Consumer Alert: Healthy breakfast on the go

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Studies show that about one-third of Americans are eating their breakfast on the go while heading out to work or school – leaving many to wonder, is it possible to eat a healthy breakfast?

The editors at Consumer Reports say that there are some decent options to eating a healthy breakfast away from home.

“You want something that’s low in sodium. Low in fat. Not too high in calories and not too high in sugars,” says Consumer Reports’ Trisha Calvo.

The publication’s editors tested 48 items from six popular food chains.

They say that their favorite breakfast sandwich is the avocado egg white and spinach sandwich from Panera. Editors rated it “excellent” for taste and “very good” for nutrition.

“It was very fresh tasting and it was loaded with nutrition and not too high in sodium,” Calvo says.

Editors picked it over similar options like the egg white veggie omelet sandwich from Dunkin’ Donuts. They say that the Dunkin’ Donuts sandwich has a similar nutrition value, but in about half as big a serving size.

Some items like oatmeal can vary widely, even on the same menu. Consumer Reports found that at Starbucks, the hearty blueberry oatmeal with agave had a third of the sugar of the regular oatmeal.

“The agave syrup just gives it a little bit of sweetness but doesn’t add too many sugars to it,” says Calvo. “It was a very hearty oatmeal.”

But Consumer Reports says that consumers who do not choose their breakfast options wisely can start their day with an unhealthy breakfast.

The McDonald’s Big Breakfast with Hotcakes has 1,350 calories – two-thirds of the average daily requirement, 65 grams of fat and almost a full days’ worth of sodium at 2,100 grams.

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