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What's for break-fast?

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How do you break your fast?

As we sleep, chemicals in our bodies are at work digesting food eaten on the previous evening. By morning, we are ready to "break the fast" after a long night's sleep. The blood sugar (glucose) we need to power our muscles and brain has been depleted by the time we wake up, and breakfast is needed to replenish this power source.

If we miss the early morning meal, our body needs to start tapping our energy reserves, including what's stored in our muscles. This would make us feel tired, and increase the temptation to reach for an unhealthy pick-me-up snack later on and to overeat when we do finally eat a meal.

Fueling up with breakfast is especially important for children and adolescents, whose metabolic needs are relatively greater than adults. Yet many American children and adolescents don't eat breakfast. Health surveys have found that 20% of American children and 32% of adolescents usually miss the morning meal.

A number of studies on weight control have found that breakfast eaters are, on average, thinner than breakfast skippers. Eating some protein and fiber first thing in the morning may curb your appetite during the rest of the day.

What you eat for breakfast is very important for your health and weight. Nutritionists say a good breakfast should include some carbohydrates with fiber (whole grains, fruits, or vegetables), some lean protein sources such as eggs or yogurt, and some healthful fats such as those in nuts or salmon.

Before you come into the Y for your early morning workout, replace your depleted blood sugar levels with at least a healthy snack. After your workout make sure you supply your hard working body with a healthy meal of whole grain carbohydrates, lean protein, and healthy fats. What a great way to start your day.