Abigail Joy Dougherty: Registered Dietitian, Nutrition Expert & Lover of Life
2015, Eggs, Healthy Breakfast, Nutrition, Nutrition Tips, Superfoods

How to Become a Morning Person! Part 1

Guest Blog- By Kelly Puryear

Hello, fabulous readers! My name is Kelly Puryear and I have been given the honor of writing a few “guest blogs” for Abigail as her intern dietetic student. I am a registered dietitian-in-training and I am finishing up my last semester as a distance dietetic student at the University of Alabama (“Roll Tide”)! I moved to Tampa in 2009 to complete my masters program in Exercise Science and now I work at a private personal training studio in South Tampa (Vitality Fitness) as a Strength and Conditioning Specialist (CSCS). I have always been passionate about fitness and nutrition and I hope to spread some of this passion to you! I hope that you are able to learn some more about nutrition from me and that you enjoy reading my blogs!

Thank you for reading 🙂

How to Become a Morning Person: Part 1


(Photo compliments of uratex.com.ph)

You may have heard that breakfast is the most important meal (and there is plenty of research to back this up) but many people  fail to start each day with a hearty breakfast.  Kellog ® conducted one of the largest surveys ever done on the subject of breakfast with 14,594 people. The results showed that while the vast majority of people feel breakfast is important, the reality of hectic mornings makes it difficult to fit the meal in every day. More than half (54 percent) of the respondents stated that they would like to eat breakfast every day. But in reality, only one-third (34 percent) actually take time to eat a morning meal. According to Continuous NHANES 2007-2010 survey results, approximately 81% of U.S. adults consume breakfast.

81% is rather good, if you ask me, but exactly what are the majority of these “breakfast eaters” choosing to eat for breakfast? Unfortunately, due to the fast-pace of today’s world, many consumers are resorting to eating breakfast at fast food restaurants, like McDonald’s, (for on-the-go eating and convenience), which may not be the best way to start your day!

To make matters worse, there are several myths about breakfast foods, which can leave you feeling dazed and confused (especially before your morning cup of coffee)! The good news is, I am here to help de-bunk the myths about breakfast and give you some pointers on how to become a morning person with a list of the top breakfast foods to “jump-start” your day and the top foods that will help calm and relax you before bed to improve your quality of sleep!

Ok, its myth-busting time!

1) Myth – “Avoid boxed cereal for breakfast”

Reality- Of course you want to avoid the sugar-coated varieties (Lucky Charms, Cinnamon Toast Crunch, Fruity Pebbles, etc…) but eating a serving of whole-grain, high-fiber, high protein, and low-sugar varieties (like Chex, Cascading Farms, and Bran Flakes) with low-fat milk (or milk replacement) can be a part of a healthy, balanced diet. In fact, an Advances in Nutrition study found that whole-grain cereal can lower cholesterol, improve bowel function, and help maintain a healthy weight. Aim for varieties with oat bran, barley, and other whole grains that are higher in protein and fiber, and look for brands with the fewest number of ingredients (the fewer ingredients, the better!). To add extra antioxidants and healthy fats to your whole-grain cereal, add a handful of blueberries and 2 tbsp raw almonds!


(Photo compliments of i.telegraph.co.uk)

2) Myth – “Eating breakfast will result in a morning ‘food coma’”

Reality – Actually, breakfast can give you more energy: In a six-week study that assigned two groups of lean adults to either eat breakfast or fast until noon and then tracked their activity levels, researchers found that breakfast eaters naturally moved around more than those who skipped breakfast. The extra activity helped breakfast eaters burn almost 500 more calories than breakfast skippers.


3) Myth – “Drinking a glass of warm milk before bed will improve sleep”

Reality- It was once thought that a glass of warm milk before bed would help you sleep better because of the hormone tryptophan, but milk and other high-protein foods actually block tryptophan’s “sleepiness-inducing effects.”


4) Myth – “Drinking a glass of wine before bed will improve sleep”

Reality – Many believe that alcohol will help them “unwind” before bed, but alcohol actually has a disruptive effect (as it is metabolized by the liver) and may impair the quality and duration of sleep.


5) Myth – “Drinking warm lemon water is healthy way to “detox” the body and control your appetite”

Reality – It’s a fact! A glass of hot lemon water before breakfast can not only help you stay hydrated but may also improve digestion and regulate appetite.


(Photo compliments of www.HealthStartsInTheKitchen.com)


6) Myth – “Avoid egg yolks because they are high in cholesterol and not a healthy breakfast item”

Reality – While eggs are high in cholesterol (212 mg per egg), they provide almost every nutrient the body needs and dietary cholesterol does not seem to have an effect on blood cholesterol. Eggs contain several nutrients (such as Vitamins A, D, E, and K, Vitamins B12 and B2, folate, calcium, selenium, zinc, choline, and phosphorus) and provide healthy omega-3 fatty acids as well as high-quality protein. EAT UP! They really are EGGCELLENT!!


So now that you know the facts from fiction, read “How to become a morning person: part 2” for a list of healthy breakfast foods that will “jump-start” your day and set you up for success!

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