It’s one of those busy school days. You are summoned up from bed by the alarm clock, barely having enough time to wash your face and brush your teeth before you rush to the school. You tell yourself and everyone: I do not have time for breakfast. When you get hungry in the later part of the morning, you gobble up a bag of potato chips while rushing between classrooms during the break. By lunch time, your stomach is full and you now do not have an appetite for lunch—the school lunch is not palatable anyway, plus you have club meetings at lunch time. You skip the lunch with perfect justifications.
The routine above may be common among your peers, but it reveals a serious, health-threatening problem among high school students.
It is well-known that breakfast and lunch provide the energy necessary for our body to function properly during the day. Breakfast and lunch also restore and maintain glucose levels, an essential carbohydrate that is needed for our brain to work efficiently. Without these meals, not only our body functions would be deprived of essential energy supplies , but our brain activities would be severely hampered—our learning ability, memory and concentration levels would be adversely affected.
In addition to providing for our energy needs and cognitive functions, breakfast and lunch also regulate the normal operation of our body’s metabolism. When we skip meals, our metabolism begins to slow, causing us to feel sluggish throughout the day.
As high school students, our growing bodies and developing brains need regular refueling from food, more often than adults. When we skip meals, we don’t get what they need to be at our best. According to the American Dietetic Association, young adults who eat breakfast perform better in the classroom and on the playground, with better concentration, problem-solving, and eye-hand coordination abilities.
Here are a few tips for those who feel that they are busy enough to skip breakfast or lunch:
– Rise a few minutes earlier in the morning so that you’ll have sufficient time for a serious breakfast.
– If someone is driving you to school, you can have breakfast in the car.
– Do not eat before bedtime at night so that you’ll have an appetite for breakfast. Do not eat snack right before lunch time so that you’ll have an appetite for lunch.
– Plan your breakfast or lunch with food that appeal to your appetite, for example, yogurt of a particular taste, a specific fruit, a certain type of bread or pastry, or a sandwich of a distinct flavor.
– Bring your lunch bag to your lunchtime club meetings, or eat your lunch before the meetings. After all, no one at the meetings should continue their day without having lunch.
“Eat breakfast like a king, lunch like a prince and dinner like a pauper.”
Do you want to be a king and a prince?
You can if you want to.