The cure for your sluggish mornings could be as simple as a smart breakfast. This list will help you choose foods that will give you sustained energy, not a short blast then a mid-day crash. Think complex carbohydrates (whole grains), high fiber, high protein, and good fats.
Why: Rich in protein, eggs help prevent food cravings.
How: Two to three eggs make for a satisfying scramble, omelet, or on-the-go snack when they're hard-boiled. Add flavor and nutrients with fresh herbs and/or veggies.
Nutritionist's tip: "Don't forget the yolk," says registered dietitian Katherine Brooking. "It provides more than 13 important nutrients like vitamins A and zinc, which maintain immune function and tissue growth."
Why: The complex carbohydrates in oatmeal provide vitamins and minerals that give us energy. (Simple carbohydrates, like those in white bread, carry the risk of being converted to fat and stored.) Go for old-fashioned or steel-cut oats. They're high in protein and soluble fiber, which lowers cholesterol and makes you feel fuller longer.
How: The topping options are endless. Try unsweetened dried, fresh or frozen fruit; flax, chia, or pumpkin seeds; spices like cinnamon or nutmeg; nuts like almonds and walnuts; or a drizzle of raw honey or grade B maple syrup.
Nutritionist's tip: "Oats benefit the brain by boosting the production of serotonin to combat stress and enhance learning and memory function," says nutritionist Keri Glassman.
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