We all know that breakfast is one of the most important meals of the day, perhaps even the most important. Here are some golden rules to follow to build a healthy and nourishing breakfast
Breakfast is a very important meal. As the name indicates, it breaks our fast after a good night's sleep, and as such, it should be a nourishing start of the day.
To build a healthy breakfast, follow these rules:
1. Start with carbohydrates:
Preferably slow-releasing ones, such as whole-grain bread or whole-grain cereals like oats, buckwheat, or a good mix of muesli. Carbohydrates should account for 50-60 % of total breakfast calories.
2. Add some healthy fats
Avocado, nuts, extra virgin olive oil. Stay away from processed fats.
3. And protein
A serving of good quality protein such as salmon, tofu, tempeh, unsweetened yogurt (soy if you don't consume dairy), quinoa, beans, or a good quality protein powder.
4. Top with a good serving of fruits and vegetables
Frozen berries are a great option, as they are usually frozen at the peak of freshness. Vegetables are always a good idea. You can add some greens to your smoothie or scrambled tofu, or top your avocado toast with some cherry tomatoes or spinach. While you can drink fruit juice fruit at breakfast, remember that if you eat fruit whole you will get more satiated because it will provide more fiber and will have a lower glycaemic index.
- Oatmeal. It's one of the most complete cereals. It is rich in high biological value protein. Serving size is about 45-50g depending on your activity levels. Remember that oats will double in size once cooked. You can mix oats with quinoa, rice, teff, buckwheat, or any other grain to boost your protein intake.
- Dried fruits are a welcome choice, but watch out for portions as such as they are very caloric and may have high sugar content.
- Healthy fats. They are the most energetic foods, but it is advisable that they are of good quality (nuts, avocado, olive oil) and not processed.
- Wholemeal bread. Don't just rely on the dark color of the bread, it can be made with colored flour. You can only trust it to be completely wholemeal if it is labeled with 100% wheat or rye flour or 100% whole grain. It must contain at least 75% wholemeal flour, according to experts.
- Wholemeal cereals: oats, buckwheat, quinoa, teff, or a mix of muesli. Variety is key. Add fruits or berries such as blueberries, raspberries, kiwi. Combine with milk of choice or yogurt and top with nuts and seeds. You're good to go.