Everyone has heard before that breakfast is the most important meal of the day but no one tells us why. There actually is a science behind the phrase that people should know about. Even if you’re in a hurry or you aren’t hungry, eating breakfast is a better alternative than waiting.
The word “breakfast” literally means “to break” a “fast.” However long you slept the night before is the amount of time your body didn’t get any nutrients. At this point, your body is running on nothing, so you will continue to feel sluggish until you get some calories in your system.
A big meal is not necessary as long as you get all of the nutrients needed. A healthy breakfast contains a mix of carbohydrates, healthy fats, protein and fiber. The carbohydrates are important to fuel your body and give you quick energy, protein will provide long-lasting energy and fiber will keep you feeling full and satisfied throughout the day.
Doughnuts and pastries are popular breakfasts nowadays because they are easy to grab on your way out the door, but these treats will only give a quick burst of energy followed by a crash of fatigue. Foods like whole grain cereals, low-fat milk or yogurt along with a side of fruit are perfect to keep your body feeling energized all day long.
While it is important for everyone to follow these guidelines, it is even more important for college students. Students are hard at work everyday studying, working and sometimes practicing if they are involved in athletics. Studies have shown that young adults have a harder time staying focused during school, while also feeling more restless or cranky, if they don’t get a balanced breakfast.
College is also a time where many students start gaining weight due to bad sleeping and eating habits. Everyone has heard of or experienced the “Freshman Fifteen” at some point. Cutting calories is what most people will try to do when they decide to lose weight, but cutting out breakfast calories can be even more detrimental. Eating right when you wake up kick-starts your metabolism and helps you burn more calories during the day.
So resist that doughnut, and try grabbing some granola or a protein bar next time you’re hurrying out the door. Your body will thank you!