Breakfast is the perfect time to create fresh, new, and healthy eating patterns that can carry you through the day and better inform every food choice you make. Some of the best breakfasts are chockfull of protein, complex carbohydrates, and healthy fats and will sustain you for hours. But there are also a number of popular morning foods that we’ve come to accept as part of breakfast that aren’t doing us any favors where health is concerned.
And, if you’re trying to lose weight, there are far better choices.
Here are four foods you should never have before 8am because they make you gain belly fat.
The perfect breakfast consists of foods that contains a balanced blend of nutrients that provide long-lasting fuel to help you focus, exert energy, and get through the morning with energy to spare. In order to meet those requirements, you’ll need complex carbs (not refined, simple ones that can be found in cakes and cookies), plenty of protein, and a lesser, but still, crucial component: healthy fats.
Fats have received a lot of negative attention and can be a misunderstood nutritional need.
According to the American Heart Association: “Dietary fats are essential to give your body energy and to support cell growth. They also help protect your organs and help keep your body warm. Fats help your body absorb some nutrients and produce important hormones, too. Your body definitely needs fat.”
There is a big difference among the four types of fats. Monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fats — the types found in avocados, olive oils, and nuts — are a definite “yes.”
But these four foods contain trans fats and saturated fats — both of which raise levels of bad cholesterol in the blood and can lead to weight gain.
While many brands and companies like Dunkin Donuts and Starbucks have gotten on board with the idea that trans fats are plain bad and are no longer using them in their pastries, doughnuts, and other sugary dessert breakfasts, there are still far too many packaged pastries that contain this harmful fat. Always read labels and avoid anything that says “hydrogenated oil,” which is code for trans fat.
Flavored Nondairy Creamers
What’s the harm in adding a “drop” of delicious flavored nondairy creamer to your coffee to make it richer and tastier? Sadly, most still contain trans fat and are filled with sugar. Unless you truly are adding a tiny drop, all of those not-great ingredients can add up fast.
Many margarine brands have removed trans fat, but it can still be found in both tub and stick varieties. Check labels to make sure hydrogenated oil isn’t one of the ingredients.
Frozen Breakfast Sandwiches
It’s one thing to assemble your own healthy breakfast sandwich — and another to rely on frozen breakfast sandwiches, which are fast and easy, but not always the healthiest.
According to Consumer Goods, it’s difficult to find a healthy breakfast sandwich. After surveying 16 sandwich options, CG reported: “Although the sandwiches supply plenty of protein, they are packed with sodium, low in fiber, and high in fat. As a result, we weren’t able to give any of the sandwiches a rating higher than Good for nutrition.”
It may take more time, but assembling your own sandwich is the only way to guarantee you are filling up on healthy nutrients.