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January 09, 2012 06:15 PM

Mission Nutrition: Tips To A Healthier Breakfast

sioux falls, sd

You've most likely heard that breakfast is the most important meal of the day, but just how important might surprise you.

Studies show that those who skip breakfast are 450 percent more likely to be obese. Women who skip breakfast also have higher levels of cholesterol and blood insulin. That's why a nutrition competition held be Avera Heart Hospital is focusing on the first meal of the day this week.

Linda Olson is trying to make a habit out of healthy eating. She's lost 40 pounds so far after suffering a heart attack and going into cardiac arrest a year ago.

"For me, it's to maintain weight loss and feel good," Olson said.

This week, Olson will join others in KELOLAND taking part in a competition known as Mission Nutrition to improve their health. This week, they're zeroing in on breakfast.

"There are many, many studies that have shown that those people who eat breakfast lose more weight and are able to manage their weight better than those who skip breakfast," Avera Heart Hospital Dietitian Joanne Shearer said.

Of course, what you eat for breakfast is important. You should focus on eating lean protein, fruits, low-fat dairy and whole grains.

"If you're talking about how to plan a breakfast, where do you want to start with planning a breakfast? I would say number one you should include some source of quality protein," Shearer said.

When looking at an array of foods, you should also opt for whole grains instead of processed carbohydrates, like Pop Tarts or donuts.

"Of course, you want to avoid the high-fat, fast food breakfasts," Shearer said.

While Olson is making strides since suffering her heart attack, she still knows there's room to improve.

"I don't really vary from the foods I eat, which that's something I think will be nice to learn too. What other options there are that are quick," Olson said.

The Mission Nutrition Competition starts Monday and lasts six weeks.  And I will be participating.  Follow along on my journey by 'liking' my KELO Casey Wonnenberg Facebook page.
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