If you’re looking to lose weight and improve high blood pressure, the answer may be to eat a bigger breakfast and a lighter dinner, according to a February 2020 study published in the Journal of Clinical Endocrinology & Metabolism.
Researchers found that meals eaten for breakfast, regardless of how large they are, use twice the amount of energy to metabolize them than meals eaten later in the day. Thus, eating more of your calories earlier in the day will help your body burn more calories than if you were to eat a small breakfast – or none at all – and a large meal in the evening.
Still, it’s important to watch what you eat, not just when you eat. In general, eggs, fruit, and oatmeal are healthy breakfast choices that can help you feel full throughout the morning. Some other healthy breakfast options that you might not already include in your meals include the following.
Wheat germ is high in fiber and packed with nutrients, since it’s the part of the wheat kernel that houses the vitamins and minerals. Interestingly enough, this is also the part of the wheat that is discarded to make white flour and white bread.
You can sprinkle wheat germ on cereal, oatmeal, yogurt, fruits, and other breakfast foods to add extra crunch, fiber, and important nutrients to your morning meal.
If you have a sweet tooth in the morning, swap out sugary pastries for a bowl of berries. Not only do they satisfy cravings for something sweet, but they also deliver lots of essential nutrients in few calories. Plus, berries are also high in fiber, helping you feel full longer.
These bright fruits are also high in fiber and low in calories, making them an excellent addition to your breakfast. They also have a high water content, helping your body stay hydrated and feel full well into the afternoon.
In addition to being high in fiber, chia seeds are also high in protein. This helps your body stay full and keeps the levels of a hormone called ghrelin from rising. Ghrelin is responsible for making you feel hungry.
Some evidence suggests that eating chia seeds may help to lower blood sugar levels as well.
Unlike regular yogurt, Greek yogurt doesn’t contain whey – the milk protein that contains lactose. This makes Greek yogurt lower in sugar than regular yogurt, allowing you to get the benefits of its probiotics and protein content without the added sugar and calories.
Just be sure that you are buying true Greek yogurt and not “Greek-style” yogurt that still contains lactose and is higher in sugar content.
Start your day off right with a filling breakfast made up of the right foods. Look for foods that are high in fiber, protein, vitamins, and minerals, and low in sugar and refined grains. Then, have a lighter dinner in the evening to balance out the calories that you’ve added in the morning.