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5 Unexpected Benefits Of Eating A Large Breakfast

5 Unexpected Benefits Of Eating A Large Breakfast

We all lead busy lives. Many of us skip breakfast in favor of getting some extra sleep or getting to the office a few minutes early. By doing so, you actually sabotage your body in a variety of ways. Skipping breakfast can lead to a variety of problems involving your weight and health, as well as your ability to focus throughout the day. Foregoing a healthy meal at the beginning of your day also negatively affects your overall mood, which can lead to undue stress and under-performance at your job and in other aspects of life.

Knowing the following, it will be hard to deny that breakfast is an essential meal that should never be skipped. Here are some benefits you’ll receive from a good breakfast.

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1. You will boost metabolism

When you’re awake, you probably rarely go 8 hours without eating. Of course, when you’re asleep, you go that entire time without eating anything at all (except spiders, according to that urban legend). During this time, your body’s metabolism slows down, only to kick back up when you awaken in the morning. You want to take advantage of this moment by eating a healthy breakfast that your body will be able to process naturally. Doing so will regulate your metabolism, and keep your body mass index steady.

2. You will stabilize your weight

Of course, with a steady BMI, your weight will also stay relatively balanced. Eating a healthy breakfast is actually a strategy to help you lose weight, as well. Because you won’t be absolutely starving come lunch time, you’ll be less likely to overeat and indulge in extra sweets and junk food. Foregoing a set breakfast will also cause you to crave snacks throughout the day. If sugary donuts are the only food available, you’ll be tempted to indulge in a less-than-healthy treat more often.

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3. You will maintain a healthy diet

There are definitely some breakfast foods that aren’t exactly healthy, so if you decide to start eating breakfast on a daily basis, make sure you’re still making nutritious choices. When I think of a healthy breakfast, I think of cereal (with milk, of course), eggs, and fruit. All of these foods have a variety of healthy vitamins and minerals within them that will help keep you energized throughout the day. One word of advice: if you choose to eat a quick bowl of cereal for breakfast, skip the Cocoa Puffs and Lucky Charms. You might as well eat an entire box of donuts instead.

4. You will be more alert, with improved concentration

When we were kids, our teachers always advised us to eat a healthy breakfast the day of a big test. They knew it would help us stay focused throughout the time we’d be sitting at our desks. Food is what energizes the body, so it makes sense that our brains will be more alert and functioning if we’re fueled up. As mentioned before, you probably go the longest without eating during the time you’re asleep. When you wake up, you’ll need to eat to stabilize your blood sugar. Neglecting to do so will result in lethargy and drowsiness. The vitamins, minerals, and fatty acids found in healthy breakfast foods have also been shown to improve brain functioning. Don’t skip out on a morning meal if you want to get a head start on all the work you have to do throughout your day.

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5. You will increase your mood

We’ve all heard the Snickers slogan: “You’re not you when you’re hungry.” It’s true. All of the other health benefits of eating breakfast on a daily basis add up to an increase in a person’s overall well-being. Maintaining a preferred weight will certainly make it easier to go about your day. Since you’re not starving by 10:00 AM, you’ll be able to get work done quickly and efficiently. And, like those Snickers commercials insinuate, people in general are much less irritable when they have a belly full of healthy food. It might be tough at first, but start waking up ten minutes earlier, and start your day off right. Your body, and your colleagues, will appreciate it.

Featured photo credit: Flickrr via farm4.staticflickr.com

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Last Updated on May 22, 2019

10 Simple Morning Exercises That Will Make You Feel Great All Day

10 Simple Morning Exercises That Will Make You Feel Great All Day

There are lots of studies that show if you do some exercise in the morning, you will be in a better mood all day long. You will have more energy and you will certainly be a better colleague, friend or partner.

One psychologist at Duke University has researched the effects of exercise on depressed patients and he has come to the conclusion that exercise has a definite role in treating this condition and has an important role in preventing people from relapsing.[1] According to the New York Times, scientists have now established that exercise also boosts your brain power.[2]

In addition, there are studies from the Appalachian State University which show that blood pressure can be reduced by doing regular morning exercise.[3]

Here are 10 simple morning exercises that will help you feel great the whole day long. You can include some of them in your morning exercise routine or do them all at home without having to enrol in a gym. Consult your doctor before starting any form of exercise routine if you are new to this.

1. Cat Camel Stretch

Stretching exercises are useful for muscle toning and also preventing arthritis. They can either be dynamic or static.

Dynamic ones such as the cat camel stretch, are particularly useful for doing other exercises in the morning. They are also beneficial at other times of the day, especially after long periods of sedentary work. This one is great for spinal flexibility and is a good warm up exercise.

Kneel down on all fours. Start by rounding your back just like a camel so that your head will try to meet your pelvis. This is the camel position. Then lower and lift your head so that your lower back is arched. This is the cat position. Do these movements slowly and smoothly. About 4 or 5 times.

Here’s a video to guide you through:

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2. Go for a Walk or a Run

This is better done outside so that you can connect with nature but running inside on a treadmill is almost as good. You can time yourself and increase length and time according to your fitness program.

Always have new goals to reach. Start with brisk walking and work up to running. At my age, I am still walking!

The health benefits are considerable. You can build stronger bones and you can help to maintain your weight.

Also, you are helping your heart to stay healthy and keeping your blood pressure low.

Learn more about the benefits of running here: 8 Benefits of Running 5 Minutes Every Day You Didn’t Know

3. Jumping Jacks

Michelle Obama is a great fan of this exercise and has become “Jumper in Chief.”[4] They are great for cardiovascular health and also for toning muscles especially the calves and the deltoids.

Stand with feet together. Jump while spreading your arms and legs. Return to first position and keep going! You can start with doing these for 1 minute and then gradually build up to the number you are comfortable with. Here’s how:

4. Abductor Side Lifts

Watch the video below to see how to do this exercise. These muscles are important because you use them everyday to run, get into the car or onto and off a bicycle. They are very important also for your core stability and prevent the pelvis from tilting.[5]

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Do about 10 to 15 raises for each side like this:

5. Balancing Table Pose

This is a classic yoga pose. It benefits the spine, balance, memory and concentration.

Start with the table pose (hands and knees). Breathe in before starting each movement. As you exhale, raise your left leg parallel to the floor as you raise the right arm, also parallel to the floor. Breathe in as you lower arm and leg. Repeat for the other side. 10 repetitions on each side is a good starting point.

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    6. Leg Squats

    Not just legs are involved but also hips and knees.

    Stand with your feet a bit further out from your hips. Arms are out in front of you. Then lower yourself as if you wanted to sit down until you reach a 90 degree angle. You can go down further if you want to. Then return to the starting position. Repeat 15 times for 2 sets for beginners.

    The benefits are that these exercises help with knee stability and can benefit the leg muscles such as quadriceps, hamstrings and calves.[6]

    7. Push Ups

    You start lying down (face down) but with your body held up at arm’s length. Your hands should be in line with your shoulders. Breathe in as you lower your body. That is fairly easy. Now, as you exhale, you have to get back up to the starting position.

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    An easier version to start with is to bend your legs at the knees so you do not have to lift your whole body.

    Beginners may take up to a month to be able to do 100 push ups so you will have to start with a very small number and gradually increase it.

    This exercise is great for strengthening the chest, shoulders and the triceps. It is a great strengthening exercise for many muscle groups. In fact, most muscles from the toes to the shoulders are being used.

    8. Bicycle Crunches

    There are numerous crunch exercises targeting the abs. The bicycle crunch is a variation where you work more muscle groups. Aim for 15 to 20 reps to start off with.

    Watch the video to see how this is done correctly:

    9. Lunges

    Stand with feet shoulder width apart. Place your hand on your hips. Take one giant step forward with the right leg. Make sure the knee does not go too far forward, that is, past your toes. The left knee will go down to almost floor level. Alternate the legs as you go on.

    Try to do a set of between 8 and 12 reps for each leg. It is important to allow for a day of rest, so this exercise should be done on alternate days, especially if you are using weights.

    This exercise is great for strengthening and toning the quadriceps, glutes and hamstrings.

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    10. Bicep Curls

    You can do this sitting down so if you spend a lot of time on the phone, this is a great exercise to do.

    Choose suitable dumbbells or another household object that you can easily hold. Sit down with the dumbbell in your hand. You need to sit forward a bit so that your triceps can lean on your thigh to give you support.

    Then bring the weighted arm up to shoulder length and then down again. Exhale as you lift the weight and inhale as you lower it.

    Here’re some important notes before you start doing this exercise:

    Try to do one or two sets of about ten repetitions for each arm and then switch arms.

    These exercises are really useful for toning the arm muscles.[7] In addition, they can strengthen and tone the brachioradialis muscle located in the forearm. These are the muscles we use to pick up things when we flex the arm at the elbow so we use these muscles countless times a day.

    You may have to build in a rest day for the heavier exercises, numbers 6–10. On the rest days, you can do gentler stretching exercises and also some walking or running.

    Morning exercise is not only a great mood booster, but will help you keep your weight down and also sleep better![8] Start including one or some of these exercises in your morning routine!

    More Articles About Exercises for Beginners

    Featured photo credit: Unsplash via unsplash.com

    Reference

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