Breakfast Is the Most Important Meal of the Day

Find out what you may be missing when you cut out your morning meal.

Ask anyone on the street about the most important meal of the day and they’ll tell you, “breakfast.” But more than one in five of them will also tell you they skipped it. If you’re one of the millions of Americans who pass on the morning meal, we get it: there are plenty of snacking opportunities during the day to meet your energy needs, right? But take a minute to read through just how much benefit there is to an early pick-me-up.

Your brain runs on glucose, a natural sugar, and without fuel, it gets sluggish. A morning meal can help you shake that grogginess and improve memory, attention and focus. And a little extra energy goes a long way towards improving performance at school or at work.

But food isn’t just for your brain. In fact, breakfast eaters tend to burn over 400 calories more per day than their breakfast-skipping counterparts. It’s not because breakfast boosts your metabolism, that one’s a myth. But the extra nutrients and fuel for your muscles make you more apt to get up and get moving.

Let’s get serious: Eating breakfast can help prevent heart attacks. A healthy breakfast can help you keep your weight down, and excess weight is a key factor in future heart health. People who skipped breakfast are shown to be 21% more likely to develop diabetes. And increased body weight can lead to higher blood pressure and higher cholesterol. All of which can increase the risks for heart disease. But it’s not too late.

What should you be eating to get all the perks out of your breakfast? Go for foods with whole grains and look for leaner proteins, like eggs or turkey. Aim for low-fat dairy options to keep it light. And of course, fruits and veggies always pack a nutrient-rich, flavorful punch. A mixture of these can help you feel more full for the rest of the day, which might cut down on excess snacking and oversized meals later in the day. So, start your morning off right and get ready for a happier, healthier day ahead.

Healthy, green, open-faced breakfast sandwich.

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