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March 19, 2013

Older Adults: Get Your Best Start with Breakfast

Living well into your retirement years means taking good care of yourself — body and soul. It may seem simple, but dietitians agree good health starts with breakfast. If you’'re skipping breakfast or if you’'re bored with your daily breakfast routine, you’'re not getting everything you could out of the most important meal of the day. 

March is National Nutrition Month, so it is the perfect time to try these tips to improve your morning nutrition and get a better start to your day. 

Why breakfast? 

Your body has gone all night without food. When you wake up in the morning, you need to re-energize with proper nutrition. Getting a good breakfast can improve your concentration, productivity, creativity, problem solving, and even your hand-eye coordination, according to Kendal at Oberlin dietitian Katie Hoover. So, no matter how you plan to spend your morning, you can benefit from a good breakfast.

How to Make a Better Breakfast

  • Find balance: Your body is best powered by a combination of protein, carbohydrates, good fats, and fiber. Breakfasts that combine these ingredients will keep you feeling full and energized through your day. Try toasting a piece of whole-grain bread with apple slices and cheddar cheese for a delicious and easy breakfast. 
  • Go nutty for toppings: Bored with your oatmeal or cottage cheese? Find a way to jazz them up while adding nutritional balance to your breakfast. Top your oatmeal with a sprinkle of walnuts or sesame seeds. Just lightly toast them in a pan and toss them in for extra protein. For your cottage cheese or yogurt, try topping with berries and a touch of honey for a delicious twist. 
  • Set the space: Breakfast time should be “you” time. It’s your chance to get started on the right foot before you encounter the stresses of the day. Dana Jacobi, author of “12 Best Foods Cookbook,” suggests getting your breakfast space ready before you go to bed. "To feed your eyes and set yourself up for smart choices, use a nice bowl of fruit as a centerpiece for the table," she says. When you wake up, open your curtains and let the sunshine in. Enjoying the daylight during your morning meal will reset your internal clock and make you feel more awake. 
  • Turn up the tunes: If you’'re anxious about your tasks for the day, try playing some relaxing music while you’'re preparing and eating your breakfast. Researchers at the University at Buffalo recently found people who listen to music feel less anxious and are better able to cope with impending surgery. 

Want to know more about healthy living and wellness during retirement? Download our free guide, “Remaining Active: How to Begin a Regular Exercise Routine


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