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Breakfast is Important in Starting Your Day Off Right

Although this quick bread has a lot of ingredients, it is fast and easy to prepare. Make it up ahead of time and keep in the refrigerator. It is sure to become a family favorite.

TEXARKANA, Ark. –

“I don’t have time,” “I’m watching my weight,” I’m not hungry when I get up.” If you are a breakfast skipper, which of these excuses do you use?

Believe it or not, breakfast is as important in getting your day started off right as a good night’s sleep.

Think about it. If your body has been deprived of food for 8 or more hours, it’s a good idea to feed it. It’s also important to feed it something healthy.

Breakfast should supply one-fourth to one-third of the day’s calories and nutrients. Calories come from protein and fat in meat, eggs, milk and cheese; and from complex carbohydrates in breads and cereals. Fruits supply calories in the form of simple sugars. These foods are also good sources of vitamins, minerals, and dietary fiber.

Studies indicate that people who eat a good breakfast consume more vitamins and minerals, and less fat and cholesterol, than people who don’t eat breakfast.

 Research has shown a correlation between eating breakfast and learning. Children who eat breakfast have better concentration, problem-solving skills, and hand-eye coordination. 

Breakfast doesn’t have to be the big meal it used to be. There are quick choices for breakfast, including whole grains, fruit and low-fat dairy products. 

The whole grains and fruit contain high amounts of fiber, which tend to fill you up faster and will delay symptoms of hunger for hours. 

When choosing a dry cereal, look for whole grain with 3 to 5 grams of fiber and make sure sugar doesn’t appear as one of the first three ingredients. Sugar may be listed with a word that ends in “ose,” which refers to some form of sugar in the product. Some of the sugar-coated or frosted cereals may have as much as 2-3 teaspoons of sugar for a 1 ounce serving.

Oatmeal is another high fiber choice, and with the instant oatmeal on the market today, it can be prepared in fewer than 2 minutes. Pair it with fresh fruit and milk and you have a healthy breakfast.

A traditional breakfast isn’t always necessary, as long as it is nutritious and well balanced.  The combinations are limited only by your creativity and imagination. Some quick and healthy suggestions include:

Egg salad sandwich. Eggs are full of nutrients and when served on whole grain bread you are getting fiber and protein that will fill you up.

Mash a banana into peanut butter and spread over whole wheat toast in fewer than 5 minutes. This makes eating on the run easy.

Keep whole grain muffins in the freezer and warm them up in the microwave.

Fruit kebabs are a great make-ahead breakfast. Put fruits on a kebab stick, coffee stirrer, or toothpick.  Mix eight ounces of cream cheese with eight ounces of crushed unsweetened pineapple and one teaspoon honey and use for dipping.

Set out your breakfast items-cups, bowls, utensils, non-perishables like cereal-the night before to save time the next morning.

Add granola, or other high fiber cereal to the top of yogurt. It makes an ideal fast food that you can eat on the run.

Don’t forget those non-traditional breakfast foods as well. Last nights refrigerated pizza will get you off to a good start.

As your busy day begins, take a few minutes to include breakfast into your morning schedule.  It will give you that extra brain power that you need to make it through the day.

For more information, contact the Miller County Extension Office, 870-779-3609 or visit us in room 215 at the Miller County Courthouse. We're online at cdue@uaex.edu, on Facebook at UAEXMillerCountyFCS, on Twitter @MillerCountyFCS or on the web at uaex.edu/Miller.

This is one of my favorite quick bread recipes. Although the ingredient list is long, it is fast and easy to prepare. Make it up ahead of time and keep in the refrigerator. Simply slice, warm and eat.

Aloha Quick Bread

1/2 cup butter or margarine                   

1 cup sugar                                                                 

2 eggs                                                             

1 cup mashed ripe bananas, (about 2 medium)                                             

1/4 cup milk                                                   

1 tablespoon grated orange peel                                

1 teaspoon vanilla extract                                                      

1/2 teaspoon almond extract

2 cups all-purpose flour

1 teaspoon baking soda

1/2 teaspoon salt

1 cup flaked coconut

1/2 cup chopped nuts

1/2 cup crushed pineapple, drained

 

In a mixing bowl, cream butter and sugar. Add the eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Beat in banana, milk, orange peel, and extracts. Combine flour, baking soda, and salt; add to the creamed mixture just until moistened. Fold in the coconut, nuts, and pineapple. Transfer to a greased 9x5x3-inch loaf pan. Bake at 350°F for 1 hour and 20 minutes or until toothpick inserted near the center comes out clean. Cool for 10 minutes before removing from pan to wire rack. Yield: 1 loaf.

By Carla Due
County Extension Agent - FCS
The Cooperative Extension Service
U of A System Division of Agriculture

Media Contact: Carla Due
County Extension Agent - FCS
U of A Division of Agriculture
Cooperative Extension Service
400 Laurel Street, Suite 215 Texarkana AR 71854
(870) 779-3609
cdue@uaex.edu

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