Breakfast is the defending champion of the most important meal award for several reasons.? One, eating a healthy breakfast helps ensure that you get a full day's servings of fruits, vegetables and fiber. Think about it - it's hard to get five servings of anything if you're just getting started at lunchtime.
Two, you're less likely to overeat later in the day if you've started with a healthy meal, since you're far less prone to find yourself suddenly famished and/or groggy, reaching for any snack in sight or consuming disproportionately large evening meals.
Skipping breakfast is a missed opportunity to ingest key nutrients, maintain a comfortable tummy, keep workout on track and stay mentally sharp.? And, serious consequences aside, breakfast is such a lovely return to homeostasis after the night that it makes the morning feel like a grounding platform from which to start a positive day.
Sweet Potato Hash1 of 6
Photo/Recipe courtesy of CherylIsHungry
Subbing sweet potatoes for Idaho or fingerling potatoes in this dish is a delicious way to incorporate nutritionally dense complex carbohydrates into this traditional breakfast or brunch. Plus, the leafy greens up the vitamin and mineral quotient. This one-skillet wonder is a perfect cool weather recovery meal, or a great choice for a day-before fuel up.
Blueberry Protein Pancakes2 of 6
Photo/Recipe courtesy of LaurenPincusRD
These dairy and gluten-free protein pancakes are a great way to fuel up in a way that won't compromise nutrition or taste, while still meeting dietary sensitivities. In fact, with their extra egg whites, these cakes deliver more protein than traditional flapjacks, and because they are sweetened with banana versus refined sugar, you're far less prone to a mid-morning sinking spell. Plus, their gentler ingredients are likely to be easier on your tummy.
Baked Avocado Egg3 of 6
Photo/Recipe courtesy of NourishWellTravelOften
Few dishes satiate better with so little prep work than this riff on an egg in a hole. Between the monounsaturated fats in the avocado, the protein in the egg and the complex carbohydrate (not to mention potassium and a bevy of B vitamins) in the sweet potato, this is an outstanding breakfast, or would work perfectly when long-run hunger leaves you wanting to clean out the fridge.
Healing Honey Toasted Apple Cinnamon Granola4 of 6
Photo/Recipe courtesy of TheWholeTara
Granola can be a tricky food to incorporate into a healthy diet because all too often, while it seems healthy, it's really little more than a deconstructed cookie. This version is a great choice because apple and cinnamon flavors, not sugar, do the talking here. And with a whole tablespoon of cinnamon to a relatively small quantity of oats, there are likely anti-inflammatory benefits to be gained (via the spice).
Fig & Greek Yogurt Toasts with Almonds & Honey5 of 6
Photo/Recipe courtesy of FromTheAthletesKitchen
Using strained Greek yogurt in place of cheese packs a ton of lean protein and calcium into these breakfast toasts. The fat in the almonds plus carbohydrate and fiber from the bread and figs makes them a great post run recovery treat.? If figs aren't available, try these toasts with pomegranate seeds, pears or berries.