The importance of eating breakfast
The reason breakfast is vital to us is due to the fact that we are fasting all night. Many of us fast for 9 or 10 hours during the night so eating a healthy, energy fuelled breakfast is vital. By skipping breakfast you are leaving yourself susceptible to adverse health effects, weight gain and lower performance. 

There are studies to which prove that eating a healthy breakfast can help:
*Improve concentration and performance  
*Reduce cholesterol levels
*Increase nutritional intake such as vitamins and minerals

Breakfast and weight control 
Individuals who eat breakfast tend to weigh less than those who skip breakfast. By eating breakfast you are reducing hunger throughout the day, meaning you are more inclined to select healthier food choices at other meals. The impression certain people have on skipping breakfast is that you are saving calories; the truth is that skipping breakfast means you are more likely binge throughout the day and eat larger meals such as lunch. As part of a healthy lifestyle and weight control, it is essential to include breakfast. Aim for breakfasts that contain protein and/or whole grains and not processed meats (eg. fry ups) or sugar dense cereals which can be loaded with fat and calories. 

Check food labels
Even sweet cereals can also have high levels of salt so always check the label before purchasing. It is not unusual for a cereal to have 1/3 of your Recommended Daily Allowance (RDA) of sodium. Greater than 1.5g of Salt per 100g is considered very high. For example, Special K® has 1.1g of salt per 100g and corn flakes have 1.3g per 100g; take that into consideration if you have any health concerns (eg) too much salt can raise blood pressure. 

The same goes for sugar content; some cereals have as much sugar (per 30g serving) as 3 chocolate digestive biscuits (eg) Crunchy Nut® Cornflakes has 35g of sugar per 100g.  Any food which contains more than 15g of sugar per 100g is high in sugar. Similarly Special K®, which many consider to be a low fat cereal, has 17g of sugar per 100g. Anything less than 10g of sugar is more preferable; too much sugar in the morning can lead your sugars to rise to quickly which can cause a “sugar crash” later in the morning and increase hunger pangs.  It’s vital to stabilise your sugars as this will help regulate your hunger and mood and reduce a future risk of diabetes type 2 . The likes of porridge and high fibre cereals like Weetabix® are likely to keep you fuller for longer. Don’t forget, you can add fruit like bananas and blueberries to the likes of porridge to help achieve your “five a day”.

This food label above says everything about some of your favourite breakfast cereals. Porridge comes out trumps! This is why I eat porridge every morning.

Keep fuller for long 
Choose a breakfast that will keep you fuelled for 2-3 hours. A wholemeal breakfast is the best choice for keeping your hunger pangs at bay (eg) Porridge, Branflakes®, Weetabix®, Brown bread. Wholegrain choices also contain more vitamins and minerals as they are not processed and are highly beneficial in the diet as they contain fibre. Fibre from adequate sources can reduce the absorption of dietary fats and cholesterol, which may result in lower blood cholesterol concentrations thus reducing the risk of heart disease. If you are having porridge chose rolled or steel cut oats avoid quick oats they are much more processed. 

Breakfast options 
Option 1
Fruit compote (this contains 3 portions of fruit or your daily allowance) 
1 kiwi fruit (½ portion)
1 mandarin, segmented  (½ portion)
10 -15 mixed berries (blueberries, blackberries, raspberries, strawberries) 1 portion 
1 of the following – apple, banana, pear (1 portion) 
Tbl Natural yoghurt 

Option 2 
30g rolled porridge oats  
Sprinkling of fresh fruit of your choice  (I always add banana)
1/2 low fat milk and 1/2 water 

Option 3
2 Weetabix 
10 – 12 berries (blueberries , blackberries, raspberries, strawberries)
Low fat milk

Option 4 
Poached egg on granary bread 
- Two Eggs 
- Two tablespoons low fat milk
- Two slices granary bread
- 2tsp low fat spread (Flora low low)

Option 5
30g all bran
20 goji berries
Low fat milk

Option 6 
Overnight oats
30g rolled Porridge oats 
mixed berries
natural yoghurt 

Combine all the ingredients in layers in a jar and leave in the fridge over night the yoghurt will soften  the oats and the berries will add some natural sweetness. You can add whatever you want into this mixture (nuts, chia seeds, banana etc.)

Bye bye fry?
If you are a lover of a big fry up on a Sunday morning then there are still ways you can still enjoy it, don't forget everything in moderation. Instead of frying your food why not grill and opt for Turkey bacon and sausages instead of pork as  they contain less sat and saturated fat. Unfortunately I am not going to say enjoy a fry every day its not advisable for good health and will leave you susceptible to certain diseases if eaten over a long period of time 2 -3  mornings a week. Be very clever when it comes to breakfast choices as it really does set you up for the day 

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