How Do You Start Your Day?
It’s Monday morning and you wake with a start. Looking at the clock, you panic, realizing that you must have slept through your alarm and you’re late for class. You jump out of bed, getting ready as fast as possible before rushing out the door.
Every student has been here before, but there’s an important routine that this morning is missing: BREAKFAST. What can you do to make your morning meal as easy as possible?
Breakfast is often called the most important meal of the day— for good reason! Not only does it jump start your day, but there is a wealth of research suggesting that it’s excellent for both your mental and physical health.
Breakfast-eaters tend to be more well-rounded in all aspects of health. A morning meal can assist in healthy weight maintenance by preventing hunger pangs that lead to overeating, and can also make you more likely to fulfill daily nutrient requirements. Those who eat breakfast also have lower blood sugar levels and incidence of heart disease, particularly if their breakfast incorporates high fibre, heart-healthy grain products.
Eating a balanced breakfast not only boosts the nutritional value of your diet, but also improves cognitive performance and concentration. Sezgi, a 4th year student, said that she eats breakfast because it makes her feel more energized. “If I eat breakfast, I don’t feel hunger nagging at me all morning, so I can focus on what I need to do during the day.” The Journal of Adolescent Health agrees with her – students who arrive to class having eaten have better concentration in their morning classes and more positive reactions to academic challenges. Eating a high-energy meal upon waking boosts energy levels, attentiveness, and short term memory capacity.
While students recognize the importance of breakfast, it can be difficult to find time while balancing school work, classes, and extracurriculars. Allie, a 4th year student, says she is most productive right after she wakes up, which can mean putting off a morning meal. “If I have time to be working at home [in the morning], the first thing I want to do is get stuff done, and then by the time I eat, it’s lunch.” Getting breakfast on campus can be a great option to stay nourished and save time. Union Market has healthy choices for all dietary needs, including yogurt cups, fresh fruit, whole-wheat bagels with peanut butter, and cereals. Stop by Starbucks for a coffee, steel-cut oatmeal with fruit, or a breakfast sandwich. If you’re heading through the Health Science Building, Williams is a great option where you’ll find bagels, smoothies, and wraps. In addition, The Hospital Café is a hidden gem with its egg and toast plates, wraps, paninis, and specialty drinks—affordable and ready to eat!
Making breakfast part of your daily routine is an easy way to boost your energy & overall health so that you can always keep up with your busy student lifestyle.
- Breakfast and Adolescent Academic Performance: An Analytical Review of Recent Research
- Effect of breakfast composition on cognitive processes in elementary school children
- University of Alberta