Amidst our growing consciousness for good health we find ourselves grappling for better and fitter options for our daily meals, of which, breakfast is the easiest and possibly the most effective.
Breakfast cereals have emerged as a popular item for the first meal of the day because they are easier to prepare and promise significant health benefits.
So, let’s talk about the healthiest breakfast option available to us – muesli. In its basic preparation muesli is quite healthy. After all it is all about whole oats, wheat flakes, dried fruits and nuts. However, added sugar and preservatives turn the whole deal sour by making it fattening and unhealthy.
Good news is that there are plenty of “no added sugar” options in the market. The oats and wheat flakes provide dietary fibre, which helps in fighting bad cholesterol and digestion problems. The recommended daily roughage intake is between 25 g to 38 g, of which, 100 g of muesli covers about 2.9 g to 6.9 g (depending upon the type and brand).
Muesli is an energy-dense food. Half a cup of muesli contains around 750 kJ of energy, which practically chases away any specs of drowsiness after waking up. One noteworthy point is that unneeded energy gets converted into fat. So, be careful about your carbohydrate intake.
In short, the health benefits of a bowl of muesli with added milk, fruits and seeds/nuts is a dish full of fibre, vitamins, protein, omega 3 and minerals!
Just try to avoid buying the packs with excess dried sweet fruits because they add to the calorie content heavily. Instead, add fresh fruits and seeds/nuts like apple, banana, strawberries, pear, almonds, walnuts, raisins, pumpkin seeds, flaxseed etc. and restrict your portions. Do not have more than half a cup per serving. Just because muesli is such a healthy meal, some people prepare it at home to avoid risking intake of unwanted unhealthy additives of the packaged one. It is fairly simple to prepare and you can add exactly what you want to your muesli.
A footnote on the importance of breakfast:
Skipping breakfast is the most common mistake people make while trying to lose weight. Skipping breakfast often slows metabolism over a period of time because the body gets used to fewer calories. So anytime you add it back to your routine it gets added to your system as extra calories (especially since the body is not used to it), lending evidence to the notion that breakfast makes one fat.
Just remember that you can substitute milk with yogurt, fruit juice, or even just plain water, in case it starts getting boring. All these ingredients have multiple health benefits and promote weight loss by nourishing the body and regulating metabolism.