Healthy Breakfast: The Breakfast of Champions Break the early morning fast One of your earliest memories probably recalls being begged to eat a healthy breakfast. Along with chowing down all things green and getting a good night's sleep, chances are that advice just lies there in your consciousness. We figure that could be because it's been a while since you've been reminded exactly why eating breakfast is such a big deal. Without adding to the preaching you're exposed to daily, BeingGirl feels a responsibility to supply you with the facts behind the nagging. If you find it boring, remember it's no more so than feeling tired, unable to concentrate and behaving in the crankiest manner to everyone who crosses your path. Maybe these facts will help explain why every adult you know wants you to have some cereal, low-fat milk and a fruit each morning. The human body uses up a massive 440 calories during eight hours sleep. That's one reason why breaking the morning fast is so important. Teens skip breakfast more than any other meal. Twenty percent of girls surveyed and 12% of boys call lunch the first meal of the day. Overweight teens were more likely to cut out breakfast than teens of normal weight. Missing breakfast can lead to overeating later in the day. The biggest source of fiber is breakfast cereal. Fiber creates a full feeling and tends to be low in calories. You don't have to have what your mom is eating. Half a cheese sandwich or dinner leftovers will do fine. Your body needs to refuel after sleep. It's hungry even if you don't feel like it. Recent research reveals that missing breakfast may cause a drop in your ability to concentrate during those all-important first few periods of the day. Teens who don't eat breakfast are twice as likely to have low levels of iron in their body, a deficiency linked to poorer math scores among adolescent girls. (So that's the reason!) Twice as many girls skip breakfast as boys. Skippers were more likely to be dissatisfied with their body shape and have been on a diet to lose weight than those who ate breakfast. Six out of ten girls feel they have to lose weight, although only 10% were actually overweight. Teens who skip breakfast are more likely to eat high-fat snacks and have higher cholesterol levels than do breakfast consumers. No surprise that hungry kids, report their teachers, are more apathetic, inattentive and disruptive than kids who eat a good breakfast. Other studies have already linked improved memory, grades, school attendance, and punctuality with eating breakfast. The primary reason given for skipping breakfast is lack of time (52%), followed by not being hungry (22%), and not feeling like it (14%). Less common reasons were being on a diet, not feeling good, having no one to prepare food, and not liking the choice of breakfast foods available. During their teenage years, girls need more nutrients in their diets, especially calcium. During their growth spurt between 10 girls develop 15% of their adult height, 50% of their adult weight, and 45% of their bone structure. Including enough calcium is so very important during those years. –13, The earlier you make eating a healthy breakfast an integral part of your life, the more likely you will continue this habit into adulthood. That's why it's so important to get small children into the habit early. Teenagers who eat breakfast have much higher levels of other vitamins, and minerals such as zinc, calcium, and folic acid as well. Wondering what a healthy breakfast is? Read how to lead a healthy lifestyle at BeingGirl.com.