Take a moment and think about all of the times you left the house without eating breakfast. Probably more than you can count, right? But it doesn’t have to be that way. What if we told you that there are plenty of on-the-go breakfasts that you can keep on hand that are full of the same nutritious stuff that you can get from a full breakfast?
When we created Over Easy, we were looking for a quick alternative that doesn’t slack on the nutrition factor or the taste factor. We’re talking nutty banana, deliciously rich peanut butter, the classic combo of cinnamon and crisp apple plus real, organic ingredients. We really can have it all, people!
Is Breakfast Really All That Important?
Even though we based our entire company around breakfast, that doesn’t mean that everyone else is necessarily convinced that it’s important. But these naysayers just haven’t heard the gospel truth yet: breakfast is where it’s at. Breakfast can be game-changing when it comes to both your physical and mental health.
Many of us grew up with the idea that breakfast is the most important meal of the day. While we don’t believe that breakfast is any more or less important than lunch or dinner, eating a nutritious breakfast can change the way that you attack your day.
Breakfast sets the tone for your entire day, for better or for worse. While your mind is resting overnight, your body is hard at work. It uses the energy stores that are present to perform various growth and repair functions in the body. That means we start the day at a net loss, which makes breakfast even more important as a way to replenish the body’s energy stores (as well as various vitamins and minerals like protein and calcium).
Eating breakfast also helps stabilize blood sugar, which can be important to help increase focus and concentration, as well as fend off irritability. Starting off your morning in a good mood can change the direction of your entire day, and it’s not worth it to be the cranky person in the office.
Important Components Of A Healthy Breakfast
When you’re planning on changing your routine for a healthier morning, it’s important that you consider all of the important components that that includes.
Generally speaking, a healthy breakfast is made up of four different things:
- Whole grains - Whole grains are the base component of any healthy breakfast. This can include oats or whole-grain bread and waffles. We include whole grains in breakfast because they provide the body with complex carbs, which give the body sustained fuel and will help you feel full for a much longer period of time. Yes, people, the right carbs are good.
- Lean proteins - Protein is incredibly important for the body, as it helps make and repair muscle and tissue. However, there are plenty of forms of protein out there that are actually not all that great for you. Instead of choosing an unhealthy protein like bacon, focus on finding lean protein like eggs and turkey sausage.
- Water - It’s incredibly important to start off your day well-hydrated. It aids in digestion, and drinking water right when you get up will put you on track for staying hydrated throughout the day. Dehydration can lead to headaches, nausea, decreased brain cognition, and more, so grab a glass first thing!
- Fruits and veggies - To top off any healthy, well-balanced breakfast, add a variety of fruits and vegetables. Fresh produce is preferred, but if you can’t access it, frozen produce is okay. Fruit and vegetable juices can also be substituted, but make sure that you try to stay away from any juices with added sugar.
Focusing on getting something from each category in your breakfast can help you eat healthier and can definitely be done while still taking your breakfast on-the-go.
The Dangers Of Added Refined Sugar
Many of the on-the-go-breakfast options out there contain added refined sugars, and we’ve basically been programmed to think that things that taste sweet are a special treat. Ultimately, though, sugar is addictive and can cause a whole host of health issues when consumed in large quantities.
For one, sugar is extra empty calories. As many Americans eat more calories than what is recommended daily, cutting out added calories is a great way to maintain a healthy weight. A single can of non-diet soda, for instance, comes in at between 120 and 180 calories. If you cut out soda, you’ll cut out both the excess calories as well as the sugar. Water, on the other hand, is both sugar and calorie-free—we think you can work out from tere which one your pick should be.
Sugar also contributes to the high rates of diabetes and pre-diabetes that we see in the United States. Refined sugar, especially, can cause blood glucose to spike and then crash, leading to a diabetic crisis. In diabetics, who don’t make enough of their own insulin to be able to turn that sugar into energy and move it into the bloodstream, high blood sugar can be dangerous or even potentially deadly.
In addition to diabetes, excess sugar can lead to poor overall nutrition, increase triglycerides, and tooth decay. It can also cause you to be less focused and more irritable, as well as have increased acne and skin concerns.
The dietary recommendation is that no more than 10% of your daily calories come from added sugar. This generally adds up to about 48 grams of added sugar a day, which is usually far less than what we consume. The American Heart Association cuts it back even further, to 36 grams of added sugar a day for men and 24 grams of added sugar a day for women. For perspective, that same single can of non-diet soda that we discussed above has around 40 grams of sugar on its own, so that’s gonna be a hard pass.
Breakfast bars are an absolute must-have when it comes to quick, on-the-go breakfasts. However, make sure to do your research so you don’t choose one that looks healthy but can’t actually live up to all the hype—or keep it simple and go for a bar from Over Easy.
There are plenty of breakfast bars that market themselves as healthy but are filled with gross chemicals and added sugars. They may come in bright, happy packages, but they end up being about as good for you as a candy bar.
In contrast, each of the breakfast bars that we make here at Over Easy is as well-balanced of a breakfast experience as possible. We have included clean protein (9-10 grams) from cage-free egg whites, organic oats for sustained energy (and 6+ grams of fiber), and real ingredients like peanuts, bananas, and apples. They are gluten-free, soy-free, dairy-free, and contain no refined sugar or fake flavors. When you look at other breakfast bars, we literally blow them out of the water.
We also love breakfast bars as a mid-afternoon pick me up. The same components that make a great breakfast also create the perfect snack. It’ll give you the energy you need to finish out your day without the added sugar that will cause you to crash before dinner, all wrapped up in one colorful, delicious package.
Although not nearly as easy as a breakfast bar, smoothies also make a healthy, well-balanced on-the-go breakfast, even if it requires a little bit of preparation.
With some planning, you’ll be able to create a smoothie that includes all of the essential breakfast components—whole grains, lean protein, low-fat dairy, and fruits and vegetables. Often, though, this requires protein powders, which can add a lot of expense (and sometimes sugar) to the process.
One of the best parts about smoothies is that you can whip them up the night before (or even a few nights before) and put them in the freezer. Some people even freeze them in ice cube trays so that they can just throw them in the blender in the morning and head out the door. This is a great move if you really aren’t a morning person at all.
When creating a well-balanced smoothie, start by choosing your liquid base. This can be anything from water or tea to milk, yogurt, or a milk alternative like soy, almond, or oat milk, so long as it doesn’t have added refined sugar, as well. To that, add your lean protein (generally via protein powder or a high protein yogurt), whole grains (like brain or muesli), and fresh fruits and vegetables in whatever combination you like. Blend, with or without ice, and enjoy or freeze for later.
On-the-go breakfasts don’t have to be unhealthy, and they definitely don’t have to taste bad. When you know what to look for and understand the importance of a healthy meal first thing in the morning, you can make smarter, more well-balanced choices with your diet, which will make you a morning person whether you like it or not.
Over Easy breakfast bars are a great addition to any morning routine, and they make great snacks, too! Try one out today, or try all three. Your morning (and your attitude) will thank you.