Yes! Some people love breakfast – they eat it every morning – they have no idea why so many people balk about it.
But more often than that, what I hear from people is that they are:
Not hungry in morning
Eating breakfast makes them hungrier
Just like to have coffee (yikes – I just realized I forgot to have mine – that explains some things)
This beautiful breakfast is what my friend, running buddy, and awesome photographer, Erin Cobb, had this morning after a little discussion about it on our run. She’s on my team for the Runner’s Nutrition Challenge that started today, so this is a good start!
Personally, I love breakfast, however I do not find it particularly convenient – especially after fixing everyone else’s breakfast while trying to pack lunches, sign permission slips, look for missing shoes, feed the cats, feed the dog, let the dog out – let her in, yell for people to brush their teeth, get their backpacks, grab their lunch… and on, and on, and on. All while also trying to get my own shower (sometimes), and get out the door with everyone by 7:30 – did I mention that I usually don’t get home from my run until 6:45? It’s 45 minutes of sheer madness.
Anyway, my point is that I totally get it. When are we supposed to eat breakfast, let alone fix it, and fix it well? I have got to go get my coffee…
Side note: Since I participate in all the challenges that I put out there, you never have to worry about me taking away the coffee!
For a quick lesson on metabolism, and the important role breakfast plays you can check out this topic handout under the Food and Nutrition Tab
Today, let’s talk protein though. Here are some reasons and some tips for including a fair amount of protein at breakfast:
Protein slows the rate that the stomach empties, and it has a high satiety value. Therefore, it plays a big role in getting you to lunch without feeling like you are going to eat your own arm off.
A quick bite to eat without any protein (toast and coffee) will provide your body with the energy to get your metabolism going just enough for you to be STARVING in a couple hours. This makes it difficult to eat well at lunch – hunger spurs cravings of high fat/highly refined foods. This is assuming you even make it to lunch without grabbing a junky snack.
A good protein source with breakfast will also help to stabilize your blood sugar throughout the morning – this is especially so for people managing varying degrees of diabetes or hypoglycemia.
People’s protein needs vary, as do the recommendations. There is a constant stream of research on the topic as well. Based on the study of a conglomeration of this research combined with my work with numbers of people, I like to encourage people to get around 20 grams of protein at breakfast. It sounds like a lot, but when you break down the numbers, it’s still pretty low.
Check this out: Depending upon health, activity level, age, etc. protein recommendations can range from .8grams/kg of body weight to 1.5g/kg and above.
Athletes as well as people who do regular moderate exercise with strength training, endurance cardio, etc. need 1.2 – 1.7g/kg/day.
For average adult men this equals: 84-119 grams of protein per day
For average adult women this equals: 66 – 94 grams of protein per day
Sedentary men and women need less protein 0.8 – 1.0grams/kg/day.
That’s 56 – 70 grams for men and 46 – 57 grams for women
For some real food ideas for how to get approximately 20 grams of protein in at breakfast check out these quick ideas I threw together.
I hope this helps! Have a great week, and thanks for reading!