A Fast, Filling, Fat-Burning Breakfast in Just 5 Minutes

"You have no idea how crazy my morning can be," someone recently wrote me. "With three kids, a husband who constantly loses his keys, plus some other minor catastrophe, I have absolutely no time to eat anything healthy."

She was referring to several studies I mention that show a protein-rich breakfast keeps you full, focused, and burning fat all morning.

Trust me, I get the time crunch. Juggling two businesses with two teenage sons leaves me little time for a leisurely wild-caught salmon and barnyard eggs breakfast. But I know just how crucial a nutrient-rich meal can be in order to feel focused and fabulous no matter what morning throws at me.

That's why I always make my first meal a protein shake, which becomes the fastest, most effortless healthy breakfast in the world. Even if you’re on the go, stuck at a weekend business conference, or stranded at your office, you can whip a protein shake up to balance your blood sugar and give you steady, sustained energy for hours.

I've had clients do nothing else than have a protein shake to attain (and maintain) fast, lasting fat loss. Here are 5 reasons you should always make breakfast a protein shake...

1. Convenience. Manufacturers know reaching for a box of cereal with skim milk takes minimal effort. They also know among the frantic-ness of looking for your keys and getting kids ready for school, you’re most likely to take the path of least resistance at breakfast. A protein shake offers you the same convenience without cereal’s high sugar impact, which only leaves you crashing and cranky a few hours later. 

2. Lasting energy. That low-fat (read: high-sugar impact) muffin and latte raises your blood sugar levels, setting you up for a 10:30 a.m. crash that leaves you running for the nearest bagel cart. A protein shake, on the other hand, gives you sustained energy for hours. That means no late-morning donut cravings and no snapping at your coworkers once your blood sugar levels crash.

3. Affordability. Tally up how much you spend on high-sugar impact breakfast biscuits, muffins, or whatever else counts for breakfast. Surprised? A protein shake provides a cost-effective alternative. Better yet, consider how much cash a protein shake will save you on your next vacation. (Really, $18 for room-service eggs and coffee!?) For less than you'd pay for a designer coffee, you get a low-sugar impact, protein-rich breakfast.

4. Fast. You know that time excuse for not having breakfast? It doesn’t work with a protein shake. In about the time it takes to pour cereal and milk, you can toss all your ingredients in a blender for a filling, delicious breakfast.

5. Healthy. Sure, they’re convenient and offer a little protein and nutrients, but those so-called healthy breakfast bars and canned shakes come loaded with sugar, artificial sweeteners and flavors, and other things that don’t constitute a smart breakfast. You can custom-load a protein shake with good fat, fiber, antioxidants, and high-quality protein that boosts your metabolism and helps burn fat. One study found protein shakes “can safely and effectively produce significant sustainable weight loss and improve weight-related risk factors of disease.”

Below you'll find my basic shake recipe. What to look for in a protein powder? Check out these criteria.

In my upcoming JJ Virgin's Sugar Impact Diet Cookbook: 150 Low-Sugar Recipes to Help You Lose Up to 10 Pounds in Just 2 Weeks (available May 26 on Amazon; preorder yours now!), you'll find lots more fabulous, delicious, low-sugar impact shake recipes for fast, lasting fat loss.

Sugar Impact Shake

(Makes 1 serving. Blend all ingredients until consistently smooth.)

  • 1–2 scoops protein blend (per package instructions)
  • 1-2 scoops fiber blend
  • 1/2 small avocado
  • 1 tablespoon freshly ground chia or flax seeds
  • 8-10 ounces unsweetened coconut milk or almond milk
  • 5-6 ice cubes

So if what's for breakfast? is your day's first big stressor, make it easy on yourself with a shake. What do you opt for in the morning to stay full and focused all morning? Share your comments below.

© 2021 JJ Virgin & Associates, Inc.

9/29/2021 8:00:00 AM
JJ Virgin
Written by JJ Virgin
Celebrity Nutrition & Fitness Expert JJ Virgin helps clients lose weight fast by breaking free from food intolerances and crushing their sugar cravings. She is author of New York Times Bestsellers The Virgin Diet: Drop 7 Foods, Lose 7 Pounds, Just 7 Days, The Virgin Diet Cookbook: 150 Easy and Delicious Recipes to Lose W...
View Full Profile Website: http://www.jjvirgin.com/

Sounds delicious ... and I am a frugal eater ... but if that was all I had for breakfast I would be starving within an hour ... gotta have something solid and filling that sticks with me until lunch. However, you deserve kudos for providing this info for those who have good sustainability. Thanks.
Posted by Bob

Great advice although after using protein drinks after a surgery I discovered that many of them have some very offensive ingredients. Consumer Reports did an excellent article on this a couple of years back. Believe it or don't but Carnation Instant Breakfasts work great and even easier to use and a tad 'safer'.
Posted by Barry
My go to daily smoothie for the past few years...
Unsweetened Almond milk, plain kefir, coconut water, frozen or fresh wild blueberries, strawberries, pineapple and avocado...also a scoop of greens powder along with a nice dash of cinnamon.
Delicious! I make my smoothie for the road after my morning warm lemon water and then a non fat latte along with a square of dark chocolate.
Posted by Renda
Protein powder seems to be the rage, but I have a dairy intolerance. No fast protein shakes for me. What makes up the fiber powder? First I've heard of it. Not wanting MSG.
Posted by Carol Schott
Why should one avoid egg protein? My husband swears by it.
Posted by Susan
what kind of fiber powder do you recommend? Are you talking metamucil or some specialty product? No way is this inexpensive. The avocado alone will set you back 50 cents (for half) in my area, and I have priced almond milk and "cheap" protein powder. Why assume all cereals have very high sugar levels? There is no cereal in our household with 5 kids that has more that 6 grams of sugar, and those are usually cut 50/50 with something lower in sugar like puffed wheat or bran flakes.
Posted by mamacita
Most people don't know that protein powders contain MSG, not as an additive (so is not listed on the label), but a result of the temperature at which the powder is dried. I have an allergy to MSG (creates intestinal inflammation, discomfort and diarrhea/constipation) and have had to give up on protein powders. Instead, I add 1/2 cup of cottage cheese or 2 coddled eggs (lightly steamed) to my smoothie. It's a healthful whole-food protein source; the cottage cheese also provides whey to give the benefit of whey protein powder without the MSG.
Posted by Cat42
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