Breakfast is one of the most, if not the most, important meals of the day. After a night of fasting, the first meal of the day should offer us energy and refreshment to carry on until lunchtime or longer.
So, it is crucial we take breakfast and choose the right nutrients for it. There are certain foods which, if added to breakfast, can offer additional benefits.
Want to boost your energy for the rest of the day? Just add eggs to the breakfast. One egg will provide a mix of 06 grams of proteins, 05 grams of healthy fat and 75 calories. There is a misperception that the fat it contains is harmful. But a study by researchers at the University of Surrey in the UK showed that this fat has no major impact on our total body cholesterol.
Another study by the University of Connecticut, USA, revealed if people at risk of type 2 diabetes regularly eat whole eggs and lower carb intake, this can have a number of health benefits, including reducing weight and blood cholesterol.
Nuts and nut butter
Nuts offer a great source of proteins we need to start the day. They also provide important minerals like potassium and magnesium, as well as antioxidants.
New England Journal of Medicine published the results of a 30-year-long study in 2013, which demonstrated that mortality risk is reduced by 20 per cent for people consuming nuts seven or more times every week. We can also add nut butter, e.g. peanut butter, almond butter etc., if you are not allergic to any.
Honey is a great addition to breakfast, especially for growing children, athletes and older adults. Honey helps to keep our immune system up and running. It also improves brain function. It is also a great complement to dairy products and juices. Another benefit is that honey can help to lower our total cholesterol. For kids, it can act as a natural substitute for sugar and provide the sweetness they crave in breakfast.
This is something that is often added to the breakfast in the subcontinent. Why? First and foremost, it improves our bowel functions and alleviates constipation. But the benefit does not stop there. Isabgul can clean our gastrointestinal tract of unwanted toxins, acts as a digestive stimulant and may offer relief from ulcers and acidity.
Isabgol can be beneficial for patients with Diabetes as well. To get the benefits, 1-2 teaspoons of the powder can be added to a glass of water and taken before the meal.
Bananas and Papayas
They should be part of a healthy breakfast. Bananas provide dietary fibres which support digestive health. They contain potassium, too, an important mineral for our body. Papayas also contain carotenoids, an antioxidant, fibres, and vitamins C and A.
Vitamin C can help absorb non-heme iron, which is the type of iron found in plant-based foods. It can also help support your immune system.
Avocados are a great source of many important elements, including vitamins B, C, K, E, folic acid and potassium. It may not be tasty food, but it certainly offers many benefits. So add it to an omelette or to a toast to increase palatability.
Coffee is now a popular breakfast choice for many. Coffee contains antioxidants; thus, it is good to fight inflammation. It can also help lower the risk of type 2 diabetes, according to a review by American Diabetes Association.
Tea is also a good source of antioxidants. Green tea is the best in this context. A study by researchers from Maastricht University, The Netherlands (2016) showed that green tea can promote weight loss and decrease fat.
Adding these foods to breakfast can make the day's first meal quite healthy and keep us fresh and energetic all day.