Beef up your breakfast

We all know breakfast is the most important meal of the day, but new research shows that eating a high protein breakfast can stop you from reaching for the dessert after dinner.


The study tested the effect that three types of breakfast (no breakfast, a high carbohydrate breakfast and a higher protein breakfast) had on hunger and overall food intake throughout the day. Both the high carbohydrate and higher protein breakfasts resulted in reduced hunger and overall food consumption over the day, compared to skipping breakfast. But, people who ate the higher protein breakfast felt fuller for longer and were less likely to snack on high fat foods in the evening.


So what does this mean for you?


"Eating breakfast of any kind will help to control your hunger throughout the day, and people who eat breakfast tend to eat less over the course of a day," Dietitian Liz Harburg said.


"Queenslanders generally eat a high carbohydrate breakfast during the week like cereal or toast and fruit, which is definitely a fantastic way to start the day. We tend to save the higher protein breakfasts like eggs for our weekend breakfasts.  It may be that we should be looking for ways to include more protein in our breakfast every day and which might stop us from reaching for the chips or cheese and crackers in the evening."


Liz's tips for including more protein at breakfast:

  • Scramble some eggs and serve with chopped tomatoes and mushrooms on wholegrain toast
  • Add a handful of nuts and seeds, and some yoghurt to your cereal or porridge
  • Serve some baked beans on wholegrain toast
  • Poach eggs either on the stovetop or in the microwave and serve on wholegrain toast with sliced avocado and tomato
  • Whip up an omelette and fill it with grated vegetables like capsicum, zucchini or tomato and some low fat cheese
  • If you are pushed for time in the morning, boil an egg or two the night before and store in the fridge. In the morning simply slice or mash your egg onto some wholegrain toast.


Remember your breakfast should just be higher in protein, and it's not recommended to only eat protein rich foods like bacon and eggs every day. It is important to also include foods like milk, yoghurt, fruit and bread for a nutritious and balanced breakfast, especially if you have diabetes.