(Family Features) It's easier than ever to provide great-tasting, nutritious, affordable and ready-to-eat breakfast options for you and your family. Try these convenient tips to make sure you have a nutritious breakfast before everyone rushes out the door.
"Cereal is a convenient way for busy families to start the morning," said Lisa Sanders, Ph.D., registered dietitian and director of Global Nutrition and Scientific Affairs at Kellogg. "In fact, nine out of ten moms agree that cereal is a convenient breakfast choice. In addition, research shows sharing three or more family meals per week can help children have healthier eating habits."
Here are simple ways to fit a cereal breakfast into your day:
Fill the pantry with quick options
For the many busy families who feel they don't have time for breakfast, choose a convenient breakfast option. Try stocking up on fresh fruit and ready-to-eat cereals, for example, such as those from Kellogg's, which come in several varieties. Almost everyone can make a bowl of cereal. It's a great way to get kids involved during family breakfasts. For families with milk allergies or those who prefer non-dairy options, give cereal an extra boost of nutritious flavor by pairing it with almond or soy milk and fresh fruit. For more breakfast ideas, visit www.kelloggs.com.
Prepare the night before
Before you turn the lights off for bed, be ready for the next day with a virtual buffet of ready-to-eat breakfast options. Set out your cereal boxes, prepare hard-boiled eggs or slice fruit for a nutritious meal. With preparation, you can eat quickly and get the nutrients you need to start your day.
Choose wholesome, nutrient-packed foods
In a world of fast food and large portion sizes, not all breakfasts are created equal. When grocery shopping, make sure the breakfast items you place in the cart are nutritious ones. The average calorie count for a bacon, eggs and toast breakfast is 309 calories, while a breakfast of skim milk and cereal is about 150 calories. And, for 150 calories, cereal and skim milk can provide a powerhouse of nutrients that you may not be getting enough of, including fiber, calcium, vitamin D and potassium. Studies also show that children and adults who eat cereal regularly tend to have lower BMIs than those who do not.
Create new options:
Choosing a cereal and milk breakfast is one of the easiest ways to get nutrients to help start to the day. For variety, try some of the simple suggestions below. Mix and match to fit your family's tastes.
Whole grain, higher fiber cereal + yogurt + mixed berries = breakfast parfait
Whole grain, higher fiber cereal + Ricotta cheese + nuts, raisins & cinnamon = mid-morning protein snack
"Starting your day with a cereal breakfast is one of the smartest things you can do," said Sanders, the author of numerous studies examining the nutritive benefits of cereal and fiber. "People who regularly eat cereal for breakfast also tend to have higher nutrient intakes and weigh less than those who skip breakfast or choose other breakfast options."
Sanders recommends fiber and whole grains as a good foundation upon which to build your bowl, adding low fat milk or yogurt which deliver protein, vitamin D, calcium and other nutrients. Add fruit to make a bowl even more delicious and nutritious. For more ways to build a better breakfast, visit http://www.kelloggs.com/en_US/choose-my-bowl.html.
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