As its name suggests, breakfast breaks the fast observed during the night. This first meal of the day helps meet the energy and nutrient needs the body needs to perform its daily functions. Here are some tips for preparing a sustaining breakfast and starting the day on the right foot.
The composition of an ideal breakfast
An ideal breakfast typically consists of three main components: fruits and / or vegetables, whole grain foods, and protein foods. Finally, breakfast is accompanied by a source of hydration.
Fruits and vegetables for breakfast
Fruits and vegetables provide vitamins, minerals and fiber. (See theDried Fruits) Vitamins and minerals are essential for good health and perform many functions in the body. As for fiber, it contributes to satiation and can also help regulate intestinal transit, reduce cholesterol and better control blood sugar. In addition, according to the World Health Organization (WHO), consuming at least 400 g of fruits and vegetables per day decreases the risk of noncommunicable diseases, such as cardiovascular disease and diabetes. (See the articles:Tips to lower bad cholesterol levels andHigh blood pressure: how to control it and the DASH diet)
Whole grain foods for breakfast
Examples of whole grain foods include whole grain breads, oatmeal, quinoa, buckwheat, whole grain flour, etc. Whole grain foods provide carbohydrates, the preferred source of energy for certain organs, including the brain and exercise muscles. Plus, unlike refined grain foods, whole grain foods provide more fiber, vitamins and minerals. (See the article:Constipation in adults)
Protein foods for breakfast
As the name suggests, protein foods, such as dairy products and their alternatives, tofu, eggs, seeds and nuts, are good sources of protein. These contribute to the feeling of satiety provided by a meal and support over a longer period. They also contribute to the proper functioning of the body by promoting muscle repair and the production of various enzymes. In terms of the type of protein, it is recommended to consume vegetable proteins more often. Plant-based proteins, such as tofu, nuts, and legumes, generally provide more fiber and less saturated fat than animal protein. This can have beneficial effects on cardiovascular health and the environment.
A source of hydration for breakfast
Finally, an ideal breakfast goes with a source of hydration. Like carbohydrates, fats and proteins, water is an essential nutrient for the human body. Indeed, it represents approximately 60% of the body weight of an adult and is involved in many functions of the organism, such as the transport of nutrients, the lubrication of the joints, the regulation of the body temperature and the maintenance of the blood volume. . Among the drinks to be preferred are water, tea, coffee and herbal tea.
The importance of variety and quality of food for breakfast
As with other meals of the day, it is important to vary the foods that make up breakfast by alternating between the different sources of fruits, vegetables, whole grains and protein. Food variety is important because it helps reduce the risk of nutritional deficiencies. By increasing the variety of your diet, you are consuming a wider range of different nutrients. Regarding the quality, it is preferable to opt for fresh foods and little or not processed. In fact, highly processed foods (e.g. breakfast cereals, industrial bakery products, spreads, etc.) are often high in salt, added sugars and saturated fat, which are harmful to health (See l 'article:Processed foods and the NOVA classification).
The amount of food at breakfast
Regarding the quantity, it varies according to the appetite of each individual. For example, people who are less hungry in the morning can eat a lighter breakfast and supplement it with a snack later in the morning.
Ultimately, each person is different and has unique needs. There is no one-size-fits-all breakfast that can fit everyone. The important thing is to find a way to eat that works for you while promoting your health. If you feel the need to, a consultation with a healthcare professional can help you with this process.
- « Water and the Electrolytes. Understanding Nutrition, by Eleanor N. Whitney et al., Nelson Education, 2013, pp. 355379..