LiveSmart: Start Your Day Off Right with the Power of Breakfast

[This piece was written by Alexandra Cervini, MS, RD, CDN, Lead Dietitian for Samaritan Hospital, St. Peter’s Health Partners.]

Nothing says “Good Morning!” like a good breakfast. Whether you have something big or small, breakfast is extremely important to get the entire family started and ready for the day, whether it be at work or at school.

Studies have shown that starting the day with breakfast leads to an increased daily intake of calcium, fiber, fruits and vegetables, all of which can help maintain a healthy weight, lead to higher performance in school for children and, in general, better overall health. But, despite these benefits, the same studies reveal that many people still choose to skip breakfast in the United States.

Here are some tips to make eating a healthy breakfast easy and simple:

  • Outline a breakfast meal plan before you go shopping, to help you make smart and healthy choices.
  • Plan out your breakfast the night before, or prepare meals ahead in order to save time in the morning.
  • Alternate breakfast ideas to ensure your options do not get boring.
  • If you are grabbing breakfast on the go, choose a healthier option. Look at the nutritional information, or check the menu online, in order to make an informed decision.

Whatever mindful option you choose for breakfast, trust you are doing the right thing by kick-starting your day. Cutting out breakfast or only drinking a cup of coffee in the morning in order to cut calories is the wrong choice, as studies have shown that eating breakfast reduces overeating throughout the day.

Now, I’m not a morning person, myself, so below are two of my favorite go-to, quick and easy, make-ahead breakfast recipes. So what are you waiting for? Start your day out right with some nutritious and delicious eats!

Dark Chocolate Peanut Butter Overnight Oats
½ Cup Non-fat Milk (or milk of your choice)

½ Cup Old-Fashioned Rolled Oats

1 Teaspoon Chia Seeds

1 Tablespoon Peanut Butter (or nut butter of your choice)

1 Tablespoon Dark Chocolate Morsels

1 Teaspoon Vanilla Extract


  1. Add the desired amounts of milk, oats, chia seeds, vanilla extract, peanut butter, and chocolate chips to a jar or container and give them a good stir.
  2. Refrigerate overnight or for at least 5 hours.
  3. Grab from the fridge, go and enjoy!

Tip: For extra protein, substitute some Greek yogurt instead of the full ½ cup of milk.


Easy Turkey Sausage & Broccoli Egg White Bake
1 Box of Pre-cooked Frozen Turkey Sausage Links (Cooked and cut into small pieces)

12 oz Steamer Broccoli Florets Bag (Cooked and cut into small pieces)

½ Cup Cheddar Cheese

32 oz Liquid Egg Whites

1 teaspoon Garlic Powder

Cooking spray

Salt/Pepper to taste


  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit
  2. Cook pre-cooked sausage and broccoli per package, and chop into small pieces
  3. Add sausage and broccoli to a greased, 9 x 9 pan
  4. Add liquid egg whites
  5. Sprinkle cheese, garlic powder, salt and pepper on top
  6. Cook egg bake until eggs are set, 20-25 minutes.
  7. Cut and serve, or keep in fridge for breakfast throughout the week!

Tip: Use any kind of vegetables for egg bake. Often times, I use leftover vegetables from dinner.

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