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Why breakfast matters

Is breakfast really the most important meal of the day? It’s definitely in the top three.

Eating something in the morning provides fuel for your activity in the early part of the day. Breakfast plays an important role in both blood sugar regulation and metabolic function… and the type of breakfast you choose can influence these significantly.

A newly published study has looked at how the breakfasting habits of teens can impact on their later life and health. Researchers examined the dietary habits of almost 900 kids and found, after 27 years, that the odds of developing metabolic syndrome were significantly higher (68% increase!) among those who had poor breakfast habits in their teens. The ‘poor’ breakfast habits that were linked to metabolic disease risk? Only eating or drinking something sweet in the morning OR not eating breakfast at all.

Metabolic syndrome is a combination of health conditions that include high blood pressure, high triglycerides, high blood glucose levels and abdominal obesity. It’s also a significant risk factor for subsequent development of diabetes, cardiovascular disease and stroke. Not good, in other words.

These results are not new, or in fact startling. Particularly for those of us who work in health. It’s a familiar picture that we are, unfortunately, seeing more of. For example, a large Australian study published only a few years ago demonstrated similar results after following up with 9-15 yrs olds after 20 years. This study found that those who skipped breakfast in both childhood and adulthood had a larger waist circumference, higher insulin and cholesterol.

So, in answer to the orginal question: yes, breakfast is an important meal.

And remember, it’s not just about eating ‘something’ in the morning, but making a good choice about what that meal is. Not only does a decent breakfast benefit our health now, as adults, it is incredibly important for the longterm health of our kids.

Eat more of this:

YES!

YES!

Eat less (or preferably none) of this:

NOOOOOO!

NOOOOOOO!
image via http://asweetlife.org/

Where do you and your family sit on the breakfast scale?

1. Wennberg et al 2014. Poor breakfast habits in adolescence predict the metabolic syndrome in adulthood. Public Health Nutrition. DOI: 10.1017/S1368980013003509 2. Smith A et al 2010. Skipping breakfast: longitudinal associations with cardiometabolic risk factors in the Childhood Determinants of Adult Health Study. Am J Clin Nutr 92, 1316–1325.

Spring fresh

Righto guys. It’s nearly spring. And according to the weather, it actually IS spring.

I love this time of year – crispy mornings, bright warm days, and crispy evenings. Gorgeous.

spring fresh

over our back fence

With the warmer weather, though, I’m starting to see more and more posts, articles and comments about ‘getting ready’ for summer. People prepping for having flesh on show. Which I get. But also, I want to calm this down a bit. Allow me to soap-box…

Let’s get something straight: you, my dear friends reading this, are gorgeous.

You’re lovely. You’re beautiful! You can wear what you want.

In my opinion (personal and professional), the most important thing – regardless of the season – is that you feel healthy, strong and full of beans. Because when you look after yourself, you feel good… and when you feel good, you’re comfortable in your own skin… and when you’re comfortable, well, you look your best.

True story.

So, instead of succumbing to fear and worry about bumps and bulges in the lead up to bikini season; take advantage of this beautiful change of season and let yourself enjoy the transition into warmer weather.

Here are some simple ideas on how you can make the best of it, each day:

  • Dive right into the delicious fresh fruit and veg that’s coming into season now (there are heaps of options – start here).
  • Drink water, regularly. Get in plenty of sips. Add a dash of lemon juice or apple cider vinegar if you’re game (does excellent things for digestion).
  • Enjoy herbal teas, including rooibos, lemongrass, peppermint and green tea. Hot or cold – over ice is a lovely treat when the weather’s warm.
  • Get moving. Every day. Even if it’s just a gentle stretch for 10 mins when you wake up, taking the stairs instead of the lift, or going for a stroll around the park after work.
  • Get some sunshine on your dial – enough for warm skin and rosy cheeks.
sunshine cannot be overrated

What simple things make you feel good?

Summer fresh

It’s getting warmer down here in Sydney town – I’m hardly ever wearing a cardi these days! – and it’s creeping towards scorching up in Brisbane I’m told.

With the temperature rising, people are starting to peel off the layers and show a bit more flesh.

With extra skin on show, I’m starting to hear conversations about getting a Summer Body and being Bikini Ready.

Bikini ready. What even is that?

You, my friends reading this, you are always bikini ready.

You’re lovely. You’re beautiful. You can wear what you want.

The most important thing (I think) is feeling healthy and strong and full of beans. Because when you look after yourself, you feel good… and when you feel good, you can be comfortable in your own skin… and when you’re comfy, you tend to look your best.

True story.

So rather than succumbing to fear or worry about bumps and bulges in the lead up to summer; take advantage of this lovely time of year and enjoy the transition into warmer weather.

Here’s how:

+ Get amongst the delicious fresh fruit and veg that’s coming into season now (seriously! there are so many options – suggestions here and here).

+ Drink water, regularly. You can even add dash of lemon juice or ACV if you’re game (does lovely things for digestion).

+ Enjoy herbal teas (you can have them over ice, an excellent treat on a warm day) and fresh juices.

+ Move your body daily … even if it’s just stretching for 10 mins when you wake up, or going for a mosey around the park after work.

+ Enjoy some toasty sunshine – enough to warm your skin.

That’s enough to get started. How easy does that sound?

If you can fit a bit of hugging, kissing and smiling somewhere in there too, then you’re well and truly on the right track.

Let’s drink to summery freshness

If you would like some tips specific to you on how to feel good going into summer, come and have a chat to me at Uclinic in Sydney or HealthWise in Brisbane.

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