While intermittent fasting may be all the rage, there is still something to be said for the good old habit of enjoying a morning meal. It is an often untapped way to begin the day on a good note and prepare for what’s ahead.

There is no one right dietary pattern that works for everyone. But, for many people, there are important benefits to eating breakfast. Whether or not you need a morning meal depends on how your body feels when you wake up and your unique response to long hours without food.

Skipping breakfast may work great for some people. But, that doesn’t mean it’s the right eating pattern for you.

Don’t get caught up in dietary trends. Instead, listen to your body and choose whether to eat based on how you feel.

If you’re on the fence about breakfast, here are 3 of the top benefits that make it a good choice to start the day.

1. Get a Boost of Energy First Thing in the Morning

Eating Breakfast

Some of us wake up ready to go and need very little to get ourselves moving. In contrast, others feel tired and sluggish and don’t have energy until they’ve eaten.

One is not better than the other, but it’s essential to know which group you fall into. There is nothing magical about breakfast, but for those who need it, that boost to their energy levels from a healthy breakfast can make or break their day.

If you are tired or hungry in the morning, eat breakfast. Denying your body’s needs in a misguided attempt to follow the most recent diet trends will only leave you depleted and irritable.

2. Easily Meet Your Nutritional Needs for the Day

Getting 5-7 servings of fruits and vegetables requires a bit more planning if you only eat two meals a day. Eating breakfast makes it more likely you will consume adequate amounts of essential nutrients, including vitamins A & D, calcium, and fiber. (1)

A balanced breakfast of protein, fats, and plant foods gives your body a jump start on the necessary building blocks for good health.

3. You May Be Less Likely to Overeat Later in the Day

Eating Breakfast

If you are someone who experiences energy dips in the afternoon and evening, then breakfast may be an important meal for you.

The spacing and timing of your meals determine the stability of your blood sugar levels. If you have swings in blood sugar, you will likely feel tired and hungry. You are more likely to overdo it with afternoon or evening snacking if you are low on energy and ravenous late in the day.

Your morning meal can help balance your blood sugar levels. (2) If you are currently a big snacker, it might be worth trying a balanced breakfast for a few days and see if it curbs your appetite.

Making Breakfast Happen

An ideal breakfast contains a balance of healthy fat, protein, and a small number of carbohydrates. It should also provide a serving of fruits and vegetables.

Instead of reaching for a highly processed box of cereal, have better foods available to grab and go. If your morning schedule doesn’t allow time to prepare breakfast, here are some foods to have on hand:

  • Hard-boiled eggs
  • Bananas
  • Peanut or almond butter
  • Whole grain bread
  • Avocados
  • Leftover steamed vegetables
  • Smoothie ingredients such as yogurt, greens, berries, nut butter, avocado, cucumbers, etc.
  • Cottage cheese
  • Oatmeal
  • Fruit and nut bars
  • Nuts and dried fruit

If you have more time on your hands, consider one of these options:

Eating Breakfast
  • Omelet with 2-3 eggs and 2 cups of vegetables
  • Whole grain toast spread with ½ an avocado and sprinkled with salt and pepper
  • Flaxseed muffin spread with butter and sugar-free jam or applesauce
  • Homemade potato and vegetable frittata
  • Baked oatmeal with berries
  • Baked sweet potato with a fried egg
  • Breakfast burrito with a whole grain wrap, beans, eggs, salsa, and avocado

Eating to Feel Well

The right eating pattern for you is one that helps you feel your best. Be mindful of how your meals affect you. Notice if you feel worn out and depleted.

Breakfast can be a worthy anchor in your day to give you energy, increase your nutrient intake and prevent unhealthy snacking.

When you are mindful of your body’s signals, it will guide you to what you need. A morning meal may be just the thing to boost your well-being.