Rise and Shine: The Benefits of a Blood Sugar Balancing Breakfast for Teenagers

Rise and Shine: The Benefits of a Blood Sugar Balancing Breakfast for Teenagers

Eating a balanced breakfast is essential for everyone, but it is particularly important for developing teens. Starting the day off with a nutritious meal can set the tone for the rest of the day, providing the energy and focus needed to tackle school and extracurricular activities.


However, not all breakfasts are created equal, and it is essential to pay attention to the types of foods consumed to ensure that blood sugar levels remain balanced throughout the day.


In this blog, we will explore the importance of eating a blood sugar balancing breakfast for developing teens, the dangers of consuming sugary breakfasts, and the benefits of incorporating fiber, fat, and protein into the morning meal.


The effects of a sugary breakfast on blood sugar balance and emotions in teens


It can be easy to consume excess sugars at breakfast despite our best efforts to eat healthily. Many common breakfast foods, such as cereals and fruit juices, are loaded with added sugars. Even seemingly healthy options like flavored yogurts or granola bars can contain high amounts of added sugars.


Moreover, when we’re in a rush, we may not have the time to prepare a balanced breakfast and may resort to grabbing something quick and convenient, which may end up being high in sugar.

Page 2 | Fruit Loops Cereal Images - Free Download on Freepik


Eating a breakfast that is high in sugar can have a negative impact on blood sugar levels, leading to a range of health problems. When sugary foods are consumed, the body experiences a rapid spike in blood sugar levels, leading to a rush of insulin being produced to bring the levels back down.


However, this sudden release of insulin can cause blood sugar levels to plummet, leading to feelings of tiredness, lethargy, and difficulty concentrating.


This drop in blood sugar levels can also cause cravings for more sugary foods, perpetuating the cycle and leading to further health problems.


Blood sugar imbalances can have a profound impact on the emotions of developing teens. When blood sugar levels are low, individuals may experience feelings of irritability, anxiety, and depression (1).


In addition to emotional stability, blood sugar imbalances can also impact cognitive function, making it difficult for teens to concentrate and retain information. This can have negative consequences for academic performance, as well as overall quality of life. These emotions can be particularly challenging for teens, who are already navigating the emotional challenges of adolescence (2).


It is important to note that if a low-carb lunch is consumed after a sugary breakfast, the body will still produce insulin in response to the previous spike in blood sugar levels. This can potentially lead to further blood sugar imbalances, as the insulin produced in response to the sugary breakfast may continue to lower blood sugar levels after the low-carb lunch is consumed, resulting in hypoglycemia or low blood sugar.


The importance of a blood sugar-balancing breakfast


By consuming a balanced breakfast that supports blood sugar stability, teens can help to regulate their emotions and set themselves up for a successful day. In a study conducted at the Institute of Youth Sport at Loughborough University (UK), adolescents who consumed a low-glycaemic breakfast had a better response times compared to those who consumed a high glycaemic index breakfast or omitted breakfast (3).


Another study also found that mental performance usually declines throughout the morning in young subjects and this decline can be significantly reduced following the intake of a low GI cereal as compared with a high GI cereal on measures of attention and memory (1)



The Importance of Fiber, Fat, and Protein in a balanced breakfast


When it comes to creating a blood sugar balancing breakfast, there are a few key nutrients that you should focus on: protein, fat, and fiber. These nutrients work together to provide a slow and steady release of energy, helping to regulate your blood sugar levels and keep you feeling full and satisfied (4).


  • Protein: including a source of protein at breakfast can help to reduce the glycemic index of the meal, leading to a more stable energy release (5). Protein also helps to reduce hunger and prevent overeating later in the day (6). Good sources of protein include eggs, Greek yogurt, nuts, and seeds. Adding a scoop of whey protein to a smoothie or oatmeal can also provide a convenient and tasty source of protein in the morning.


  • Fat: including healthy fats in your breakfast can also help to regulate your blood sugar levels by slowing down the digestion process and keep you feeling full (7). Avocado, nut butter, and coconut oil are all good sources of healthy fats.


  • Fiber: similar to protein and fats, fiber can slow down the digestion of carbohydrates in a meal to ensure a stable energy supply (8). Fiber is also important for digestive health. Good sources of fibre include fruits, vegetables, and whole grains.


By including a variety of protein, fat, and fibre in your breakfast, you can create a balanced meal that will keep you feeling energized and focused throughout the morning.


Protein Breakfast Options


1. Greek Yogurt Parfait: Layer Greek yogurt with fresh berries, sliced almonds, and a drizzle of honey for a protein-packed breakfast that’s both delicious and nutritious.

Parfait Images - Free Download on Freepik


2. Scrambled Eggs with Whole Grain Toast: Whip up some scrambled eggs and serve with a slice of whole grain toast for a classic breakfast that’s full of protein and fiber.


Premium Photo | Scrambled eggs on wholewheat toast


3. Peanut Butter Banana Smoothie: Blend together peanut butter, banana, Greek yogurt, almond milk, and a touch of honey for a smoothie that’s both creamy and protein-rich.


4. Breakfast Burrito: Fill a whole grain tortilla with scrambled eggs, black beans, avocado, and salsa for a savory breakfast that’s packed with protein and fiber.


5. Overnight Oats: Mix rolled oats with Greek yogurt, almond milk, chia seeds, and a touch of honey, and let it sit in the fridge overnight. In the morning, top with fresh berries and sliced almonds for a protein-rich breakfast that’s perfect for busy mornings.


6. Breakfast Quinoa Bowl: Cook quinoa in almond milk, then top with Greek yogurt, sliced banana, chopped nuts, and a drizzle of maple syrup for a sweet and satisfying breakfast that’s loaded with protein.


Breakfast Options with whey/plant protein powder


  1. Smoothie bowl: Blend your favorite fruits with some yogurt or milk, and add a scoop of whey or plant protein powder to create a delicious and nutritious smoothie bowl. Top it with granola, nuts, and seeds for added texture and flavor.


     2. Overnight oats: Mix together oats, chia seeds, and milk, and add a scoop of whey or plant protein powder. Let it sit in the fridge overnight, and enjoy a tasty and filling breakfast in the morning.


3. Protein pancakes: Combine protein powder, oats, banana, and egg whites to make a delicious and high-protein pancake batter. Cook in a non-stick pan and serve with fresh fruit and maple syrup.


  4. Protein-packed yogurt: Mix a scoop of whey or plant protein powder into your yogurt for a protein-packed breakfast. Top with fresh berries, nuts, and seeds for added nutrition and flavor.



In conclusion, eating a blood sugar balancing breakfast is essential for developing teens. Consuming sugary breakfasts can lead to blood sugar imbalances, which can have negative impacts on emotional stability and cognitive function. By incorporating fiber, fat, and protein into the morning meal, teens can support blood sugar stability and set themselves up for a successful day. It is important to prioritize nutrition and balance when it comes to breakfast, as it can have a profound impact on overall health and




  1. Ingwersen, Jeanet et al. “A low glycaemic index breakfast cereal preferentially prevents children’s cognitive performance from declining throughout the morning.” Appetite vol. 49,1 (2007): 240-4
  2. Jacques, A., Chaaya, N., Beecher, K., Ali, S.A., Belmer, A. and Bartlett, S. (2019). The impact of sugar consumption on stress driven, emotional and addictive behaviors. Neuroscience & Biobehavioral Reviews, [online] 103(103), pp.178–199. doi:
  3. Cooper, S.B., Bandelow, S., Nute, M.L., Morris, J.G. and Nevill, M.E. (2012). Breakfast glycaemic index and cognitive function in adolescent school children. The British Journal of Nutrition, [online] 107(12), pp.1823–1832.
  4. Nuttall, F.Q. and Gannon, M.C. (1991). Plasma Glucose and Insulin Response to Macronutrients in Nondiabetic and NIDDM Subjects. Diabetes Care, 14(9), pp.824–838. doi:
  5. Moghaddam, E., Vogt, J.A. and Wolever, T.M.S. (2006). The Effects of Fat and Protein on Glycemic Responses in Nondiabetic Humans Vary with Waist Circumference, Fasting Plasma Insulin, and Dietary Fiber Intake. The Journal of Nutrition, [online] 136(10), pp.2506–2511. doi:
  6. Spiller, G.A., Jensen, C.D., Pattison, T.S., Chuck, C.S., Whittam, J.H. and Scala, J. (1987). Effect of protein dose on serum glucose and insulin response to sugars. The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, 46(3), pp.474–480. doi:
  7. Owen, B. and Wolever, T.M. (2003). Effect of fat on glycaemic responses in normal subjects: a dose-response study. Nutrition Research, 23(10), pp.1341–1347. doi:
  8. Giuntini, E.B., Sardá, F.A.H. and de Menezes, E.W. (2022). The Effects of Soluble Dietary Fibers on Glycemic Response: An Overview and Futures Perspectives. Foods, [online] 11(23), p.3934. doi:


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