Breakfast tips to save time and energy

Use these tips to help find time to benefit from a healthy breakfast.

You probably have heard that breakfast is the most important meal of the day. But with so many things to do in the morning, getting ourselves ready for the day, getting the kids ready for school, avoiding traffic and many other reasons, we tend to skip breakfast or simply end up preparing a light breakfast for kids that may not be a healthy breakfast.

Breakfast is an important meal for growing children and adults. The Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics established that for kids, “…eating in the morning is essential for optimal school performance and overall health. Kids (and adults) who eat breakfast tend to do better at school (and work) and have healthier weights and cholesterol levels as well”.

Here are some tips from The Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics and the USDA for a healthy and quick breakfast for your family:

1. Plan ahead: Get organized the night before. Get out a pan for pancakes or a blender for smoothies. Prepare a muffin or a waffle mix so it is ready to cook in the morning.

2. Keep it simple. On busy days, get the family going with something as quick as a bowl of whole-grain cereal with a banana.

3. Pack the breakfast to go. If there's no time to eat at home, plan a nutritious option to eat in the car or bus. Busy teens can grab a banana, a bag of trail mix and a carton of milk.

4. Follow My Plate. Focus on making healthy breakfast from all five food groups including fruits, vegetables, grains, proteins and dairy to get the nutrients you need

Visit the Michigan State University Extension for some easy and nutritious breakfast ideas, some examples include:

  • Raisins, blueberries or chopped dates with oatmeal or whole grain cereal and fat-free milk.
  • Fresh or frozen spinach, mushrooms and diced tomatoes with scrambled eggs or omelets.
  • Whole Wheat English Muffin with peanut butter and banana or strawberries
  • Whole wheat English muffin or toast with a poached egg, a slice of turkey bacon and a pineapple ring.
  • Whole-Grain Waffles and serve topped with fresh fruit
  • Whole wheat Sandwich: Toast with low-fat cheese and sliced deli ham. Add some an apple or a banana.
  • Peanut Butter and jelly Sandwich with a banana or cut strawberries 

A nutritious breakfast will give you and your family the necessary energy to start the day and stay healthy!  

Following the above tips are easy ways towards a balanced diet. If you would like to learn more about heathy lifestyles, visit USDA’s My Plate page. Michigan State University Extension offers various educational programs for adults, families, and children that focus on lifestyle changes to promote healthy eating. For more health and nutrition tips, visit MSU Extension

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