They say breakfast is the most important meal of the day. The truth is, every meal matters, but the science shows that what you choose for breakfast can significantly impact your health.

Dr. Juan has two recommendations when planning your breakfast menu:

Pump up the protein

Starting your day with protein helps you feel full longer and eat less during the day. One study compared people who ate an egg breakfast to others who ate a bagel breakfast. Those who ate eggs reported feeling more full in the next 3.5 hours before they had lunch. What’s more, they ate 23% fewer calories at lunch. (1)

Other researchers added that a high-protein breakfast reduced the total amount of calories consumed for the following 24 hours. (2)

Eating protein first thing in the morning helps you manage your blood sugar. One study found that a high-protein breakfast helped steady the participants’ levels of blood sugar and insulin during the day. (3)

Scientists at the VA Medical Center in Minneapolis noted that a high-protein diet lowered people’s post-meal blood-sugar level by 40%. (4)

Fill up on fiber

Fiber supports proper digestion, and it is essential to help you feel full. Why? Your body takes more time to break down high-fiber foods, which helps you maintain that full feeling. (5) Fiber soaks up water in your intestines, forming a gel-like substance that slows the absorption of carbohydrates to your blood. This deceleration helps maintain consistent a blood sugar level by promoting a gentle rise and fall of blood sugar rather than a spike. (6)

Fiber is in your corner in the fight against bad cholesterol. In a study of 20 men and women experiencing high cholesterol, those who consumed a high-fiber meal saw their LDL “bad” cholesterol dip by 9%. (7)

Add blueberries, strawberries, or raspberries to your breakfast because they are high fiber and low sugar. Oatmeal is another good choice for fiber, as are avocados.

Our cultures have included nopal in their diets for thousands of years, and with good reason. Nopal is a great source of fiber. A nopal supplement makes getting fiber even easier since you only have to consume a little, versus eating a ton of fresh nopal (though that’s a delicious way, too!).

In addition to protecting you from metabolic syndrome, maintaining consistent blood sugar also helps you have energy throughout the whole day.

Final word

Fueling your body with the right breakfast can help your body’s systems run smoothly in the short and long term. And knowing you’ve made an early healthy choice can give you motivation to keep making good choices the rest of the day.

Let’s get healthier, together,

Your friends at Santo Remedio

References

[1] Vander Wal, J. S., Marth, J. M., Khosla, P., Jen, K. L., & Dhurandhar, N. V. (2005). Short-term effect of eggs on satiety in overweight and obese subjects. Journal of the American College of Nutrition, 24(6), 510–515. https://doi.org/10.1080/07315724.2005.10719497

[2] Ratliff, J., Leite, J. O., de Ogburn, R., Puglisi, M. J., VanHeest, J., & Fernandez, M. L. (2010). Consuming eggs for breakfast influences plasma glucose and ghrelin, while reducing energy intake during the next 24 hours in adult men. Nutrition research (New York, N.Y.), 30(2), 96–103. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.nutres.2010.01.002

[3] Rains, T. M., Leidy, H. J., Sanoshy, K. D., Lawless, A. L., & Maki, K. C. (2015). A randomized, controlled, crossover trial to assess the acute appetitive and metabolic effects of sausage and egg-based convenience breakfast meals in overweight premenopausal women. Nutrition journal, 14, 17. https://doi.org/10.1186/s12937-015-0002-7

[4] Gannon, M. C., Nuttall, F. Q., Saeed, A., Jordan, K., & Hoover, H. (2003). An increase in dietary protein improves the blood glucose response in persons with type 2 diabetes. The American journal of clinical nutrition, 78(4), 734–741. https://doi.org/10.1093/ajcn/78.4.734

[5] Burton-Freeman B. (2000). Dietary fiber and energy regulation. The Journal of nutrition, 130(2S Suppl), 272S–275S. https://doi.org/10.1093/jn/130.2.272S

[6] Gibb, R. D., McRorie, J. W., Jr, Russell, D. A., Hasselblad, V., & D'Alessio, D. A. (2015). Psyllium fiber improves glycemic control proportional to loss of glycemic control: a meta-analysis of data in euglycemic subjects, patients at risk of type 2 diabetes mellitus, and patients being treated for type 2 diabetes mellitus. The American journal of clinical nutrition, 102(6), 1604–1614. https://doi.org/10.3945/ajcn.115.106989

[7] Rebello, C. J., Johnson, W. D., Martin, C. K., Xie, W., O'Shea, M., Kurilich, A., Bordenave, N., Andler, S., van Klinken, B. J., Chu, Y. F., & Greenway, F. L. (2013). Acute effect of oatmeal on subjective measures of appetite and satiety compared to a ready-to-eat breakfast cereal: a randomized crossover trial. Journal of the American College of Nutrition, 32(4), 272–279. https://doi.org/10.1080/07315724.2013.816614

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