Breakfast of a Champion

Posted on: March 28, 2013Chicago

Post written by CHC Member Amber Adams

Amber serves at Heartland Health Centers as a Health Educator


"When you wake up in the morning, Pooh," said Piglet at last, "what's the first thing you say to yourself?" "What's for breakfast?" said Pooh. "What do you say, Piglet?" "I say, I wonder what's going to happen exciting today?" said Piglet. Pooh nodded thoughtfully. "It's the same thing," he said."  ― A.A. Milne   You may have heard it said before that breakfast is the most important meal of the day. Breakfast gives us energy for our daily activities and sets the momentum for us to perform at our very best.  Starting your day with a balanced breakfast not only gives your body the fuel it needs, but is also an important part of incorporating a healthier diet.   As a Chicago Health Corps member, I meet with patients for individualized nutrition counseling at Heartland Health Center. I stress the importance of making time for breakfast. Skipping breakfast is essentially like fasting for up to 15 hours- during this period of semi-starvation, your body actually accumulates fat, trying to conserve as much energy as possible and slowing down your metabolism.  Studies show that people who skip breakfast often weigh more, and are more likely to nibble on high-calorie snacks to ward off hunger and overeat during later meals.  Even if it requires setting that alarm and crawling out the bed 15 minutes earlier, eating a good breakfast is proven for good health.    So, you might be asking,'What is a Breakfast of a Champion?" Well, partly, it should include what you like, have time for, and will give your body that good ol' energy it needs. I recommend following MyPlate guidelines, which suggest trying to incorporate at least 3 of the 5 food groups in at breakfast time. Try a serving of protein, fruit and a high-fiber food like toasted whole grain bread, high-fiber (not sugary) breakfast cereal, or oatmeal.  For more information, visit MyPlate SuperTracker today for free recipes, help with planning, analyzing, and tracking your breakfast, and much more.   Remember, breakfast doesn't have to be elaborate, but something for breakfast is always better than nothing. Whether at the table, on the train, or in the office, start your day with breakfast, it's the champion thing to do.