By Liesbet Nel
B.Sc. Dietetics, Herbalife Wellness Coach and Busy Mom
Contact Liesbet: Liesbet.email@example.com
The old saying of
‘Breakfast like a King, Lunch like a Prince, Dinner like a Poor man’ really carries some weight. Not weight in terms of kilograms but actually in terms of savings:
- Having breakfast saves us cravings and in return gives us extra energy.
- Having Breakfast saves us kilojoules and helps us to better manage weight.
- Having Breakfast saves us feeling down and helps us to be more focused.
However in our western civilization we often get it the wrong.
- Lack of time
- Lack of creative ideas
- Lack of the right ingredients in your grocery cupboard
- Not being hungry early morning or
- Often you might be feeling hungry the whole day if you DO have breakfast. The word breakfast actually means ‘BREAK THE FAST’. Surely this makes sense! When we skip breakfast blood sugar levels drop below normal and our bodies react in a way that we experience cravings and a drop of energy during the morning – classic example of mid-morning cravings for food high in sugar or high in fat (pie and Coke; chips and chocolate).When you feel the drop of energy and cravings setting in we revert to simple carbohydrates (refined sugars) to achieve a quick surge / increase of blood sugar and to overcome the hunger craving and drop in energy. Simple carbohydrates will cause an immediate surge / increase of blood sugar and the body responds by an emission of Insulin (Hormone responsible for lowering the blood glucose levels – the insulin removes sugar from the blood and the excess is turned into fat.
This cycle could easily repeat itself 2-3 times a day. This cycle is one of the major causes for lifestyle diseases and weight management challenges.
In the morning simple carbohydrates (sugary refined cereals, white breads, rusks, muffins,) cause an immediate increase in blood sugar levels which results in a substantial emission of insulin. The insulin (hormone) acts as a carrier for glucose and helps to carry the glucose into cells. This is very important as cells get energy from the glucose being carrier into the cells – however when there is an imbalance between the amount of glucose and insulin that can carry the energy into cells our bodies react by turning the excess glucose into fat. The result is a decrease in blood sugar levels followed by a thirst for more carbs. This cycle could repeat again 2-3 time a day.
The ‘Breakfast fit for a king’ is a balanced protein based breakfast. Such a breakfast supplies our body with all the vital nutrients and energy without increasing blood sugar and insulin levels outside the normal range. It helps to keep us fuller for longer and ensures sustained energy levels. Every meal we eat should provide us with nutrition, energy and hydration. The benefits of a balanced protein breakfast are really remarkable. Balanced protein breakfast helps control cravings, increases metabolism and really assists in keeping energy levels up as our bodies then uses its own stored fat to get more energy.