Meal Plan: Breakfast and Snacking
Below you can find part one of our suggested meal plan for those of you seeking to tone up your body. It covers breakfast and snacking. Part two covers meals and desserts.
If you are working through the Shape Up and Tone programme then nutrition is key to reaching your goal. Breakfast is the cornerstone meal of the day. So, what should you be eating?
Unless you are working out for fat loss pre-breakfast it is important to give yourself a natural energy boost in the morning. If you’re training first thing either get up early so you have to time to digest your breakfast or grab something small like a banana to fuel yourself before you train.
Good breakfast foods
- Cereal: you have to box clever (pardon the pun!) when it comes to cereals. Avoid anything with the words ‘choco’ or ‘frost’ in them. They may taste good but the high sugar levels are a disaster for your metabolism and will only provide a fast energy surge while promoting greater fat storage.
- Even many boxed cereals which claim to be healthy due to their whole wheat content are high in sugar so they may keep you satisfied for slightly longer but are still not as healthy as they promise.
- Natural sources such as oatmeal and porridge oats are the best cereal you can find. But if you need a boxed cereal in your life, include whole wheat products now and again.
- Bread: the world would be a healthier place without white flour breads. Instead go for whole wheat options such as wholemeal or granary with complex carbohydrates in them.
- Eggs and beans are a protein-high compliment to your toast but jam, honey and marmalade, although high in sugars, are fine in small amounts.
- It can be hard to resist fried bacon and sausages first thing, but they are going to do you no favours. The high fat levels will inhibit nutrient and energy absorption. Notch up an early one of your five a day with some fresh fruit, maybe with some low-fat yoghurt.
When it comes to breakfast try to steer clear of the high sugar fruit juices if you a looking to lose weight. If you like fruit juices go for 100% freshly squeezed produce. Try a 400ml protein shake (they’re actually pretty tasty!) or 300ml of milk is spot on.
Contrary to popular belief snacking nobody should be ‘above’ snacking – it’s a good way of keeping your blood sugar level and metabolism constant and is important to maintain your performance during training.
- Great snacking foods are fruits (fresh is best but dried are still okay), energy foods (cereal bars, energy drinks, protein shakes), yoghurt (low fat if possible) or whole grain foods (whole wheat cereal or wholemeal toast).
- Unsalted nuts are also an excellent source of protein and healthy monounsaturated fats. Common examples are Brazil nuts, almonds, cashews, peanuts, pistachios or walnuts.
Well, that's it for breakfast and snacking. Click here for the main meals and dessert menu.