The 10 worst foods to eat in the morning

The worst foods in the morning

You've probably heard that breakfast is the most important meal of the day.

However, this is largely a myth.

Although it may be true for some people, others do better when they skip breakfast.

Also, eating an unhealthy breakfast can be much worse than not eating at all.

A healthy breakfast includes fiber, protein and healthy fat that gives you energy and makes you feel full.

In contrast, an unhealthy breakfast can make you feel sluggish, gain weight and increase the risk of chronic diseases.

Here are the 10 worst foods you can eat in the morning.

1. Breakfast Cereals

Many people think that breakfast cereals are a nutritious option for children and adults.

The cereal packages often include health claims, such as "contains whole grains". A label may also suggest that cereal is a good source of nutrients such as vitamin A and iron.

Actually, these cereals are highly processed and contain only a small amount of whole grains. In addition, nutrients are added artificially in a process called fortification.

One study found that children who consumed a fortified cereal designed to improve immune function ended up getting sick as often as children who did not consume the cereal (1).

Breakfast cereals contain mainly refined grains (not whole) and sugar.

In fact, sugar is usually the first or second element in the list of ingredients. The higher in the list, the greater the quantity.

A 2011 report by the Environmental Working Group (EWG) examined some of the most popular breakfast cereals children consume. It was found that a 1 cup serving often contains more sugar than 3 chocolate chip cookies.

Even "nutritious" cereal options, like oatmeal-containing granola, are often loaded with sugar.

A high consumption of sugar can increase the risk of obesity, type 2 diabetes, heart disease and other chronic health conditions (2).

Bottom line: Many breakfast cereals are even higher in sugar than cookies and desserts. Adding whole grains or artificial vitamins and minerals does not make them a healthy option.

2. Pancakes and waffles

Pancakes and waffles are popular choices for weekend breakfasts at home or in restaurants.

Both pancakes and waffles contain flour, eggs, sugar and milk. However, they are cooked somewhat differently to achieve a different shape and texture.

Although they have more protein than some products for breakfast, pancakes and waffles are very rich in refined flour. Many researchers believe that refined grains such as wheat flour contribute to insulin resistance and obesity (3, 4).

In addition, pancakes and waffles are usually covered with pancake syrup, which contains high fructose corn syrup.

High fructose corn syrup can cause inflammation that drives insulin resistance, which can cause prediabetes or type 2 diabetes (5).

Pure maple syrup is a better option than pancake syrup, but it still has a high sugar content, which adds empty calories to the meal.

According to the American Heart Association, most people consume between 2 and 3 times the recommended daily upper limit for adding sugar (6).

Bottom line: The pancakes and the waffles are made of refined flour and covered with syrups with high sugar content. They can promote insulin resistance and increase the risk of obesity, type 2 diabetes and other diseases.

3. Toast With Margarine

Toast with margarine may seem like a good breakfast option, as it does not contain sugar or saturated fat.

However, this is actually an unhealthy breakfast for two reasons.

First, because the flour of most bread is refined, it provides few nutrients and little fiber.

Because it is high in refined carbohydrates and low in fiber, it can increase blood sugar levels very fast.

A high level of sugar in the blood causes a rebound hunger that causes you to eat more at the next meal, which can cause you to gain weight (7).

Second, most margarines contain trans fat, which is the most unhealthy type of fat you can eat.

Food manufacturers create trans fats by adding hydrogen to vegetable oils to make them appear more like saturated fats, which are solid at room temperature.

While studies have not shown that saturated fats cause harm, trans fats are definitely bad for you. There is a large body of evidence that trans fats are highly inflammatory and increase the risk of disease (8, 9, 10, 11).

Also note that margarine can be labeled as "trans fat free" but still contains trans fat, as long as it is less than 0.5 grams per serving (12).

Bottom line: Providing margarine increases blood sugar and insulin levels, causes rebound hunger and increases the risk of weight gain and heart disease.

4. Muffins

Despite the reputation of being healthy, most muffins are just little cakes in disguise.

They are made of refined flour, vegetable oils, eggs and sugar. The only healthy ingredient is eggs.

In addition, commercially sold muffins are often very large. One review found that a typical packaged roll exceeds the size of the standard USDA portion by 333% (13).

It is believed that the dramatic increase in portion sizes over the past 30 years plays an important role in the obesity epidemic.

Sometimes the muffins are covered with extra sugar or filled with chocolate chips or dried fruit, which further increases their sugar and calorie content.

Bottom line: The rolls are generally rich in refined flour, refined vegetable oils and sugar, all of which are very unhealthy.

5. Fruit juice

Fruit juice is one of the worst decisions you can make if you are trying to avoid hunger, weight gain and chronic diseases.

Some fruit juices on the market actually contain very little juice and are sweetened with sugar or high fructose corn syrup. High sugar levels increase the risk of obesity, metabolic syndrome, type 2 diabetes and other diseases (14, 15, 16).

Even 100% fruit juice contains a lot of sugar. The consumption of large amounts of fruit juice can have the same effects on your weight and health as drinking sugary drinks (17).

Drinking fruit juice causes your blood sugar to increase very quickly because there is no fat or fiber to decrease absorption. The resulting increase in insulin and decreased blood sugar can make you feel tired, shaky and hungry.

Bottom line: Despite the reputation of being healthy, fruit juice is very high in sugar. It actually contains a similar amount to sugary soda.

6. Toaster Cakes

Toaster cakes are a breakfast option undoubtedly quick and easy. However, its ingredients are anything but healthy.

For example, Pop cakes contain white flour, brown sugar, high fructose corn syrup and soybean oil.

The health claim "baked with real fruit" stands out on the front of the box, in an attempt to convince him that these cakes are a nutritious option for breakfast.

In addition to being high in sugar and refined flour, toast cakes only have a couple of grams of protein.

One study showed that women who ate a breakfast with 3 grams of protein and 44 grams of carbohydrates were hungrier and consumed more at lunch than women who ate a breakfast high in protein and low in carbohydrates (18).

Bottom line: Toasted pastas are high in sugar and refined carbohydrates, but have a low protein content, which can increase hunger and food intake.

7. Scones With Jam And Cream

Buns covered with jam are more like a dessert than a meal.

The buns are made by mixing refined wheat flour, butter and sugar with the desired flavors. The dough is shaped into small rounds and cooked.

Usually, they are topped with cream and jam or jelly. The end result is a sugary breakfast, high in calories and with little fiber and protein.

Studies have shown that fiber has many benefits, such as keeping your blood sugar level well controlled. It also makes you feel satisfied so you end up eating less (19).

On the other hand, eating a breakfast high in refined carbohydrates can increase your blood sugar and make you more hungry.

In one study, obese children reported feeling hungrier and less satisfied after eating a carbohydrate-rich meal than after eating a high-protein, low-carbohydrate meal. Their hunger and satiety hormones also changed (20).

Bottom line: Buns covered with cream and jam provide little nutrition other than calories. Easily digested carbohydrates and a lack of fiber can lead to hunger, which leads to an increase in food intake and weight gain.

8. Yogurt without sugary fat

A bowl of Greek yogurt, whole milk, covered with berries is a great example of a healthy breakfast.

However, a container of fruit yogurt sweetened without sugar and without fat is not.

In fact, many flavored non-fat yogurts contain more sugar than a comparable serving of ice cream.

Fat helps keep you full because it takes longer to digest than carbohydrates, and also triggers the release of the cholecystokinin hormone (CCK) (21).

Eliminating fat from dairy products and adding sugar converts a nutritious breakfast option into a food that is better suited as an occasional treatment.

Bottom line: Unsweetened, sweetened yogurt is very high in sugar and may contain more than ice cream. It also lacks the natural milk fat that can increase fullness.

9. Granola bars

Granola bars may sound like excellent breakfast options, but they are often no better than candy bars.

Although raw oats have a high fiber content, granola bars provide, on average, only 1 to 3 grams of fiber. However, they contain a lot of added sugar.

In fact, some of the most popular brands contain a combination of sugar, corn syrup and honey. Large amounts of these sugars can raise blood sugar, insulin levels and inflammation (22).

In addition to increasing their sugar content, granola bars sometimes contain chocolate chips or dried fruit.

The protein content of granola bars also tends to be low, further confirming that they are a poor choice for breakfast.

Bottom line: Granola bars generally contain several types of sugar that negatively affect blood sugar and insulin levels. They also lack protein and fiber.

10. Gluten-free processed foods for breakfast

Gluten-free diets have become very popular in recent years due to concerns about the possible negative health effects of gluten (23).

While there is no harm in avoiding gluten, eating many of the gluten-free processed foods now available can cause problems.

For example, a combination of rice, potato and tapioca flours replaces wheat flour in gluten-free bread and baked goods.

These flours have a high glycemic index, so they increase the blood sugar quickly. This increase leads to high insulin levels that can cause rebound hunger and weight gain (24).

In addition, pancakes, muffins and other gluten-free baked goods are no better than traditional wheat-based versions because of their low protein and fiber content.

Bottom line: Gluten-free packaged foods are made with flours that raise blood sugar, which can cause an increase in insulin, an increase in appetite and weight gain. They also lack protein and fiber, which contribute to fullness.

Bring the message home

Breakfast has the potential to prepare you for a day of high energy levels, stable blood sugar and control over your appetite and weight.

On the other hand, making a bad choice at breakfast can leave you hungry and strive to spend the rest of the day.

It can also increase your risk of developing health problems in the future.

If you are going to have breakfast, make it one that contains protein, healthy fats, and whole-grain fiber without processing.

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