Nutrition: The morning matters

The early bird gets the worm

By Hannah Dentry, WAC Dietitian

Are you a morning person? Do you tend to run through your to-do list before noon? If so, your body thanks you! Recent research shows that people who do activities in the morning and eat earlier in the day have lower BMI (the ratio of your weight to your height) than people who sleep in, eat later in the evening, and have later bedtimes.

I will be the first to admit that it can be tough to roll out of bed in the morning. It takes some serious strategizing to get me up and moving. Here are a few changes you can make to your daily routine to help you reach your wellness goals:

Meal prep your breakfast

A little planning goes a long way. Set aside an hour during the weekend to prep delicious breakfasts that will make leaving your bed much easier on the workday. I like to make overnight chia seed porridge or a big frittata with veggies that I heat up throughout the week for breakfast.

Know your bedtime

Sleep deprivation can make it difficult to differentiate between hunger and exhaustion. This makes managing our weight a losing battle. Try to stick to a set bedtime and avoid checking social media or watching TV right before bed. Deep breathing, stretching, and a little meditation are great ways to wind down before your head hits the pillow.

Limit nighttime decision making

Decision fatigue is real! By the end of the day, our brains have maxed out on countless imperceptible decisions and willpower is almost nonexistent. That’s why impulsive food decisions and overeating are so common at night. Have a game plan for dinner and keep a healthy nighttime snack on hand like 72 percent (or higher) dark chocolate.

—Posted October 17, 2018

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