most important meal of the day for weight loss. In fact, they found that those who consumed a large breakfast (half their daily intake of calories) lost FIVE TIMES as much weight as those who skipped breakfast.
Isn’t it time to rethink that whole “starve myself so I can eat more later” concept?
Now, you don’t need to consume half your calories at the crack of dawn. I’d rather you spread them out more evenly across your five meals. But this study drives home the fact that eating a meal is ALWAYS better than skipping a meal when it comes to shedding pounds. It’s all about appetite control and fueling your energy and willpower.
So what should you put on that golden breakfast platter? You want a good balance of carbs, protein and fats. Think 40/30/30: 40% or almost half of the meal should be carbs, 30% of the meal should be proteins and 30% should be healthy fats.
Here are some ideas:
Good breakfast carbs: Oatmeal, cream of wheat, cream of rice, whole-wheat tortillas, fruit, honey, sprouted grain/whole wheat bread, low sugar cereals
Good breakfast proteins: Eggs, egg whites, cottage cheese, Greek yogurt, lean ham, turkey sausage/bacon, whey isolate
Good breakfast fats: Full eggs (the yolk is a great fat source), avocado on eggs, cheese in a breakfast sandwich or burrito, peanut butter on fruit, nuts in oatmeal
Pressed for time? An IdealShake is the fastest breakfast there is. Add some extra ingredients — like fruit, peanut butter and a little Greek yogurt — to make a yummy, filling smoothie with the perfect blend of protein, carbs and fats!
Your Challenge for This Week
Eat a balanced breakfast of carbs, protein and fat each day. It doesn’t have to be right when you get up in the morning. Breakfast is defined as the first meal of the day. In that respect, you can’t really ‘skip’ breakfast so much as delay when it happens. Don’t forget to continue the five meals a day habit you started working on last week.
Track Your Results
For many of us, work and school greatly dictate our eating schedules, but if you want to achieve your ideal shape, it’s worth making time for breakfast.
See if eating a balanced breakfast each day helps you…
- Control hunger and cravings. At 10 or 11am, are you hunting for snacks in your coworker’s desk, or tempted to joint them for fast food? Or do you feel calm and in control of your food choices?
- Have more energy. A study by the University of Kansas Medical Center shows that protein-rich breakfasts support increased physical activity and brain function. Are you taking the stairs to work? Do you feel more focused and alert?
- Burn more fat. At the end of week #2, are you seeing weight loss or improved muscle tone?
When you have completed this challenge, post in the comments or over on the Facebook page and tell us your favorite breakfast you had this week!
P.S. Nutrition is only part of the puzzle. Sign up for the full challenge and get short, ultra-effective workouts delivered straight to your email each week! You can even enter the contest for a chance to win a free trip!