Your diet will make or break your attempts to get the body you want. Getting your nutrition right, mastering portion sizes and calories, and understanding the macronutrients you need are all hugely important if your goal is fat loss. Having a diet plan, therefore, is key – but sticking to that diet plan is even more critical to your success. If Ultimate Performance has learned anything from training thousands of clients and helping them achieve stunning body transformation, it’s that you need to find out what works for you. Find foods you enjoy, that are easy to make and that fit into your diet and you will massively increase the likelihood of success.
A quality breakfast is a big part of this – they don’t call it ‘the most important meal of the day’ for nothing. By breakfast, we don’t mean two pieces of toast and a coffee with five sugars. If you’re going to eat a breakfast that will help you optimise your body composition, it should be high in protein.
- Improves mood, focus and memory
- Makes you less hungry throughout the morning
- Balances your blood sugars and helps kill cravings
- Improved energy
- Means you will make better food choices
- Increased strength and muscle mass
Now we know protein is essential for breakfast, but what about fats and carbs? This comes down to your personal preferences and fitness goals – but for the average person, who has a busy lifestyle, a combination of protein and healthy fats for breakfast is optimal.
Why protein and fat is best for breakfast:
- Improved focus and productivity early in the morning
- It may increase fat loss due to longer periods of reduced insulin release
- There is a theory around ‘metabolic flexibility’, which refers to the body’s ability to switch efficiently between fuel sources. By focusing on protein and fat in the morning, your metabolism may preferentially burn more fat for fuel later in the day.
- More practically speaking, if you’re on limited carbs, you may want to save them for the end of the day where you can enjoy them with dinner
But if you’re one of the lucky people who really feel good and energised all day after eating a bowl of porridge, then sure! Include this in your breakfast.
However, the following five options are based on protein and fats and are proven to help get results with thousands of UP clients.
1: Breakfast of Champions
Meat for breakfast is king! If you’re not put off by the thought of eating a chunk of meat first thing in the morning, there are some great options you can prepare to get in the best shape of your life. Frying a steak off with some greens alongside some nutrient-dense nuts is the best way to start the day.
Here are a few ideas…
- Lean cut of red meat or oily fish like fillet steak, venison or salmon
- Small handful of nuts – e.g. almonds, walnuts, cashews or pecans
- Handful of greens e.g. spinach, green beans, kale.
Try this Steak and Peanut Butter Skewers for a tasty way to get meats and nuts in your breakfast
2. The Quick Fix
Sometimes getting up and cooking a full steak breakfast isn’t an option – whether you’ve woken up late, or you have to be in the gym to train by 6 or 7am, Not to worry, there’s a quick fix for getting your protein and fats in when you’re pushed for time and need a quick-digesting meal…
- 1-2 scoops of whey isolate
- 1-2 tbsp almond butter
You could also try this protein and nut butter mocha shake, incorporating your morning coffee into this tasty recipe for an extra caffeinated kick.
Eggs are a staple in many breakfasts. They are so versatile, so there are lots of different ways to prepare them so you never get bored.
Whether they’re poached, scrambled, fried or mixed up into a delicious omelette, you can guarantee you’ll have an interesting and delicious breakfast.
Depending on your calorie intake, you can either eat eggs alone, or along with something like smoked salmon or some lean red meat.
Try this delicious Pizza Omelette recipe for something a little different at breakfast time.
4. Greek Yoghurt
This is a favourite choice for many clients at UP. Greek yoghurt is particularly popular for anyone who likes to add a bit of creamy texture to their breakfast and kill off any sweet cravings early in the day. You can either go full fat or 0% fat depending on your daily calorie intake, but the main thing is you’re buying quality Greek yoghurt with no sugars added. You can get between 20-30g of protein along with some good fats and a small amount of carbs from 200-300g of yoghurt. It goes really well when mixed with whey protein powder and/or nut butters which gives you a bit more protein and healthy fats.
Also, try combining Greek yoghurt with a scoop of whey protein and a tablespoon of almond butter. Mix well for a deliciously simple breakfast, that works well with a variety of berries or seeds on top. This is also great with oats, if you are allowed carbohydrates at breakfast, on your meal plan.
5. The Vegan Option
If you’re living meat-free or on a plant-based diet, you can still get a breakfast that is high in protein and healthy fats. A good place to start is by replicating the ‘Breakfast of Champions’, but just replacing the lean meat with some high quality, fermented tofu for your protein.
You can make a vegan ‘scramble’ like this…
- 120g Tofu
- 1 tsp turmeric
- ½ tsp chilli powder
- ½ red pepper, diced
- 75g mushrooms, sliced
- 50g spinach
- 1 round tomato, diced
- pinch of salt and pepper
- Crumble the tofu into a bowl and mix in the turmeric, chilli powder, salt and black pepper.
- Heat a non-stick pan and add the vegetables except for the spinach, and tofu.
- Cook together for 5-10 minutes and then add the spinach to the pan.
- Season and serve.