Ordering a healthy brunch can be a tricky task to master. It’s both breakfast and lunch, so it can be rather easy to over do it and over indulge. Quantity justifications aside, having a hearty brunch is a treat that doesn’t have to be bad for you. Here are 6 tips for incorporating brunch into your plans for getting that summer bod.
1) Load up on proteins
By the time brunch rolls around, I’m typically starving. When it’s a little later in the day and the summer heat starts getting me impatient, I feel like I could eat everything in sight. When choosing the healthier options on a brunch menu, like a salad, smoothie, or toasts, it’s important to add in protein. Eggs are a classic, but other options include yogurt, peanut butter, hummus, and meats; yes, you can even include bacon. Proteins keep you the most full and are great post workout for muscle enhancement.
2) Add in the veggies
Sometimes basic carb and meat options just aren’t enough; I need a filler to add quantity and complexity to my meal. Adding in extra veggies to breakfast sandwiches, eggs benedicts, breakfast bowls, or breakfast burritos can make you feel you’re consuming way more than you actually are. Vegetables have an insane amount of fiber and vitamins that will keep you full, help you digest, and have very little calories. Plus, many brunch places won’t charge for adding in simple veggies like lettuce and tomato.
3) Keep it whole wheat/grain
Bread is a vital component of brunch and you shouldn’t have to sacrifice that. I have yet to find a brunch spot without a whole wheat bread option. Having whole wheat bread with your meal can make a world of difference. Typically, whole wheat breads are less processed and the added vitamins and trace minerals are good for heart health, diabetes, and digestion. If your brunch spot doesn’t have whole wheat or whole grain, you should probably forget the bread all together. The thing about bread is that it can be really good for you, but when it’s fresh and natural.
3) Don’t be fooled by the fruits and extra sugar
Yogurt parfaits, smoothies, and smoothie bowls are amazing and typically "safe" foods to order at a brunch place. They are filled with antioxidants, seasonal fruits, and proteins, however, they have a secret factor that could be doing harm to your summer diet plans. Added sweeteners from syrups, honeys, nut butters, granolas or even excess fruits, can rack up the calories. When ordering a smoothie or smoothie bowl try to keep it to less than 3 servings of fruit and make sure your additives are low in sugar or unsweetened.
5) Good fats are worth it
It’s an obvious diet trend to avoid fats, but good fats can be beneficial to long term health-related decisions. Fats from foods like avocados, fish, nuts, and other natural oils have omega-3 fatty acids that are good for brain health and skin health. Fats also make you feel full and add tons of flavor. Adding a drizzle of olive oil to your salad, avocado to your eggs benny, or lox to your breakfast sammy can have lasting health benefits that won’t retract the flavor.
6) Don’t waste it on the drinks
Booze and brunch go seamlessly together, but while you're working for that summer bod, the drinks can really make or break a health streak. Soft drinks, milkshakes, booze, juices, and even coffee drinks can add up to 500 calories to your meal. Save the sugar and sodium for the foods and opt for a green juice, unsweetened tea, Matcha or coffee with skim or nut milk.