Which Holiday Breakfast Will Save You from Overeating?

By , SparkPeople Blogger
For many of us, Christmas morning is a time to indulge in a big, leisurely breakfast that we normally wouldn't partake in on most other days of the year. But if you're not careful, a festive a.m. meal could cause you to blow through a day's worth of calories and fat before Christmas dinner! If you were to choose a special and indulgent holiday breakfast to keep you satisfied without stuffing you silly, which would you pick: One medium-size iced cinnamon roll, or a plate of two fried eggs and two strips of bacon?

The Winner: Bacon and Eggs!
You can have a hot plate of eggs and bacon for 277 calories, 21.2 grams of fat and 0 grams of sugar. (You can also use turkey bacon or veggie bacon substitute, if you'd like.) Just be sure to use a light mist of cooking spray for pan-frying, rather than spoonfuls of oil. A typical medium-size iced cinnamon roll has 310 calories, 9 grams of fat (plus 2.5 grams of trans fat), and 23 grams of sugar. Also keep in mind that, depending on the size, cinnamon rolls can vary drastically in calorie and fat content, and you could easily consume up to 1,000 calories and 30 grams of fat for a larger roll—not to mention the countless teaspoons of added sugar!

Although the plate of bacon and eggs contains more fat, it also has an ample amount of protein to keep you fuller longer (about 18 grams). The cinnamon roll will just leave you with a sugar hangover and a craving for even more sweets, causing you to reach for those Christmas cookies all day long. If it just wouldn't be Christmas without some sweet bread for breakfast, pair a scrambled egg with two thin slices of cinnamon raisin toast and a pat of butter for 276 calories,12 grams of fat, 11 grams of protein, and 10 grams of sugar.

If you're at the mercy of someone else's cooking for your Christmas breakfast, don't stress. Just make choices using the skills you've developed along your healthy lifestyle journey. Listen to your internal hunger and fullness cues instead of mindlessly munching goodies all day long. And if you do get a little (or a lot!) off track, it's just one day. After all, stressing over food isn't the point—focusing on your loved ones is!

Does your family have a traditional Christmas morning breakfast? Will you be tracking your food on Christmas?

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This is late - past Easter! Two eggs puts me over cholesterol limits for heart healthy! We have bagels from Bruegger's with cream cheese, butter options and hot chocolate. My husband went on Atkins diet and we skipped this for a year or 2 - at least the bagels, but I put them back in this year anyhow. We do try to do low carb hot chocolate for him and I have a sugar free skim milk hot cocoa and we now stop at one bagel each. Tradition is tradition! For Easter, the temptation is hot cross buns, which I make, but so far havenīt tried recently with low carb in mind. Report
Bacon and eggs are a possibility, though we'll probably also have some cranberry orange scones, too. Report
I will most likely be having eggs and bacon for my breakfast. Truthfully I probably won't be tracking any of my food that day either. I am diligent about tracking my food everyday. I know it won't hurt to take one day off. No question at all that the next day I will be back to my regular tracking and working out hard. Christmas only comes once a year! Having said all of that though I will be making a point of practicing moderation that day. Report
I am a die heart tracker... no matter what, so, yes, I will definitely track my food on Christmas day!

As for my food choice - honestly, given what was presented, I'd probably have maybe 1/3 of the cinnamon roll, 1 egg and 2 slices of turkey bacon. Report
Moderation in all things. That said, a little overeating on one day doesn't matter. It's all the other days that count. The problem is when we decided that about half our days are special days, which means we end up eating too much half the time. Report
I make pigs-in-the-blanket. Even though my kids are grown, I'm not "allowed" to fix anything else on Christmas morning. Report
I like the idea of a little of each! No one wants to go through Christmas day feeling gross due to overeating.
All things in moderation... even overindulging?! Report
This morning I saw an article on weight loss that suggests eating a wrap of sliced meat with veges inside so I will try that.Yesterday I bought some luncheon meat and never thought about a wrap just using the meat with NO bread.I love bread and have adjusted to whole wheat idea and even bought some ww thin spagetti and the husband really enjoyed it but of course he couldn't see the noodles under the sauce and he insists on white everything except for his rye bread which is still made similar to white bread.Oh well guess I will just do the best I can for both of us. Report
Mine is usually a crustless quiche packed with veggies of all sorts, strained cottage cheese and odds and ends leftovers of chicken, chopped bacon, diced shrimp, salmon or other meat protein with a cuppa flavored Kona java bean juice....yummo! Report
Poached eggs are a healthier choice Report
Managing your food intake is a daily, life time affair. If you are on weight loss program then reduce 500 calories, 200 more calories for weekend feasting. Regular exercise, good lifestyle will keep you fit. ENJOY YOUR HOLIDAY FEASTING IF YOU FOLLOW THE RULES ABOVE. Report
I am a big believer that Christmas is NOT the eating season. With that in mind I am going to be very mindful of what I eat. I am thinking about making chocolate scones and having one with an apple for breakfast then taking some over to my friend next door. she loves my scones. Report
I track everyday every meal not matter if I screw up or not. We usually go over to my daughters a couple of blocks away to watch our 7 year old grandson open his gifts and we will take something easy like his favorite doughnut (he likes the cake ones and I don't so it should be easy for me) Report
We usually do a breakfast casserole, last year was "Pigs in a Hole" from Williams Sonoma, with a few tweaks. Eggs, skim milk, veggies, fresh herbs with one small sausage link per person, made in a fritata pan that flips. Added a slice of whole wheat toast and all fruit unsw spread, with tea or coffee. Report
Bacon, an egg, AND a cinnamon roll. Christmas comes but once a year! Report
I track all meals , all days. Why should a holiday be any different than another day trying to eat healthy and keep the good habits I have acquired? I eat on the special days using the one or two spoon taste. You don't have to over load to get the taste and enjoy a food..
After losing 200 lbs, maintaining for 18 months, I know what and how to plan and eat my foods. I find not depriving myself works best. Practice portion control.
Xmas morning will be a breakfast strata, made with . ham , broccoli, eggs, baked and topped with hollandaise sauce . Same meal I had this morning. So good.!! Report
We probably will just have a normal breakfast on Christmas morning. The problem for me is when we go visit other people's homes that have all the goodies. I am just going to have to be careful not to over indulge. Have a very Merry Christmas and A Happy New Year Spark People! Report
We just finished breakfast of scrambled eggs,toast and lite spam.I usually don't eat breakfast but Hubby likes something in the morning and so we usually just have a slice of toast but today we were both a little hungry.Will go shopping this afternoon so don't want to be hungry then !I actually didn't overindulge to badly only one egg and 2 slices of lite spam and one toast not to bad but will be good for the rest of the day. Report
The eggs and bacon would keep me satiated longer, and avoid the sugar rush of the rolls.

However, on such a big day, I'll not waste calories on breakfast. Just an egg and canadian bacon with a lot of water since we eat the big feast at noon. I'll save the calories for the triple chunk chocolate chip cookies I'll be bringing for dessert. I did this 2 years ago, and the cookies turned out to be appetizers. That was perfect! I ate very little afterwards.

Merry Christmas! Report
I am going to enjoy the only 3 days out of the year (Thanksgiving, Christmas, & New Years).....I let no one dictate what I should eat. Once you begin to make a lifestyle change, it becomes engrained and embedded in your brain, so when special days come around, it will not hurt to indulge a little in what you like to eat, especially if you're good with portion controlling, there shouldn't be a problem..........I usually do the tablespoon thing during these holidays...whatever it is that I want to eat, I put of tablespoon of the foods I like when fixing my plate, and it keeps me from over indulging and it takes away the taste that I was fiending for. I'm going to always eat what I want (there are never any "taboo" foods with me). I found that when you eat, even a taste of what you are craving, the craving goes away.

I hope everyone enjoys the upcoming holiday season. Report
Thank you for a great article that confirms what I have long suspected. I tend to go out for breakfast a lot and my choice is always egg and bacon, which I dab with a napkin to remove some of the fat before I eat it. I have found that if I eat what I consider "real food" first thing in the day, I don't crave junk all day long but if I eat "junk food" which is what I consider pretty much anything that contains sugar or flour as one of the first things on the ingredient list, I crave more, more, more not only sugar but salty foods. I tend to follow sugar with salt and it's a vicious cycle that I struggle against. Also, if you "fry" eggs at home and either use spray or a non-stick skillet, you eat less fat than you do if you eat that same meal at a restaurant where the eggs COULD be cooked in meat grease.

By the way, I'm talking about my "chosen" breakfast being confirmed as a good choice. I don't always make good choices and night time grazing is my biggest problem. I manage to maintain my weight but I'd give my eye teeth to actually lose some so keep those comments and suggestions coming :) Report
Ha! I just pulled a two pans (24 rolls) of my HUGE cinnamon rolls out of the oven to take to a party. Mine have 405 cals and 15 grams of fat! (Thanks Recipe Calculator!) I will only have half of one and have already tracked it..... Report
We combine the best of both -- orange juice, bacon and scrambled eggs, German stollen (a mildly sweet yeast bread with dried fruits and almonds) and plenty of coffee. We eat this hearty breakfast about 10, in the midst of opening presents, and then don't eat again until Christmas dinner around 4. I always track, but on special days, I don't limit what I eat. I don't think any of us got overweight by eating goodies on Christmas, Thanksgiving, and a few birthdays. BTW, we almost always take a family walk while the turkey is cooking, or head outside for a quick game of frisbee. But it's part of the fun of the day, not "exercise." Report
Tradition calls for a crustless quiche or strata (tons of protein and low fat,no sugar) that can be mostly put together in advance so minimal work before popping in the oven in the morning.... plus a big fruit salad (which is also prepared day ahead and just garnished at serving time). Report
Come Christmas day, I'm going to eat whatever the heck I want without a second thought about how many calories or fat it consists of. Furthermore, I probably won't exercise either.

Haven't decided whether I'm making a turkey or a ham yet but whatever I make for breakfast or dinner, I probably won't be tracking it either.

After losing 60lbs, taking a day off from my program for holidays is certainly not going to throw me off of my weight loss journey.

Come the day after Christmas, I'll get back to tracking my meals and probably spend a few days working out a little harder and longer than I usually do. Report
If you can half it you can have it. Do 1 egg, 1 slice of bacon, and have half a cinnamon bun. Crisis averted! DON'T MAKE US MAKE UNNECCESSARY CHOICES! Oh a make your bacon on a George Foreman grill and have the real thing Turkey bacon is gross! Just don't over indulge eat soup for lunch and plan for dinner. Work out a bit on Christmas eve or on Boxing Day to help make up for any Oooopssses Report
I usually cook a semi-traditional English breakfast . And I make sure to cook some oatmeal or other hot cereal as well and usually some baked beans. Its actually not as bad as its been painted if eaten in moderation and not everyday. not to mention the protein helps to stave off hunger. Report
I dunno but every time that photo of that cinnamon roll pops up it makes me want to eat one!!!!!! Report
Yes, I'm going to track Christmas. I plan on staying in my calorie range the same way I did for Thanksgiving. I'll be having my normal breakfast of oatmeal and pumpkin. Christmas dinner will be comprised of SparkRecipes - ham, low cholesterol scalloped potatoes, peas, applesauce, and watergate salad. Can't wait until we're within a week of Christmas so that I can track everything early! Report
We've gotten in the habit of having a butter braid which is a fundraiser here. You pull it out of the freezer the night before. It rises overnight and takes 30 min. to cook in the morning. Never looked at the nutrition facts. I'm sure I could use whole grain and fresh fruit for a healthier variety. Thought provoking facts for the holidays. Thanks! Report
If we do eat a Christmas breakfast it would be part of the Christmas dinner most of the time lol. That's when ham is part of the meat. The eggs and bacon sounds good and I wouldn't need 2 eggs at all! Thanks for sharing useful information!!! Report
Eggs and bacon...sounds good to me! Report
Extremely useful info - thank you!! Report
Good article and so true about the sugar. Report
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