WASHINGTON, Jan. 5, 2016 /PRNewswire/ -- Every year, January marks a fresh start for most Americans as they embark on a journey to set new goals and stick to New Year's resolutions. Many commitments revolve around kicking bad eating habits and sticking to a healthy diet. One of the easiest places to make a change is to your morning eating routine, and setting a specific goal will help you stick to it. This year, commit to make the most of each day by making sure each meal, including breakfast, has enough protein for best daily nutrition.
The Morning Protein Shortfall
Americans are mad for protein – and with good reason. In fact, nine in ten Americans say it's important to get enough protein in their diet.1 But it turns out when you get protein is just as important as how much you get – and that's where most Americans get it wrong.
Most people load up on protein in the evening, leaving their mornings lower in the nutrient more likely to keep them full. In fact, Americans get on average 13 grams of protein at breakfast, yet many experts now recommend getting 25-30 grams at each meal. 2, 3, 4 Backloading protein at dinner can affect how your body uses it, which is why experts suggest making the most of your protein and spacing out your intake of this important nutrient throughout the day.
Understanding How Milk's Protein Can Help
There is good news – simple changes to your morning routine can help correct this shortfall and aid in getting closer to the recommended 25-30 grams of protein at breakfast. Pairing a glass of milk, with high-quality protein, with your breakfast or mid-morning snack is an easy, delicious way to help get 25-30 grams before noon.
"Eating a protein-rich breakfast with milk can help energize your morning. Plus you'll feel fuller longer so you can focus on the things you want to accomplish," said Holley Grainger, MS, RD. "Not only is milk an ideal way to get high-quality protein, it also gives you many other essential nutrients you need, like calcium, vitamin D and potassium."
Whether in a glass, cup or bowl, mixed into a simple recipe, milk can help you get to a protein-packed breakfast. Simply pair a glass of milk with your favorite morning protein foods like eggs, overnight oatmeal or avocado toast. Chocolate milk is also a great protein partner in the morning.
"If you're a morning exerciser, try adding lowfat chocolate milk to your breakfast or mid-morning snack – it has the right protein to carb ratio to help you recover after a tough workout," said Grainger. "Or if you're always on the go, make an egg casserole on the weekend, portion it out for the week ahead then pair with a made with milk latte to up the protein count."
My Morning Protein Helps Consumers Get the Protein They Need
To help jumpstart the New Year, the national Milk Life campaign is encouraging Americans to show how milk and its high-quality protein is part of their morning protein. Visit MilkLife.com/morningprotein to understand your protein needs, see how your breakfast stacks up with a new protein calculator and get ideas for how you can fill up your cup with milk to get closer to your morning protein goal. Also, by using the #mymorningprotein on Facebook, Twitter or Instagram during the month of January, you can be entered to win free milk. Official contest rules can be found at milklife.com/articles/fun/My-Morning-Protein-Contest.
The Milk Processor Education Program (MilkPEP), Washington, D.C., is funded by the nation's milk companies, who are committed to increasing fluid milk consumption. The MilkPEP Board runs the Milk Life campaign, a multi-faceted campaign designed to educate consumers about the powerful nutritional benefits of milk – with 9 essential nutrients, including high-quality protein, in each 8 ounce glass. For more information, go to milklife.com. Campbell Ewald is creative agency for the Milk Life campaign – from America's milk companies.
1 International Food Information Council Foundation, 2015.
2 Layman DK, Dietary Guidelines should reflect new understandings about adult protein needs. Nutrition & Metabolism. 2009; 6:12.
3 Leidy, HJ, Clifton PM, Astrup A et al. The role of protein in weight loss and maintenance. American Journal of Clinical Nutrition. 2015 Apr 29. [Epub ahead of print].
4 What We Eat in America, NHANES, 2009-2010.
SOURCE Milk Processor Education Program (MilkPEP)