Not just breakfast, but nutritious breakfast matters

Not just breakfast, but  nutritious breakfast matters

A recent national survey about urban India’s breakfast habits exposed that many families opt for fried and calorie intense foods as their...

A recent national survey about urban India’s breakfast habits exposed that many families opt for fried and calorie intense foods as their breakfast. While half of Hyderabadis surveyed said they consumed healthy nuts like almonds only in winter, Mumbaikars were apt with their choices

Breakfast is the most important meal of the day. In general, many women avoid taking breakfast due to lack of time, appetite or due to work pressure. But in the present survey, almost 1,200 women in Indian cities expressed their breakfast preferences and also the trends that prevalent in eight cities in India like Hyderabad Mumbai, Chennai, Jaipur, Lucknow, Chandigarh, Bangalore and New Delhi.
“New Delhi and Chandigarh respondents favour fried puris and parathas. South India likes dosas whereas Mumbaikars prefer for cereals and nuts and remained as most nutrition conscious people” mentions the survey. The survey indicates that although women are focused on making healthy food for herself and her family, most women end up making large and heavy breakfast with fried food first thing in the morning.
Breakfast refuels the body after 8-12 hours of fasting since dinner. It provides energy to the body, muscles and brain. Even many studies revealed regular breakfast balances body weight and blood glucose, improves memory and mental performance.
Say nutritionists Dr Janaki and Sheela Krishna Swami, “Just taking breakfast regularly is not important. Making sure that the breakfast is filled with rich nuitrients and fulfills one’s dietary needs is crucial. One should put aside the high fat and high glycemic foods for breakfast. Several studies also revealed that avoiding breakfast to lose weight is a wrong notion. Skipping breakfast many times a week proved counter-productive for losing weight. It just makes you restless and tired.” When we observe the key findings of the survey, it indicates non-healthy breakfast trends are prevailed among people in everywhere.
  • 100 per cent of the respondents in New Delhi and Chandigarh and 91 per cent in Jaipur prefer fried food like parathas and aloo-puri sazbi in the morning as breakfast.
  • Mumbaikars proved themselves more health-conscious people with 94 per cent including cereals, 90 per cent including almonds and 72 per cent including fruits in their daily breakfast.
  • The southern states prefer traditional breakfast options like dosa, upma, idli etc. However, 94 per cent of women polled claimed they think of nutrition while preparing breakfast.
  • 91 per cent of respondents in Delhi believe they have a healthy breakfast while 24 per cent in Chandigarh are not sure if they are going for healthy options or not.
  • Through this survey one is realized that there is potential link between breakfast and energy levels during the day. 49 per cent give fiber rich options like almonds to their husbands and 55 per cent of the mothers give almonds to their children for a healthy day.
  • Nut consumption in Chennai is very low. Almost 84 per cent of respondents told they avoid eating nuts.
  • S In Delhi, only 39 per cent of respondents use nuts during winter and 63 per cent of the Bangaloreans include nuts in their breakfasts only when they remember or are asked for them.
  • In Hyderabad, nearly 51 per cent of the respondents believed almonds should be consumed only during winter season.
  • 98 per cent respondents in New Delhi said they never skipped the breakfast. If anyone avoids the breakfast, according to survey, they do like that because of lack of time and not feeling hungry. But the the fact is that skipping breakfast only leads us to have unhealthy snacking options during whole day.

Healthy breakfast options

1. Whole grain cereal/muesli/granola + milk (low fat milk or soya milk) + Nuts like almonds

2. Egg + whole wheat toast + Nuts like almonds

3. Nuts like almonds, seeds and fresh or dried fruits with low fat yoghurt/milk and boiled corn

4. Egg + vegetable juice + nuts like almonds + mashed potato

5. Wholegrain chapatti stuffed with vegetables with skimmed curd

6. Milk / Buttermilk + Besan/dal cheela + Nuts like almonds

How nutritious breakfast helps

  • A fibre-rich, high nutrient and antioxidant rich breakfast helps reduce the risk of several diseases
  • Low fat dairy, breakfast cereals like oats, barley, egg, sprouts along with nuts like almonds and seeds make a good choice for a healthy breakfast
  • Vitamin E and good quality fat, almonds make a nutrient dense and high satiety food
  • Fresh fruits, nuts like almonds, dried fruits, roasted grains, high nutrient bars, yoghurt, milk, cheese and paneer will make easy the breakfast when you are busy
  • A handful of almonds everyday is good for everyone. They contain heart healthy mono-unsaturated fats – a type of fat that has been shown to reduce bad cholesterol levels. They improve glycemic control and potentially improve diabetic outcomes.
  • Nuts help in preventing heart disease, cancer, osteoporosis, hypertension, obesity, asthma, delaying aging, promoting skin and hair health, vision and mental alertness.
Beat Stress By Eating Right
  • Do not skip meals.
  • Have fresh fruit, dry fruits, nuts like almonds, seeds, roasted whole grains, soups, salads, hot chocolate, almond milk or yogurt to prevent swings in blood sugar and cravings.
  • Drink plenty of fluids and stay hydrated. Green tea, jasmine tea and chamomile tea help calm the mind.
  • Choose adequate amounts of fresh fruits and vegetables.
  • Minimise intake of white flour, white rice, sweetened beverages and sugar
  • Avoid junk food and trans fat
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