Muffins are cake in disguise and contains little grain and fiber to get much whole grain or fiber. Big bakery muffins often have more calories than you realize. If you must buy muffin from a store, try to eat only half, and combine it with protein, like Greek yogurt. You can also make a healthy batch yourself; keep in the freezer and defrost one on chaotic mornings.
Doughnuts are breakfast food to avoid with sugar, refined carbs, and deep-fried fat. You can have doughnuts as an occasional treat on a weekend, but should not be the foundation of your weekday breakfast. If you must have it, at least pair the doughnut with protein or fat to help stabilize your blood sugar and avoid an energy crash.
- Toast with butter
A piece of bread in the toaster and spreading some butter on it can be a quick, easy breakfast, but it will make you hungry again in 45 minutes. A simple piece of toast doesn’t contain any protein. It’s better to eat it as a side with a more generous breakfast, such as a vegetable omelet.
- A glass of juice
Juice contains carbs and sugar, and you’re not balancing it out with other nutrients. Same goes for healthy-looking, cold-pressed green juices, too; just because it contains kale doesn’t make it a solid breakfast. “These often don’t have enough protein, which will speed up your hunger by mid-morning,” says Janet Helm, RD, a blogger at Nutrition Unplugged. Helm suggests taking in something with fiber, protein, and fat like an apple and peanut butter.
- Breakfast bars
Most breakfast bars are loaded with sugar and have little to no protein and fiber, says Rania Batayneh, MPH, author of The One-One-One Diet. Instead go for those that combine protein, fiber, and healthy fats such as KIND bars.
6. Store-bought smoothies
A lot of store-bought smoothies contain very little real fruits and vegetables. They’re mostly made up of sugar and high fructose corn syrup. Drinking these every morning can lead to high blood pressure and weight gain. Instead, make yourself a smoothie at home so you know the exact ingredients you’re putting into it.
- Low- or no-fiber cereals
Cereal that contains high carbohydrates and sugar and low in fiber will cause your blood sugar to increase, then quickly drop—which can lead to mid-morning cravings. Nutritionist Mitzi Dulan, RD, author of The Pinterest Diet, recommends choosing a cereal with at least 3 grams of fiber per serving. Improve the fiber further by adding berries, a sprinkle of wheat germ or flaxseed, or sliced almonds.
- Coffee deluxe
Another popular choice among people who aren’t hungry for a morning meal is coffee. But many add-ons can be carb or sugar bombs. “Many people like their coffee with added syrups, sugar, and other ingredients that can add calories without protein or fiber,” Dulan says. The caffeine boost may give you an immediate energizing jolt, but it won’t sustain you all morning.
- Frozen waffles, pancakes, or French toast
Most packets of frozen waffles, pancakes, and french toast sticks contain simple carbs, which don’t help keep you full. Look for healthier alternatives made with flaxseed and real whole grains.
- Pre-mixed oatmeal
Many pre-mixed oatmeal packets have similar ingredients to unhealthy cereal. Each packet comes with a lot of sugar and is made with instant oats, which are processed and low in fiber.