The Breakfast Rewards Program is not Drew Carey's new morning show. It's what you'll get from eating a good breakfast every day: a healthier weight, more get-up-and-go and maybe more fun in the sack!
Recent research shows that a morning meal with plenty of protein (35 grams; standard fare is around 13 grams) makes it easier to control your appetite and reduce your urge to snack on sugary or fatty foods later in the day. The reason? If you don't eat when you wake up - or if you load up on sugary cereals and muffins instead of protein - your appetite-control hormones, ghrelin and leptin, can't establish their proper counter-regulatory rhythm: Now I'm hungry; Aahh! Now I'm full. And you end up starving, bingeing and overeating.
But there's one problem with this new research: It was funded by the Beef Board and the Egg Nutrition Center. So, while the researchers' conclusions were solid (add protein to your morning meal for optimal appetite control), what they didn't say, and what we'll shout from the rooftops, is "You don't need - and shouldn't eat - meat or whole eggs to get your protein fix!"
A 3-ounce serving of lox, salmon, trout, tuna or skinless chicken as a side with a chia muffin (recipes at droz.com), or oatmeal with toasted walnuts, sliced fruit and nonfat yogurt is a perfect start to your day. If you are working out (you do 10,000 steps a day, right?) you'll have plenty of energy and build muscle. An added bonus: You'll sleep better, too!