Hands down, breakfast is the most important meal of the day. After you’ve “fasted” (aka, slept) all night, your body needs the calories to get all your systems up and going.
From glucose for energy to protein for cell repair and growth, what you eat when you break your fast can set your day, and it’s particularly crucial on a business trip.
With the right breakfast in your belly, you’ll have healthy energy pushing you through your meetings. Many corporate hotels, like those in this article by Hotel Engine, provide continental breakfasts early for the busy professional. Yet, it’s tempting to skip the meal in favor of a cup of coffee on the run.
No matter how rushed you are, there’s always time for a nutritional first meal of the day. Try these four simple and quick travel breakfast ideas, and you’ll feel the difference in your energy and clarity.
1. Instant Oatmeal
Does your hotel room have a microwave, or is there one in the lobby? If so, instant oatmeal with a few additional toppings is on the menu.
Oatmeal is a rare food with almost all the nutrients you need in one serving. Steel-cut oats are the healthiest since they are the least processed, but any oatmeal will do.
Overall, this food gives you the calories, protein, carbs, fat, and fiber you need to get through the day, with very little natural sugar. If you’re not an oatmeal fan, try adding butter and low-sugar syrup to the mixture, then topping it off with berries, bananas, pecans, and cinnamon.
The whole meal can be made and eaten in less than five minutes, even while your coffee is brewing.
Heading to your favorite coffee or donut place for a quick meal? Consider swapping out your sugar-laden normal order for a healthy smoothie.
Smoothies are full of fruits, which are naturally sugar-filled. The difference is that, unlike synthetic sugars in sweetened coffee and donuts, the flavors in a smoothie give you all-day energy without the crash.
The typical smoothie bar uses nutritious ingredients like almond butter in place of their less healthy counterparts. You get all the flavor and none of the guilt. If possible, order ahead from the establishment’s app and skip the line.
Use the fridge in your room to prepare your yogurt goodies. Start with your favorite brand and flavor. Greek yogurt is trending as one of the healthiest varieties.
Next, doctor your bowl or cup using extras that will fill you up and improve the taste and texture of your meal. You’ll see that many stories have dessert-flavored yogurt with M&Ms and other goodies. Try to avoid these because you don’t want the crash that comes with them to keep you from focusing in the middle of a busy day.
Rather than artificial sweets, mix these yummy, healthy ingredients into your yogurt:
- Pomegranate and chia seeds
- Peanut butter (regular or powdered)
- Berries and bananas
- Dark chocolate shavings (dark chocolate is healthier than the milk chocolate options)
Another good extra is a date. If you’ve never tried these buttery marvels yet, don’t count them out until you do. Pitted and mixed with yogurt, you get a rich, gooey, sweet, and healthy breakfast.
Normally, we’d suggest shying away from carb-laden foods at breakfast. But some muffins are at the top of the list of healthy, fast, and tasty nutritional foods.
Be cautious about where you get your muffins from. Fast-food establishments often use a lot of unnecessary sugar and preservatives in theirs. If you can, make your own and bring them on your trip, or buy from healthier chains.
As good as they look, avoid muffins that seem more like desserts than breakfast, such as those with chocolate chips. Good choices include, but aren’t limited to:
- Cranberry orange
- Banana nut
- Apple cinnamon
They’re easy to eat on the go and filling. Heat them in the microwave for a few seconds and top with almond butter for an extra tasty meal you’ll be glad you didn’t skip.
Whether you’re the perky early morning riser or you would rather sleep until the last second, breakfast is one meal you shouldn’t miss.
Relax with a paper or online newspaper and a cup of coffee over the hotel’s free continental breakfast if you have time. If not, head to your local breakfast joint, or make your own dish from one of these four must-try choices.