But what you eat makes all the difference, too, say experts. You should include foods that are nutritious and not just empty calories -- if junk food such as candy bars and doughnuts are a mainstay on your brekkie menu, they're not going to do your health any good in the long run.
So how can you make your breakfast healthier? Here are some ideas to make it better.
Make better bread selectionsCut out high-fat baked goods such as doughnuts and muffins, make your own sandwich instead. Choose whole-grain breads -- like whole wheat and rye -- which are a rich source of heart-healthy fiber, rather than white bread. And use the butter, jam and mayonnaise sparingly. Add tuna spread, reduced-fat cheese and a handful of lettuce, and you'll sneak in healthy protein, calcium and greens, too.
Make fruits and yogurt your grab-and-go choiceDo you munch on "instant" snacks and candy bars for breakfast because you're always rushing for time in the morning? Empty-calorie convenience snacks don't have to be your only option -- stash fresh fruits on the kitchen counter or low-fat yogurt in the fridge, so you can have them on the go.
Make unsweetened cereals a stapleThese healthy staples are all you need to make a quick ready-to-eat breakfast. And there's a lot to choose from, such as bran flakes, corn flakes, crispy rice cereals, whole-grain cereals, granola, or oatmeal -- just opt for the unsweetened variety, and skip the sugar. Top with a handful of berries or bananas to add natural sweetness, and skim or 1 percent milk instead of whole milk to cut back the fat.
Make omelettes healthierIf you're making an omelette, cut back on the fat and cholesterol by using only the egg whites. Toss in fresh vegetables like diced tomato, onion and bell pepper, and if you want to add meat, trade the bacon for lean turkey ham.
Make the switch from coffee...To a glass of orange juice, cranberry juice, or low-fat milk. Or try blending your own healthy smoothie by mixing fruits and yogurt. Try this Banana-Peach Breakfast Smoothie recipe:
Place 1 medium banana, 1 cup frozen peaches, 6 ounces low-fat vanilla yogurt, 2 tablespoons orange juice concentrate, and 1 tablespoon toasted wheat germ in a blender and blend until smooth.