Louise McCarthy espouses the benefits of breakfast to our minds and bodies.
Set the scene: Friday morning. Roll out of bed at 10am. Late for your first lecture (again). Slept in because of Thursday night out in Temple bar, dancing until the wee hours. Your stomach isn’t feeling the best and your head is pounding. Breakfast is the last thought on your mind! Sound familiar?
Breakfast is not as much of a priority for students anymore, due to our hectic lifestyles. Most students sprint out the door, praying that they will make it in on time to UCD.
Alarmingly, they might detour into a store to purchase a calorie-laden breakfast roll (which can comprise of approximately 2000 calories). This may appeal to a vast amount of students across campus, but it is far from appealing for your health.
Not eating breakfast leads to snacking on sugary products to beat those mid-morning slumps.
Undoubtedly breakfast is the most important meal of the day. A huge amount of us simply cannot bear the thought of cooking food in the morning, so there is a big market out there selling food on-the-go. However, it is strongly advisable to stay away from such foods. They generally have hidden, unwanted calories, unbeknown to the consumer.
For those studying on a regular basis, and even more so during the exam period, breakfast is particularly significant. It provides energy and nutrients required to keep students feeling energetic throughout the day. Vitamins and minerals in a healthy breakfast certainly help to prevent disease. Simply skipping it may lead us to miss essential nutrients that we may not get in other foods.
Furthermore, not eating breakfast leads to snacking on sugary products to beat those mid-morning slumps. And snacking on sugary foods equals piling on the pounds.
The brain requires a constant supply of glucose throughout the day to maintain focus, and sugary foods simply give it a short spike. To achieve a controlled, steady delivery, breakfast is the best solution.
It is interesting to note that a number of schools have introduced breakfast programmes for their students. This encourages children to develop good eating habits – hopefully for life.
For UCD students, it is vital to bear all of these facts in mind. HealthNaturally, time and money do come into the equation, however, the advantages far outweigh the negatives. By skipping out, not only do we feel hungry throughout the morning but our brains are unable to function properly.
Tips for a good breakfast:
- Porridge is a most nutritious meal. It can be quickly prepared and it tastes delicious! Cinnamon could also be added, which adds a great flavour.
- Fruit is an excellent choice, providing several vitamins and minerals.
- Replace tea/coffee with fruit juice or a smoothie.
- Replace high Glycemic index foods and refined carbohydrates such as white bread and bagels, with low G.I foods like wholemeal brown bread and wholegrain cereals.
Low G.I foods provide a slow release of energy, which may be useful for all of the walking we do around Belfield every day.
- Include protein in meals – eggs, bananas and milk – which helps us stay fuller for longer.