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•What does breakfast mean?
Students should understand that breakfast is a compound word, meaning it is two words together to make one word. It consists of the words ‘break’ and ‘fast.’ Each word has several definitions. If time allows, have the students use dictionaries to find the definition of each word. Discuss the various definitions and determine which ones apply. The following definitions should be used:
Break = to separate or divide
Fast = to abstain from food; to not eat for a certain amount of time
Emphasize the importance of breakfast. As we sleep, you are fasting, but your body is still using the energy inside of it. Energy is the power or ability to be active. We give our bodies energy through food. Breakfast replenishes the energy that your body has been using up all night. During sleep, your body uses energy from the day before. When you wake up, your body is low on energy. In order to have enough energy until lunch, your body needs breakfast.
Use this analogy to emphasize the concept above: Let’s say that someone left a car with a full tank of gas in the garage overnight. However, they left the engine on, so the engine is using up all the gas the whole night, even though it is not moving. In the morning, the tank of gas will be almost empty. The car will then not be able to go very far without refueling.
Your body is like the car. Even though you are not moving while you sleep, your engine (your heart, lungs, brain and other organs) are still working and doing their jobs throughout the night. You need to refuel your body and “fill your energy tank” by eating food when you wake up.
•What are the consequences of skipping breakfast?
•You do not have enough energy, you feel tired and you fall asleep when you should be awake.
•You feel cranky, grumpy or irritable.
•Your stomach grumbles or aches.
•You feel nauseous, dizzy or faint.
•You have a hard time concentrating.
Why might some people skip breakfast?
What are ways to overcome the barriers to eating breakfast listed above?
•Set your alarm clock 15 minutes early to avoid being rushed and to give yourself ample time to eat before leaving home.
•Keep a box of granola bars (or another breakfast bar) in your locker, desk or with the teacher in case you do not have time to eat before leaving home.
•Have your lunch packed, clothes picked out and homework done before going to bed. This will save time in the morning and allow for more time to eat breakfast.
•What is a healthy breakfast?
A healthy breakfast is one that has many nutrients. Whatever students choose to eat for breakfast, whether it is a typical breakfast food or not, should be:
•Low in sugar
•High in vitamins
It is also good to aim for:
A very healthy breakfast will include:
•100% fruit juice
•A serving of fruit
Learning Activity: Breakfast Habits
Use the following worksheet to get students looking at their own breakfast habits.