You've probably heard your entire life that breakfast is the most important meal of the day. It turns out that it's not just something your mom said to get you to eat before school: According to Rush University, when you eat breakfast your body has more fuel throughout the day. What's more, there are myriad
breakfast foods that give you energy, which means there's plenty to choose from. Christy C. Tangney, Ph.D., a clinical dietitian at Rush University Medical Center, said on the school's website that people who skip breakfast are more likely to have less energy.
"Much of the research just makes good common sense," Dr. Tangney explained. "If you start with a healthy,
satisfying meal in the morning you're less apt to nibble on less nutritious things during the day, which we often do out of hunger — you grab the first or easiest thing in front of you." I mean, seriously, who among us hasn't skipped breakfast, become ravenous at 10 a.m., and then eaten so much for lunch they felt sick afterwards? Guilty. If you want to have more energy all day long, experts recommend foods that are high in both fiber and protein to help jumpstart your morning.
Choose Whole-Grain Cereals
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A paper published in the
International Journal of Gastronomy and Food Science noted: "We should all be aiming to consume around 15 to 25 percent of our daily energy intake at breakfast." One way to do that is by choosing whole-grain cereals that are high in fiber and low in sugar, Harvard Medical School noted on its Harvard Health blog. " High-fiber, whole-grain cereals and breads can help keep your blood sugar on an even keel and avoid a midmorning energy crash. With the hundreds of types of cereal on the market, bran cereal, bran flakes, and steel-cut oatmeal are typically the healthiest bets." Ethan Miller/Getty Images News/Getty Images
Satisfy Your Hunger With A Smoothie
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Don't have time to whip up a healthy breakfast? That doesn't mean you can't still get a morning energy boost by blending a
smoothie you can drink on the go. Make sure to add a protein powder, then toss in other items like fruit, yogurt, tofu, veggies, or whatever whets your appetite. If you're not a morning person (like me), making a smoothie at night that you can drink the next morning is an ideal way to get some much-needed energy before work.
Personally, if I don't have everything I need for a smoothie, yogurt is my next best option. If you eat dairy, Healthline reported that yogurt can provide 50 percent of your daily calcium needs as well as deliver lots of other vitamins. "Yogurt provides almost every nutrient that your body needs. It is especially high in calcium, B vitamins and trace minerals," Healthline noted. It's also high in protein so it will
give you an energy boost, too. Neilson Barnard/Getty Images Entertainment/Getty Images
If you want to kill two birds with one stone, top a slice of whole-grain bread or bagel with some salmon. "One of my
favorite energy-boosting foods is salmon. Chock-full of nutrients, salmon is a food that contributes to many positive health benefits, including energy levels, thanks to B vitamins, particularly B12 which may help boost energy and fight fatigue naturally," Rima Kleiner, M.S., R.D., said on Eat This, Not That! "Additionally, salmon is one of the few natural sources of vitamin D, which may also help combat fatigue, causing you to feel more energized." De Repente / Shutterstock
It's no secret that millennials have been
shamed for their love of avocado toast. However, the joke is on the haters because having avocado atop whole-grain toast for breakfast can give you a big energy boost. "Avocado is full of fiber and healthy fats, both of which are digested slower than simple carbohydrates, and provide more sustainable energy," Chelsey Amer, M.S., R.D.N., said on Eat This, Not That!
You can eat all the energy-inducing foods you want, but if you forget to drink water you're still going to feel hella tired. This one is so obvious it's easily forgotten. Before you eat or drink anything in the morning, drink at least one
glass of water with lemon. Not convinced something so simple can boost your energy? A study published in The Journal of Clinical Endocrinology and Metabolism found that water can kick start your metabolism, which helps you keep energy levels up. In addition, water is the best way to stay hydrated.
Whether you're vegetarian, vegan, paleo, or whatever, there's a food that not only fits in with your meal plan but also provides fuel so you can start your day like a boss. And if you're anything like me, you need all the help you can get.