Last updated on April 21st, 2023 at 11:30 AM
Breakfast is often regarded as the most important meal of the day because it replenishes your body with energy and nutrients following a night of sleep.
As the name suggests, breakfast is when you break your overnight fast and provide your body with the food to get you through till your next meal.
With this I spoke with the expert sports nutrition at Bulk.com have investigated five foods you can easily incorporate into your breakfast. These foods supply your body with the nutrients it needs, can help tackle cravings and snacking, and can get you through your day.
These hacks are affordable and make your breakfast more exciting and nutrient dense.
1. Protein Shakes
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Protein is essential for any diet or lifestyle, especially for those who work out. Protein is required to help build and repair muscles in the body and help with other vital functions.
We must consume the correct amount of protein our body needs for the nutritional benefits and to keep us satiated.
The most obvious benefit of having a protein shake for breakfast is the sheer ease and convenience of preparing and consuming. It also offers a great head start to your day, keeping you full and helping you achieve your overall protein intake for the day.
A great hack to incorporate more protein into your diet would be by adding protein powder to your breakfast items, ultimately boosting their nutritional value.
For example, a scoop added to pancakes or muffin batters can increase the protein intake without adding additional ingredients.
Check out this quick video for a protein bar recipe that serves as a great on-the-go breakfast snack: Peanut Butter Protein Bars
Fish may be unusual for breakfast; however, it is the norm in many cultures and helps provide a well-balanced diet.
Due to the protein found in fish, introducing some to your breakfast routine can help keep you fuller for longer and tackle sugar cravings later in the morning, ultimately preventing snacking.
Fish contains two essential fatty acids, EPA and DHA, which help lower the risk of heart disease. They also provide your daily dose of Vitamin D and antioxidants.
Grilled fish, such as salmon, would be great to incorporate into your breakfast and can help you learn about different cultures around the world. If cooked fish is too daunting, smoked salmon is great to add over wholemeal toast and is packed with nutrients, vitamins, and omega-3 fatty acids.
3. Nuts, Nut Butters & Seeds
Numerous studies have gone into the benefits of eating nuts, some highlighting how they can improve heart and brain health.
Nuts have many nutritional benefits, including antioxidants, potassium, magnesium, and heart-healthy monounsaturated fats. They also contain high amounts of fibre, especially almonds and hazelnuts. Nut Butters are a great way to add protein to your breakfasts and go perfectly over oats.
Some nuts are high in calories, making them perfect for bulking.
Seeds are another great source of protein and healthy fats; however, seeds are also high in calories, like nuts. Sunflower seeds, Chia seeds, and Flaxseeds are a great addition to your porridge or smoothies, providing a source of Omega-3.
You can purchase blends of nuts and seeds in supermarkets which can be sprinkled onto your cereals, oatmeal or even baked goods such as flapjacks or muffins.
This is an easy way to add more nutrients, especially if you are feeding young children, as some of these blends have no overpowering flavour or texture.
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Oats are a breakfast staple, especially since they release energy slowly and keep you satiated. They are full of vitamins, minerals and soluble fibre, which is especially great for those with diabetes as they can help lower glucose and cholesterol levels.
They are the perfect all-rounder because they are gluten-free and can be eaten sweet or savoury.
They also can be prepared in advance, giving you some extra time in the morning. Overnight oats are popular as they require no cooking and can be made up to five days in advance.
Fresh or dried fruit is a great way to add natural sweetness to your oats and other nutrients, such as antioxidants. Nuts and seeds can also be added, providing a textural change, fibre and Omega-3’s.
Protein powder can also be added to increase your protein intake. Check out this great recipe for baked oats with added protein: Protein Baked Oats
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Yoghurt is a great way to start your day, considering it has numerous health benefits and is a versatile ingredient. It can be eaten with oats, granola, fruits, or smoothies.
It may be a common ingredient used in breakfast items; however, it is affordable and can easily be made to be more exciting.
Yoghurt is also an excellent source of protein, therefore, keeps you feeling full. Protein is essential if you are trying to maintain or lose weight. A breakfast that keeps you full can prevent you from snacking during the day.
Yoghurt is also essential for your digestive health, containing live probiotic cultures that support gut health and microbiome. This can help mitigate digestive disorders and prevent constipation.
Most recipes with yoghurt can be prepared the night before, providing an easy and convenient way to incorporate it into your breakfast. Check out this quick video on the perfect yoghurt bowl: Breakfast Yoghurt Bowl
A spokesperson from Bulk.com added, “For those looking to keep a healthy diet and maintain or lose weight, it is vital not to skip breakfast. High protein in your first meal of the day can help keep you full, prevent snacking, and reduce the risk of type-2 diabetes.”
Understandably, the morning run before school or work can be stressful, and cereal and toast are the go-tos. However, most breakfast dishes can be prepared the night before, saving time.
Your breakfast routine may be monotonous, and changing what you eat in the morning can take time and effort.
Including more nutrient-dense foods has many health benefits and can get you through that morning slump, often caused by high amounts of processed or sugary foods in the morning.