My biggest rule with breakfast: stop eating carb-only meals (jumbo bagels, I’m talking to you). They might give me a quick rush, but they’re missing the protein I need for energy in the morning. I also make sure to fit in calcium. (Experts recommend we get at 1,000 mg of calcium in our diet every day).
Cereal is a quick way to get key breakfast nutrients in one simple bowl: fiber from grains and fruit and calcium and some protein from milk. But: It’s easy to over-pour, which can triple your calorie intake and set you up for a mid-morning blood-sugar crash. If you’re a cereal lover, use this chart (and measuring cups!) to see what a true healthy cereal portion looks like. If it’s a lot smaller than you’re used to, don’t worry. The fiber from the fruit is more satisfying than it looks.
For an even more filling breakfast, add a tablespoon of your favorite chopped nuts, such as walnuts or almonds.
Reader’s Digest’s Editor in Chief Liz Vaccariello calls her latest book, Stop & Drop Diet, her easiest plan ever. The book and online course teach you how to stop eating unhealthy versions of the foods you love so you can drop up to five pounds in the first five days—and keep losing. You’ll get a mix-and-match 21-day meal plan designed for weight loss and balanced nutrition, plus hundreds of easy weight loss tips and tricks via videos, quizzes, slideshows, and other interactive tools. Learn more and buy the book and course here.