Business Administration Education Guide

Monday, April 23, 2007

Driving America Past Breakfast

Usually, I don’t have time for breakfast so I end up grabbing a granola bar or just not eating till the lunch hour. Sometimes the laziness kicks in and I’ll just grab a coffee and a pastry from Starbucks. However, a recent research confirms that one of the worst habits we develop in our working lives is skipping breakfast.

Platelet (a type of blood cell that helps prevent bleeding by causing blood clots to form), can clump together inside our arteries due to cholesterol buildup in the artery lining. Platelets are the most active in the morning at the greatest frequency. Eating even a very light breakfast can help prevent the morning platelet activation that is associated with heart attacks and strokes. A study conducted at Memorial University in St. Johns, Newfoundland found that eating a light breakfast was critical in preventing the morning platelet creation.

Anther study conducted at George Washington University in Washington, D.C., found that breakfast eaters had metabolic rates 3 to 4 percent above average, while breakfast skippers had sluggish rates, below average.

The trouble is that the food industry continues to tempt consumers with ‘Dessert for Breakfast’ packaging and corporate pile drivers push for work more, better quality and earlier hours, which means most people, either skip breakfast or eat easily obtainable junk food items.

Streusel in cereal, all chocolate muffins and monster-size cinnamon rolls may seem like a great idea, but if you would think twice about having a Dove Bar for dessert, why would you eat pancakes smothered in syrup and margarine that has been previously frozen and dripping wet in syrup? You might as well eat two Dove Bars.

For the last ten years studies have consistently shown that skipping breakfast and eating trouble-free breakfast does more damage that we later wish we didn’t had. Contrary to health activist beliefs, it is our own fault. No one put a gun to our head and said

“Eat this previously frozen, reheated, easily driving friendly packaged food source, it has .2 percent of the yearly suggested vegetable / protein ingredients in it”.

Thankfully, the US Agriculture Secretary Mike Johanns has not only acknowledged that breakfast is dangerously skipped but has introduced a small but much needed breakfast awareness program into the public school system. A USDA's farm bill proposal would increase the department's purchases of fruits and vegetables for use in the National School Lunch and Breakfast Programs. This means that more than $3 billion would be used to supply healthier breakfast programs and lunch options for public school children.

Other large benefits to eating a healthy or even a somewhat healthy breakfast include

  • Boosts memory
  • Improves behavior and school grades
  • Controls weight
  • Provides fiber and vitamins

Best Cold Breakfast Cereals

My favorite recipe:

  • Pre-packaged cold cereals (my favorite Honey Bunches of Oats)
  • A carton of milk (I use rice milk) stored in the office refrigerator
  • Mix
  • Enjoy

Prep Time: Less than 1 minute

Other ideas

A batch of ricotta with the almond extract, add a different fruit or ingredient to the mix eat day
Scrambled eggs with mushrooms at home, refrigerate the night before and then heat them up at work.

Buy a package of “just add water” oatmeal, pick up a bag of bagels & margarine or jelly from the grocery store and keep them at your office for easy 1 minute breakfasts.


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