Friday, February 26, 2010

Let's Talk Turkey.... Bacon, that is!

So, we all know that breakfast is the most important meal of the day. But do you know WHY?

Normally, when I find something worth sharing - I will post a link. However, in this case I think this is important enough to post the actual article. The link to the website is here.

Don’t Skip Breakfast to Cut Calories

When you’re trying to lose weight, cutting out breakfast may be tempting. You figure you’re saving yourself some calories and you get a couple extra minutes to snooze. But research has consistently shown that the people who successfully lose weight are the ones that wake up and eat! Furthermore, people who eat breakfast regularly have better vitamin and mineral status and eat fewer calories from fat. So it seems that breakfast really is the most important meal of the day.

Eat Early, Weigh Less Later

Why does eating breakfast help people lose weight? It defies common sense that eating all those calories in the morning instead of simply skipping them would help.

Many studies, in both adults and children, have shown that breakfast eaters tend to weigh less than breakfast skippers.

Why? One theory suggests that eating a healthy breakfast can reduce hunger throughout the day and help people make better food choices at other meals. While it might seem as though you could save calories by skipping breakfast, this is not an effective strategy. Typically, hunger gets the best of people who skip breakfast, and they eat more at lunch and throughout the day.

Another theory behind the breakfast–weight control link implies that eating breakfast is part of a healthy lifestyle that includes making wise food choices and balancing calories with exercise. For example, consider the successful weight losers followed by the National Weight Control Registry, all of whom have lost at least 30 pounds and kept it off for at least one year. Some 80% of the people in the Registry regularly eat breakfast (and also follow a calorie-controlled, low-fat diet).

It’s worth noting that most studies linking breakfast to weight control looked at a healthy breakfast containing protein and/or whole grains—not meals loaded with fat and calories.

Eating breakfast also gives you energy to do more physical activity and be more productive in everything you do, which is also vital to weight control. So make the effort to get up in the morning and fix yourself a healthy meal.

Maintaining Your Diet

Before you get too excited and go out for a Denny’s™ Grand Slam Breakfast, keep in mind that your breakfast should consist of healthy items that are in line with your current dietary weight-loss goals. Members of the National Weight Control Registry report eating cereal and fruit for breakfast. While these are certainly healthy options, eggs have also been shown to offer several benefits.

Eggs have a greater satiety value than cereal and white bread. This means that they are more satisfying in giving you that feeling of fullness, while you may actually be eating less. One of the reasons for this is that eggs are high in protein, which is known to increase satiety. Proteins also have a higher thermic effect, meaning that it takes more calories to digest them. Studies have compared an egg breakfast to a bagel breakfast of the same caloric value and weight. Researchers at Louisiana State University’s Pennington Biomedical Research Center discovered that people who ate the eggs for breakfast ate less at lunch and less throughout the rest of the day compared to people who ate the bagels, even though they had the same amount of calories for breakfast.

In the past, eggs have had a bad rap because of their high cholesterol content. However, eggs today have lower cholesterol counts than in the past due to the healthier feeds given to chickens. Additionally, research has shown that moderate egg consumption of about 1 per day does not increase the risk of coronary heart disease in healthy individuals. If the cholesterol count is a concern, then egg whites, which are free of cholesterol yet rich in protein, are a good alternative. Eggs are also a good source of essential nutrients riboflavin, vitamin B12, phosphorus, selenium and protein.

If you aren’t too keen on eggs, try low-fat or non-fat dairy products like yogurt, which are also high in protein. High-fiber complex carbohydrates like whole-grain breads and cereals will keep you satisfied. Fiber also increases that sensation of fullness. Overall, whether you choose eggs, cereal or fruit, your breakfast should fall in line with your dietary weight-loss goals. Choose foods that fit your lifestyle and that you will enjoy.


Here's the deal - the bottom line is its all about blood sugar. Our blood sugar levels are incredibly important when it comes to our energy levels and helping to support our active lifestyles, workouts and overall metabolism.

Think about it - My last meal of the day is at 7:30 pm. I get up at 8am, rush out the front door to work and don't eat again until noon - that's a SIXTEEN hour fast! By that point, my body is running on fumes and am famished. I have no energy because my body wants to conserve all of the energy (or FAT people!) it has. So, by the time I eat - I eat anything and everything in sight - ANOTHER blood sugar problem. All of the sugars and refined carbs in my lunch causes my system to go on overload - trying to figure out what to do with all of the crap I just gave it (cause you know, being so flipping hungry, I'm not going to run for the most healthy option). My blood sugar goes nuts. But then plummets a few hours later - because I didn't eat healthy options ie whole grains and complex carbs. Then by the time I get home, I'm famished again - and pig out on crap for dinner. I then go to bed and start the cycle over again the next day.

Or let's look at this scenario instead. My last meal of the day is at 7:30. I get up the next morning at 6:30, eat a breakfast, drink some water, work out, shower, dress and then leave for work. I then eat a snack, ie fruit, granola bar etc at 10 ish - then go for lunch at noon. Even at this point you can see a total difference. My body is going to see fuel first thing in the day. I'll be adding wood to the fire of my metabolism first thing - and will continue to add logs through out the day. Another snack at 3 then home and dinner at 7:30. My body and metabolism are fueled through out the day - all starting with breakfast. My blood sugar stays consistent and my body is not confused and therefore can use the energy it was given to burn this big ol arse of mine - or FAT.

Now those of you that work outside of the home, are not morning people or just don't think you have the time to eat breakfast.

Here's the deal - MAKE TIME. Period. If you want to be healthy and or loose weight - you will do what needs to be done. Do you want to or don't you? Something simple as breakfast can make or break your entire day. Thirty minutes less sleep wont kill you.

Need something quick to throw together? Here's what I eat almost everyday for breakfast - yogurt, granola and fruit.

Its full of protein, complex carbs, antioxidants, tastes good and is just plain pretty to look at. This bowl was 405 calories, 54 carbs, 16 grams of fat and 10 grams of protein. This actually was a little high for me on the calorie end but I was trying a new yogurt. I didn't really care for it and will take my Greek Gods Honey Greek Yogurt, thanks - its lower in calories, higher protein and tastes better. I also LOVE Bear Naturals granola. Yummy goodness.

Something else to think of --- make breakfast ahead of time. Here's a breakfast bake I made for dinner last week:

I took a bag of thawed frozen hash browns and dumped them into a 9 by 11 glass baking dish. In a bowl, I scrambled 8 eggs with a cup of milk then poured the mix over the hash browns. Sixteen pieces of cooked, crumbled turkey bacon were layered over the top. Then I spread an entire bag of low fat cheddar cheese on the top. I threw it in the oven for 30 minutes, then cut it into eight servings. Each serving is 335 calories, 19 carbs, 31 grams of fat and 23 grams of protein. You make this, cut it into servings and put each serving in a ziplock - all you have to do is pull out a bag, throw it in the microwave for a minute or two, then eat it in the car on the way to work. Good to go!!

You've been told why breakfast is good and you've been given not one but two great ideas. So, now you don't have any more excuses - eat your breakfast!!


Keelie said...

I have actually been trying to reverse my meal mentality--eating most of my calories at breakfast, and least at dinner. We'll see if it pays off on the scale...

Great article!

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Kelly said...

YUMMY! I'm going to be making that breakfast item there at the end! I have been trying soooo hard to eat a bigger breakfast than dinner. My favorite breakfast is oatmeal and a low fat wheat mini bagel.

Great post! thanks!

linds said...

Keelie - that's a good idea. We as a society are so used to eating our biggest meal as dinner. I think its because its when the family is together and can share each others company. At least thats how it works in my house. I try to keep between 3 and 4 hundred calories for breakfast lunch and dinner - and four 100 calorie snacks through out the day - two between breakfast and lunch - one between lunch and dinner and one after dinner. So, most of my calories come earlier in the day too. Let us know how that works for you!

Kelly - yea, that bake was really good. It would be good on the go cause it was firm, so you could wrap it in a paper towel and head out the door. I ate it with peppers but I bet it would be good with sour cream too. Yum!

linds said...

I should clarify - I eat 300 - 400 calories for EACH - breakfast, lunch and dinner. Then four 100 calorie snacks. I like to stay around 1300 total.