It’s 10 a.m., and your stomach starts that familiar growl, so you’re tempted to grab a snack. Trouble is, those hunger pangs tend to come at a time when you’re busy, so you’re likely to absentmindedly reach for something quick, which often translates to something high in sugar and calories.|
The key to keeping those mid-morning growls at bay is to start the day with a smart breakfast, one that will sustain you until lunchtime. Many breakfast cereals, especially those that are sweetened or made with puffed grains like rice or corn, simply aren’t filling enough to get you through the first half of your day.
And if you skip breakfast? Forget it. You’ll be running on fumes way before lunchtime. Not only that, but you’ll miss out on a key source of fiber and vitamins that are commonly found in breakfast foods. According to the International Food Information Council, eating breakfast may boost alertness and concentration, and help reduce cholesterol. The IFIC also notes that eating whole-grain cereal with low-fat milk to start the day can help regulate insulin and digestion.
Want to maximize the benefits of that morning meal? Then think oatmeal. Here’s the deal: Oats have plenty of fiber (about 4 grams in each 1/2 cup uncooked serving) plus about 6 grams of protein. Not only will oatmeal help you feel fuller longer, but it has heart-health benefits as well. According to the Mayo Clinic, 3 grams of soluble fiber per day, the amount found in one bowl of oatmeal, can reduce the absorption of cholesterol in the bloodstream. (Click here to learn about the differences between soluble and insoluble fiber and how much total fiber you need.) Continued ›