Break the fast, get energy and be focused for work, school or free time by eating a good breakfast.
Foods with lean protein and high fiber help to rev up your metabolism and maintain a healthful weight. That’s one reason why breakfast is the most important meal of the day.
Studies have shown that eating breakfast can help lower LDL cholesterol (also called “bad cholesterol”) and reduce the risk of obesity, diabetes and heart disease. Eating breakfast can also fend off the temptation to eat sugary and fatty snacks.
More:Southwestern chicken salad will keep sneaky calories away from your plate
More:Avocado and Greek yogurt replace mayonnaise and mustard in these deviled eggs
More:Looking for a fiber boost? Try whole-wheat spaghetti with carrots and turkey ragu
Think about portion size and your activity level when you plan your breakfast and try to choose foods from most of the food groups. Here are some examples:
- Oatmeal made with milk, bananas sautéed in vanilla extract and cinnamon, then topped with walnuts.
- Omelet with spinach, mushrooms and tomatoes, plus a small bowl of berries.
- Whole-wheat waffle with a thin layer of peanut butter, plus sliced apples on the side.
- Plain, low-fat Greek yogurt topped with almonds and berries.
- Scrambled egg, chopped cucumber and tomato, slice of whole-wheat toast, half a banana.
- Peanut butter and banana sandwich on whole-wheat toast.
In a hurry or prefer savory foods? Consider leftovers from last night’s dinner. Or use an English muffin or a tortilla to microwave a quick veggie pizza with tomatoes, cheese or mushrooms.
If you make these Cinnamon Applesauce Muffins ahead of time, you can use them for snacks, brunches or lunches. When you’re having a rushed breakfast, one of these muffins is great with a hard-boiled egg and a glass of milk. It’s a delicious way to break the fast.
Bethany Thayer is a registered dietitian nutritionist with Henry Ford Health. For more recipes and health information, visit henryford.com/blog. For questions about today’s recipe, email [email protected].
Cinnamon Applesauce Muffins
Makes: 12 muffins / Prep time: 20 minutes / Total time: 45 minutes
Nonstick cooking spray
1 cup old-fashioned oats
½ cup fat-free milk
1 cup unsweetened applesauce
1 large egg
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 Tablespoons canola oil
½ cup whole wheat flour
½ cup all-purpose flour
½ cup brown sugar
1 teaspoon baking powder
2 teaspoons cinnamon
½ teaspoon baking soda
½ teaspoon salt
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Spray a standard 12-cup muffin pan with nonstick cooking spray.
In a large bowl, combine oats and milk. In a separate bowl, combine applesauce, egg, vanilla and canola oil. Stir in the oat mixture slowly. Add whole-wheat and all-purpose flours, brown sugar, baking powder, cinnamon, baking soda and salt. Stir until just combined.
Divide the mixture evenly among muffin cups. Bake until muffins are cooked through, about 12-14 minutes.
Remove from oven and cool.
From Henry Ford LiveWell
135 calories (22% from fat), 3 grams fat (0 grams sat. fat), 24 grams carbohydrates, 3 grams protein, 160 mg sodium, 15 mg cholesterol, 72 mg calcium, 2 grams fiber. Food exchanges: 1 ½ starch, 1 fat.