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/ Source: TODAY
By Erica Chayes Wida

Do you start the day with a hearty breakfast, a refreshing green juice or nothing at all? A new study has revealed what many Americans eat for the most important meal of the day — if they actually eat anything in the morning.

Not everyone seems to think that the first meal of the day is actually the most important one, according to the study, which was conducted by polling agency OnePoll, along with hummus-maker Sabra. Based on survey responses, the pollsters revealed that the average person eats breakfast only three times a week.

But when they do, most people enjoy an egg dish of some kind.

Drawing from a group of 2,000 survey respondents, OnePoll tallied that 65% of Americans prefer eggs for breakfast, 58% have just coffee and 56% percent enjoy a bowl of cereal.

The runner-ups were a breakfast sandwich (devoured by 46% of people) and, not surprisingly, bacon (42%).

Participants also had the option to choose from hummus toast and avocado toast (aside from avocado toast's trend factor, Sabra is a dip company, after all), oatmeal, cereal, a bagel with cream cheese, banana bread, a muffin or a pastry. Ina Garten's all-time favorite breakfast, a tartine with butter and strawberry jam, was not on the list. But Sabra did offer a "none of the above" option for all the folks partial to tartines and healthy breakfast smoothies.

Another survey published in November of 2018 by Vitagene, which obtained data on every state's top breakfast of choice via Google, also pointed to eggs being a popular dish. Out of endless breakfast options that included everything from cereal to chicken and waffles and even tofu scrambles, nine states (or about 20% of Americans) favored some type of egg dish.

Nutritionally, eggs have a lot to offer, according to nutritionist Elisa Zied. With about 70 calories in one large egg, eggs are a great source of protein, which helps stabilize blood sugar levels. Egg protein is also high quality, providing many essential amino acids.

While a 2016 study conducted by the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition found that eating one egg every day would likely not increase the risk of developing heart disease, there are cautions. Eggs, like many animal proteins, contain saturated fat and too much saturated fat has been shown to raise total cholesterol and LDL (bad) cholesterol levels — both risk factors for cardiovascular disease.

However, according to most nutritionists, those in good health can safely enjoy an egg a day (yolk and all) without worry.

So don't go skipping breakfast fearing that eggs may ruin your diet. The Sabra survey found that 13% of Americans "rarely, if ever, eat breakfast," which is definitely not recommended by most nutritionists if you want to keep your energy levels up and avoid binging later in the day.

Give oatmeal, avocado toast or a nice veggie-filled scramble a chance before going straight to lunch.