The alarm goes oﬀ and you are rushing around preparing for a busy day ahead, whether you have children to get ready for school, or papers to read for a morning meeting, by the time you’ve watched the news, brushed your teeth and sorted your make-up, you are already exhausted – sound familiar?
It’s no wonder so many busy women end up skipping breakfast and just grabbing an expensive coﬀee which is drunk in the car on the way. But there are many reasons why this habit is bad for our health.
Breakfast Provides Many Beneﬁts to Our Health and Wellbeing
If you think about it properly, when you wake up in the morning, your body has had no fuel since your evening meal the night before – potentially 12 hours beforehand – so your body is in starvation. Think about the words – “break” “fast” – literally the meal which breaks the fast you have been on while sleeping. You need the energy to kick-start your system and get your body ready for the day ahead.
As a nutritionist I know, a healthy breakfast should give you around 30% of your daily calorie requirements. It provides us with energy, protein, calcium, iron, ﬁber and B vitamins which are all needed to get you through the day. If your body doesn’t receive these ﬁrst thing, studies have shown your body is less eﬀective at taking them on during the rest of the day.
How Eating Breakfast Helps You Lose Weight
If you skip breakfast you are not providing your body with what it needs for energy and you will soon get hungry and are more likely to then reach for high sugar, convenience snacks, to compensate. People who skip breakfast tend to end up reaching for the snacks around 10am which doesn’t help if you are trying to lose weight.
In terms of time, breakfast really needs to be eaten between 45 minutes and two hours of waking up. This timing gives you the chance to put the needed fuel into your body to make sure your metabolism is balanced throughout the day. It is also the premium time for your body to absorb any of the carbohydrates you consume, which helps balance out your insulin levels. All of these aspects mean breakfast really sets your body up for the day and can help curb those mid-morning sugar cravings.
In a study it was revealed that people who not only ate breakfast, but made it their largest meal, lost almost 8 kilograms over a three month period. The other people, who took part in the study, eating the same calories during the day but most of these for their evening meal, lost only around 3 kilograms. This study was published in Obesity.
Other Health Beneﬁts Beyond Weight Loss
Breakfast brings a large number of health beneﬁts, besides weight loss – providing more reasons why it really is important not to skip this particular meal.
Studies have proven that children who eat breakfast do better at school as they are better able to concentrate and behave well. If it has this beneﬁt for our children, then it will do the same for us. Breakfast helps to restore the levels of glucose which help with our brain function. This helps to improve memory, concentration and mood and also lowers stress levels. We all know that feeling of anger that rises up through being hungry. Breakfast can help us avoid this.
Breakfast is the ﬁrst supply of energy your body receives when you wake up, making it part of your daily required calorie intake. A good nutritious breakfast will give you all the energy you need to take you through to lunchtime, and should be around 300 calories as a general rule. If you think about the energy you burn, you need the most in the morning and you need the least in the evening, when you are more likely to be sitting on the couch relaxing. Make breakfast your energy priority.
In the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, a published study revealed that not eating breakfast could actually increase the risk of diabetes for women. The study showed that women who did eat breakfast between zero to six times a week, were at far higher risk of developing the disease than those who ate it daily.
Fab Ideas for Quick and Nutritious Breakfasts for Busy Women
So it’s all very well telling you as a busy woman, why you should eat breakfast, and why it’s good for you, but realistically you probably knew most of those things already and yet, you were still skipping it? Knowing you need to eat breakfast, doesn’t mean you suddenly gain time in the morning to start preparing and making amazing morning meals does it? That’s why I have come up with some tips for tasty breakfasts that are super quick to make.
An Energy Bar and Fruit
The combination of a piece of fruit and a quality whole food energy bar creates a balanced breakfast, providing ﬁber and vitamins. What can be quicker than just peeling a wrapper and a piece of fruit and eating them straight away? Just doing this could make a big diﬀerence to your health.
One super easy option is porridge – all you need to do is add water and cook it on low on the stove top for a few minutes while you are getting ready, and then you have a healthy breakfast. Avoid the instant sachet ones with added sugar, anti-caking agents, and ﬂavors.
Go for natural plain Greek-style yoghurt and add in fresh fruit, for a nutritious, quick and healthy breakfast on the run. Again, this only takes a minute or so to prepare and can make a big diﬀerence to your health and wellbeing.
Preparing a chia pudding or some overnight oats the evening prior, allows you to grab them and go. Chia seeds are a great source of protein and excellent for digestive health. Top these with some fruit, nuts, or seeds, and you’ll be feeling fuller for longer.
For many women, a busy lifestyle means rushing in the morning and skipping breakfast is a common but bad habit to get into. Breakfast can make a big diﬀerence to our health and weight, reaping the beneﬁts for us and there are many options which are quick and easy to make, from smoothies, to energy bars, from cereal to scrambled eggs, so no more excuses ladies!