AS creatures of habits, we typically have the same breakfast every day – cereal, toast, or a croissant on the way to work.
But if you’re serious about losing a belly, breakfast is a good place to start.
A high-protein breakfast promotes weight loss in several ways.
High-protein foods can “help with weight loss by decreasing hunger and promoting a sense of satiety,” said registered dietitian Brittany Dunn.
Protein is more filling than carbs or fat, which will keep you from reaching for snacks before lunchtime.
Dunn told Eat This Not That that high-protein diets are extremely effective in weight loss because they “preserve muscle mass and prevent metabolism from decreasing.”
Protein at the first meal will also help avoid a spike in blood sugar levels and more throughout the day.
And keeping blood sugar levels balanced is hugely beneficial for weight management, experts say.
Phoebe Liebling, a Harley Street functional nutritionist, told The Sun: “It’s pretty much dictated by the first thing you put in your mouth in the morning and then it gets worse over the course of the day.”
As a general rule, Phoebe always recommends a breakfast consisting of slow-release carbohydrates with a 20 to 30g serving of protein.
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Add a small amount of fat and you have a complete and balanced meal.
Some of the more typical protein sources to eat for breakfast are eggs, smoked salmon, and sausages and bacon if you’re feeling fancy.
But read on for some breakfast examples you probably haven’t considered.
Hummus isn’t just a dip – it’s a rich sauce of plant-based protein and fiber – both of which are considered highly for weight loss.
Furthermore, being made from chickpeas, it contains all nine essential amino acids, making it a “complete” source of protein.
A 100g serving of hummus (standard half pot sold at the grocery store) contains 7-8g of protein and 226 calories.
With a slice of wholemeal toast, which contains up to 5g of protein per slice (131 calories), you are well on your way to a nutritious vegetarian breakfast.
Garnish with combinations such as tomatoes and balsamic vinegar or Mediterranean vegetables (tomatoes, olives, feta and a squeeze of lemon).
A review of hummus in the diet, published in the journal Nutrients, reported that chickpea and hummus eaters in the United States were 53% less likely to be obese.
Experts wrote: “In general, diets high in fiber, low energy density and low glycemic load and moderate in protein are believed to be particularly important for weight control.”
Ricotta is rich in protein with all the advantages of being a dairy product.
It contains something called casein, a protein that helps build muscle and is often found in protein shakes.
And, despite being a cheese, it is relatively low in calories.
A 100g serving contains 11.3g of protein but only 160 calories (even less with the fat-free version).
Its slightly tangy flavor makes it delicious with sweet honey, fruits such as peaches or berries. Top with some oats or granola for a serving of carbohydrates.
Savory options include mixing it in scrambled eggs with wholemeal toast or spread on a bagel with sliced avocado and tomato.
A study published in the British Journal of Nutrition in 2018 found that eating cottage cheese could help you lose weight even when eaten as a snack.
Participants – 10 active women in their 20s – received 30 g (about two tablespoons) of cottage cheese about an hour before bedtime.
It had a positive effect on muscle quality and metabolism, both of which could enhance weight loss.
Protein powders aren’t just for bodybuilders. It will increase your protein intake without cooking it.
Protein powders are concentrated sources of protein from animal or plant foods, such as dairy products (whey), eggs, rice or peas, making them suitable for both carnivores and vegetarians.
Studies have shown that using protein powders can aid fat loss by filling you up and reducing appetite, while also promoting muscle growth.
One scoop of powder packs the protein: A 30g serving (about one scoop) can contain up to 25g of protein and usually over 100 calories.
The protein powders, available in dozens of flavors, can be added to smoothies, mixed with yogurt or porridge, or shaken with milk or water as a breakfast side dish.
Beans on toast
Could it be better than beans on toast for breakfast?
Beans are nutritionally good for you; they contain vegetable proteins and are rich in fiber, useful for weight loss.
Baked beans are low in fat and calories, but will still provide a hearty, hearty breakfast.
Including beans and legumes in your diet can help balance blood sugar levels (which in turn keeps sugar cravings at bay).
Half a can of beans contains up to 10g of protein and only 160 calories. It is the perfect topping for wholemeal toast, with a vegetable side dish.
But watch out for the sugar content in supermarket canned beans, with half a can to one-third of your NHS daily sugar recommendation.
Choose the low-sugar versions or, if you’re feeling brave, make your own at home.
For a carbohydrate serving in the morning, consider quinoa, which is a bit like couscous in its fluffy texture.
Quinoa is a “complete protein” because it contains all nine essential amino acids, the so-called building blocks for the body.
It has been recognized by the United Nations as a superculture for its health benefits: rich in dietary fiber, phosphorus, magnesium and iron.
When it comes to losing weight, quinoa is high in fiber – adding more of these foods to your diet can help you lose weight.
It also has a lower glycemic index, which means it won’t cause blood sugar levels to rise.
Many health aficionados substitute oats with quinoa for a porridge-style breakfast featuring fresh fruit, nuts, yogurt, and honey. There are a lot of recipes online.
There’s a reason avocados are hailed as a superfood: Eating avocados twice a week can help improve overall heart health and reduce the risk of life-threatening events such as heart attack.
But it has also been shown in a number of studies to potentially drive weight loss and cut fat in half.
One study showed that eating an avocado every day can fight visceral belly fat in women, a dangerous type of fat found around the organs.
Avocados are nutrient-rich fruits that contain dietary fiber, minerals, and healthy fats (but beware: they are a high-calorie food).
With a serving of protein, the green stuff is a great savory breakfast, like avocado on toast with a poached egg.
Or toss it in a smoothie with protein powder, a banana, some berries, and spinach for a sweet, hearty breakfast.