Cereal, like other sugary breakfast food, gets a good reputation just because it’s a breakfast food. But upon further inspection, that may not be well deserved. Runners are a fairly health-conscious group and typically try to get the most nutritionally out of their meals. Here’s how your breakfast might be falling short.

The Daily Meal spoke with nutritionist Chelsey Amer, MS, RDN, CDN, who said, “a slice of pizza contains more fat and much less sugar than most cold cereals, so you will not experience a quick sugar crash.”

RELATED: Best fast food options for the traveling runner

Nutritionist Melissa Piercell spoke with Canadian Running in August about what to look for when eating out, but her fast food guidelines can apply as general eating guidelines as well. “Ideally with fast food, the first thing to look at is protein.” Once you’ve found several options with adequate protein, Piercell suggests choosing the option with the least sugar. Certain foods will have loads of added sugar, for example, Tim Horton’s chili has five grams of sugar. That’s a lot for a savoury dish. 

To illustrate the point: one serving of a cereal that’s traditionally considered healthy, like Bran Buds, contains seven grams of sugar and only three grams of protein in 1/3 of a cup. 

While pizza can be a little greasy and isn’t a perfect breakfast choice, its relatively low sugar content and high protein content will keep you full for longer and can make it a viable option for the first meal of the day. 

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