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Go bananas for breakfast

Mom always said breakfast was the most important meal of the day, and she was right.

Kim May, senior dietitian at the Health Education Department, said breakfast provides many benefits, including maintaining a high energy level during the day, keeping the body’s metabolism going to help maintain a healthy body weight, helping to meet nutritional needs and preventing overeating at future meals.

May also said breakfast helps focus concentration throughout the day.

“The key is to eat something — you want food,” May said. “Don’t just run to Starbucks for a cup of coffee.”

Banana muffins are a good choice for breakfast because the oatmeal in them provides protein and the bananas contain potassium.

If you don’t have time to fix muffins, there are other ways to get a healthy breakfast without ever turning on the oven. A bowl of high-fiber cereal with skim or 1 percent milk and a tablespoon of nuts is also a good choice. May suggested a cereal with at least 3 grams of fiber or more. Or, try a granola bar with at least 2 grams of fiber and a cup of yogurt.

May also encouraged creativity when it comes to breakfast. Even if you’re running late for class, there is still time for a bowl of cereal. Try putting cereal or trail mix in a plastic bag and taking it with you with some milk to drink. The usual toast can be jazzed up with peanut butter, but try whole-wheat bread instead of white.

There are some important things to avoid, like any cereal with more than 10 grams of sugar. You should also stay away from donuts, danishes and cookies. These all have too much sugar, according to May.

Just remember to eat. You may be surprised at how much better you feel.


Source: Better Homes and Gardens

Cooking time: 20 minutes
Prep time: 5 minutes

1 cup all-purpose flour
1 cup quick-cooking oatmeal
1 cup packed brown sugar
1 tablespoon baking powder
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/8 teaspoon salt
Nonstick cooking spray or shortening
1/3 cup milk
1 egg
2 tablespoon cooking oil
1 large ripe banana, sliced

1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees. In a large mixing bowl, stir together the flour, oatmeal, brown sugar, baking powder, cinnamon and salt. Set aside. Lightly coat muffin pan with cooking spray or grease with shortening.

2. In a blender, combine milk, egg and oil. Cover and blend until smooth. With blender running, add banana.

3. Pour into dry ingredients and stir until moistened. Fill muffin pans 2/3 full. Bake about 20 minutes or until a wooden toothpick inserted in center comes out clean. Makes 10 to 12.

Nutritional Information
Facts per serving
Calories, 132; total fat, 4 g; saturated fat, 1g; cholesterol, 22 mg; sodium, 162 mg; carbohydrate, 22 g; fiber, 1 g; protein, 3 g; vitamin A, 1 percent; vitamin C, 3 percent; calcium, 10 percent; iron, 5 percent.