Eat breakfast. Eating breakfast gets your metabolism going for the day. That gives you more energy. If you skip breakfast, you set yourself up to snack during the morning, often on high-fat foods (donuts and sweet rolls). Missing breakfast can also cause you to eat too much food later in the day at other meals.
- Eating breakfast every day may reduce the risk for obesity and insulin resistance syndrome—an early sign of developing diabetes—by as much as 35 to 50 percent, according to a study presented at a recent American Heart Association conference.
- Eat whole-grain cereal. Look for cereals that list whole grain or bran as their first ingredient and contain at least 2 grams of dietary fiber per serving. Bran cereal and oatmeal contain at least 7 grams per serving, or about 25 percent of the recommended daily intake. Fiber One cereal contains 15 grams of fiber for a half cup.
- No time is not an excuse. Here's a quick way to make oatmeal—a great breakfast cereal. Pour one cup of water in a good-sized microwavable bowl (the cereal bubbles up when cooking). Add 1/2 cup of old-fashioned oats (steel cut are the best). Just don't use instant, as they turn into something resembling wallpaper paste. Add a tablespoon of raisins or other dried fruit. You can add cinnamon, nutmeg or maple flavoring (not maple syrup). Microwave four minutes. You can add a few almonds, skim milk or low-fat soy milk. It doesn't get much faster than that for a quick, hot, nourishing breakfast.
- If cereal is not for you first thing in the morning, make a fruit smoothie with yogurt. Or have low-fat cheese and whole-grain crackers. Peanut butter spread on whole-wheat toast or a bagel fills you up.
- Search the fridge for leftovers that are tasty and nutritious. Who says you can't eat stir-fry in the morning or a slice of whole-wheat vegetarian pizza?!
Steve Reynolds, the “anti-fat pastor,” has served as senior pastor of Capital Baptist Church in Annandale, Va., since 1982. He is the author of Bod4God and Get Off the Couch. Steve launched a weight-loss ministry called “Losing to Live” in his church and nationwide after he lost more than 100 pounds. His story has been featured in local, national and international media, including Fox News, CNN, the Washington Post and the Chicago Tribune. For more information, contact losingtolive.com.