Did You Eat Breakfast This Morning?

Chicken sausage and eggs: it doesn't get easier than this. Photo by Ayla Withee.

Ask yourself this: how much more likely are you to grab a few munchkins that were left in the break room when you have not eaten breakfast versus when you have? Those little doughnut holes, which are 60 calories a pop, are tough to resist anyway, nevermind when you are hungry.

With time being in short supply in the morning, breakfast can be the most difficult meal of the day. Yet, research shows that people who eat breakfast are able to manage their weight more easily than those who forgo the morning meal. Many people I have worked with over the years believe that by skipping breakfast, they spare calories for the rest of the day, but quite the opposite is true: research shows that breakfast eaters actually eat fewer calories overall most likely because you cut out a lot of the mindless snacking and overeating at lunch and dinner due to hunger.

So how can you start your day right? Keep on driving past that Dunkin’ Donuts, where bagels and cream cheese are in the 500-calorie range, and either make something quick and easy at home or the office.

By “quick and easy,” I do not mean grab something from Aunt Jemima. The brand, which is famous for breakfast comfort foods, does not usually have your health in mind. The Sausage and Egg Scramble has an excessively long list of ingredients and 5 grams of saturated fat per serving. Instead, try making a vegetable & sausage frittata at the beginning of the week in muffin tins for a perfectly portioned, freezable breakfast option. You can turn it into a breakfast sandwich to go by pairing with a whole grain English muffin or whole-wheat toast. Quick tip: look for the word “whole” as the first ingredient listed to ensure that what you are buying is in fact a whole grain product. For a local, delicious whole grain loaf, try the Hi-Rise Bread Company’s (located in Huron Village and Harvard Square) whole grain seeded loaf or their Huron loaf.

For a really quick, protein-rich, low-fat, hot breakfast, I slice Applegate Farms Spinach and Feta Chicken Sausage, which you can pick up at any of the Whole Foods markets scattered throughout the city, and scramble in a frying pan (lightly sprayed with cooking spray) with one egg. You can sprinkle a little low-fat cheese on top and pair with some whole-wheat toast, oatmeal ,or fruit. It is a good idea to shoot for at least three food groups when meal planning to get in a variety of nutrients. Another filling, helps-me-say-no-to-the-muchkins-breakfast: oatmeal with banana and dark sweet cherries. Sprinkle some nuts on top and you have yourself another power breakfast option. Or, if you are the type that just has no appetite for breakfast, try making a smoothie to sip on throughout the morning.

What do you like to eat for breakfast?