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Why you should start your day with a high-protein breakfast

It’s important to get it right and we’re here to help.

THERE HAS BEEN much debate over the years about breakfast.

What type of foods to eat, how much to and when to eat?  In more recent times, skipping breakfast and intermittent fasting has been become more popular, which we will explain another day.

General view of the team having breakfast It's important to get breakfast right. Source: Dan Sheridan/INPHO

We have all heard the phrase too about eating breakfast like a king, lunch like a queen and dinner like a pauper. The word breakfast also implies that we are breaking the fast.

The importance of breakfast for anyone has to be looked at in the context of their overall nutritional status and training demands. Athletes that train in the evenings and have the rest of their nutrition dialed in may be able to manipulate their breakfast meals but lets look at a general person for today.

Breakfast is one of the first areas we tackle when it comes to nutrition. This is because it can set us up right or wrong for the day and there is so much false information out there.

The traditional ‘breakfast type’ meals that we see in every ad, television show or film is total crap. We are conditioned to believe that we can only eat a certain type of food at breakfast – be it cereals, breads and juices.

They’re actually three of the worst things we can put into our bodies in the morning. If you eat a breakfast cereal in the morning, please stop. It is full of sugar so it gives us a false energy rush in the morning that leaves us worse off and more inclined to make bad food choices later that day too.

Add some highly concentrated sugars in some juice and you have a very bad combination. We want to avoid sugar as much as possible all of the time.

Even porridge, which is a great food and a perfect training day breakfast with some nuts and berries can be a poor choice if you are going to be sitting on a desk all day.

For example, an inter-county GAA team will have a big bowl of porridge like above on the morning of a game, so if you are fueling up to sit down all day, it doesn’t make sense.

It is energy that you are taking in that you won’t use.

shutterstock_211197283 Source: Shutterstock/Paul_Brighton

We recommend starting breakfast, like every other meal, with protein first. Then you can add your carbohydrates based on the demands of that day. Your body has been working all through the night repairing and restoring your body so it needs protein when you wake.

You should also have a daily target for protein, a good starting target is 1.5g per KG of body weight per day. This means that missing protein in any of your meals will make this figure hard to reach.

Here is a high-protein breakfast recipe we recommend:

Sweet chorizo hash with poached eggs

Ingredients:

  • 4 eggs
  • 1/2 a cup of chopped onion
  • Chorizo (diced)
  • 1/2 a sweet potato (diced)
  • Coconut oil
  • Dash of vinegar

Method:

  1. Put one tablespoon of coconut oil on a non-stick frying pan and wait for it to heat up.
  2. Peel the sweet potato and cut it in half. Dice up onion, chorizo and sweet potato into tiny pieces and put it all in the pan.
  3. Leave it fry for approximately 5-8 minutes.
  4. While the mix is frying, add a small dash of vinegar to a pan of simmering water.
  5. Create a gentle whirlpool in the water to help the egg white wrap around the yolk.
  6. Slowly crack the eggs into the water. Leave to cook for three minutes.
  7. Remove with a spoon and serve on top of fried onion, chorizo and sweet potato.

Keep an eye out for another high-protein breakfast recipe tomorrow.

In association with Elite Physical Prep. Check out their websiteTwitter or Facebook for more information.

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