“Eat your breakfast. It’s the most important meal of the day!” Why are parents always saying that?
Well, imagine you’re a car. After a long night of sleeping, your fuel tank is empty. Breakfast is the fuel that gets you going so you can hit the road.
WHAT to EAT?
Any breakfast is better than no breakfast, but don’t eat doughnuts or pastries all the time. They’re high in calories, sugar and fat and don’t contain the nutrients a kid really needs. Plus, a doughnut for breakfast, won’t keep you feeling full for long.
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Just like with other meals, try to eat a variety of foods, including:
• grains (breads and cereals)
• protein (meats, beans and nuts)
• fruits and vegetables
• milk, cheese and yogurt
Here are some breakfast ideas. First, the traditional ones:
• French toast, waffles or pancakes (try wheat or whole-grain varieties)
• cold or hot cereal and milk
• whole-grain toast, bagel or English muffin with cheese
• yogurt with fruit or nuts• fruit smoothie
And now some weird ones:
• fruit and cream cheese sandwich (use strawberries or other fresh fruit)
• sandwich (grilled cheese, peanut butter and jelly, or another favorite)
• banana dog (peanut butter, a banana and raisins in a long whole-grain bun)
• breakfast taco (shredded cheese on a tortilla, folded in half and microwaved; top with salsa)
Some kids skip breakfast because they sleep too late or because they think it’s a way to stay thin. But skipping breakfast doesn’t help people maintain a healthy weight. In fact, someone who skips breakfast tends to eat more calories throughout the day.
If you find yourself skipping breakfast because you’re too rushed, try these quick breakfasts:
• single servings of whole-grain, low-sugar cereal
• whole-grain muffin
• fresh fruit
• trail mix
Kids who eat breakfast do better in school, are more likely to participate in physical activities and tend to eat healthier overall. So tomorrow morning, don’t run out the door on an empty stomach. Fuel up with a healthy breakfast!