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Nutrition and Hydration Week 2017 – Did you eat breakfast this morning?

shutterstock_119131129To celebrate Nutrition and Hydration week 2017, Our Registered Dietitian Ruth Smith, offers her advice in the second of  this five part series published every day during Nutrition and Hydration Week.

Did you eat breakfast this morning? 

Did you know……

  • Breakfast literally means ‘breaking the fast’ as you have had no food or ‘fasted’ since the day before.
  • Breakfast helps top up the energy stores you have used up during the night whilst your body repairs and renews itself. It also gives you mental and physical energy for your morning activities at work.
  • Breakfast is said to be the most important meal of the day, yet up to one-third of us regularly miss this essential meal.
  • Missing breakfast may result in snacking on less healthy foods high in fat and/or sugar later on in the morning without necessarily catching up on essential nutrients, such as iron, fibre and vitamins.
  • Eating breakfast may also help to improve mental performance, concentration and mood – three more good reasons to eat something in the morning.
  • Starchy foods such as bread and cereals provide energy, B vitamins, some iron and fibre.  Cereals are a really good choice, as well as being quick and easy to prepare, they are often fortified with vitamins, iron and calcium to contribute to your daily nutritional requirements. Best to choose wholegrain cereals as these are higher in fibre and avoid cereals coated in sugar.  Porridge, bread, rolls, English muffins, scones, malt loaf, fruit bread, currant buns and bagels all provide good sources of energy that will help kick start your metabolism and they’re all low in fat too.
  • Fruit and vegetables are good sources of vitamins and fibre. Breakfast is a perfect time to boost your 5-a-day intake.  Try adding some fruit to your cereal, having a banana if you are on the go, or a glass of fresh fruit juice.
  • Milk and dairy foods give you protein, calcium and B vitamins. Calcium is essential to keep your bones strong and healthy whatever your age and a serving of milk on your cereal can give you up to one third of your daily calcium needs.  Use low-fat milks like skimmed, semi-skimmed or 1%. If you don’t have cereal, try a glass of milk on its own or in a milkshake/smoothie, or have a pot of low-fat yoghurt instead.
  • If you can’t face eating first thing try to eat within two hours of getting up. Keep some healthy wholegrain cereal at work and add milk and some fruit to make it a balanced meal.

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This information is provided to promote healthy eating in the workplace for healthy individuals.  It is not intended for the use of anyone who is pregnant or has a medical condition.

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