Toast, healthy
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The British love their toast for breakfast, but most people are not sure if it’s actually good for them or not. Well, there is positive news. It really is good for you – as long as you follow a few simple guidelines.

A study by Dr Daniela Jakubowicz of Tel Aviv University recommends toast for the first meal of the day. She says, “The hour of the day – when you eat and how frequently you eat – is more important than what you eat and how many calories you eat.”
Her study found that people who ate a big breakfast, medium lunch and small dinner lost more weight than people who ate 6 small meals per day.
And Australian Nutritionist Susie Burrell agrees. “Dieters should spread their carb consumption throughout the day and watch the size of their portions.”

The toast facts

One slice of wholegrain toast is about 70 calories, and 1 gram of fat. That sounds appealing already! The downside is that toast doesn’t taste good on its own – you need to put something on it – and this where people tend to let themselves down by smothering it in butter and then adding a dollop of sugar-filled jam.

The right bread for toast

And don’t use white bread – it has the wheat grain stripped of almost all its nutrients and fibre and then it is usually bleached white using chemicals. Then the resulting flour is then made into bread – which sometimes has a few synthetically produced vitamins thrown back in, and the manufacturers claim the bread is ‘enriched’ which is a quite an ambitious term, all things considered.

Is one slice of toast enough?

Dietician Melissa Meier of mybodyandsoul.com says the trick is eating the wholegrain variety – the brown, seedy kind. “Don’t feel the need to stop at one slice, either,” she adds, “One slice counts as a single serve of grains, of which women between 19-50 are recommended to have 6 per day!”

What to put on your toast?

We’ve already mentioned that putting butter on your toast can defeat the object of having a healthy meal, but what IS a good alternative to put on your toast that won’t ruin your healthy eating effort?

wholegrain bread
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Here’s a selection of options that are great for making your toast into a tasty meal.
1. Almond butter, banana and cinnamon – a bit of natural sweetener goes a very long way.
2. Avocado, cucumber and sea salt
3. Roasted red peppers and feta
4. Hummus, cucumber and sea salt
5. Egg, spinach and pesto (quickly fry the spinach in a little oil and add a poached egg for the perfect way to start the day).
6. Avocado, fresh salsa and coriander
7. Mushrooms, garlic and thyme
8. Pecan butter and sliced apple

Other excellent ingredients you could use include: Salad items/eggs/low fat cheese/beans/tomatoes/beetroot

Energy-dense foods hold the key

Foods that are classed as ‘energy-dense’ are perfect when you’re on a diet as they make you feel full. The Journal of Nutrition says, “Fibre-rich or energy-dense foods make you feel fuller for longer. This can help you lose weight because you’ll consume fewer calories during the day. Wholegrain toast is energy-dense AND fibre-filled, making it a very healthy diet option to help you cut calories.”

When is best to eat toast?

Because whole-grains are hi-density and nutrient-dense, it means wholegrain toast is perfect at breakfast as it gets your metabolism running and helps to make you feel full and energised to start off the day.

Wheat toast is also good as a quick and easy snack. Rich in carbohydrates which help keep your energy levels up instead of making you feel sluggish.
So, yes, toast can be very beneficial to you if you eat the right sort of bread at the right time of day.

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