Ellie Wilson, MS, RD, CDN Senior Nutritionist, Price Chopper Supermarkets
My son is in 6th grade, and getting pretty busy. School, Boy Scouts and basketball two nights per week are keeping us busy. With hectic schedules, it is even more important to start off the day right with a good breakfast.
More and more research is connecting breakfast to positive health benefits. The most important meal of the day offers appetite management, better concentration, and weight control, to name a few. The traditional idea of a bowl of cereal being sufficient is also being modified, as we realize that protein must be part of that meal for everyone, children and adults, to really get the best benefit.
For children, breakfast is related to better behavior, increased concentration, and better test scores. On the playground and in the gym, breakfast eaters have better energy, and better eye-hand coordination. For adults, the benefits are nearly identical, but used in different settings – better concentration and productivity, as well as less fatigue. Last, breakfast eaters tend to weigh less than breakfast skippers.
Adding protein in is key to boosting breakfast – protein helps keep you full, especially when it is combined with whole grain and high fiber. Children need their age plus 5 grams of fiber per day, and adults need 25 – 35 grams per day. This type of breakfast also keeps you satisfied longer, so less hunger pangs in the late morning. Check out the following options and ideas.
- One cup Price Chopper Greek yogurt (vanilla), with ¼ cup low fat, high fiber granola – include a few walnuts or almonds for additional protein and heart-healthy fat. Vanilla or plain have low or no added sugar, and Greek yogurt is higher in protein than regular yogurt. Add a quarter cup of berries – fresh or frozen with no added sugar.
- Cheerios and low fat milk, a 4 oz yogurt, and a small banana.
- Egg sandwich with one slice of Canadian bacon on whole wheat or multi-grain English muffin or bread with at least 5 grams of fiber in the bread serving. FYI – eggs can be eaten most days by most people – research has demonstrated that daily egg intake does not increase cholesterol levels in most individuals.
- Be a little non-traditional – whole wheat thin crust pizza – for breakfast!
- Double-fiber wheat toast and lean ham – with mustard for a fast sandwich on the go!
- Breakfast pancake taco – from the Kids Cooking Club – pancake with vanilla Greek yogurt or cream cheese/yogurt blend (see the recipe at PriceChopper.com), sliced strawberries or whole blueberries folded in the middle. We made them Sunday, and enjoyed a great start to our day!