American breakfast is not traditionally the healthiest meal of the day.

In fact, if we even manage to grab a bite, there is a good chance it is the biggest overload of “carbage” (carbohydrate garbage) we thoughtlessly feed our bodies each day. A closer look at ingredients in our cereals, bagels, English muffins, pancakes and waffles reveals a lot of white, processed flour, which basically equates to a sugar spike and a 10:30 am crash waiting to happen.

Not all Americans eat this way, but it’s rare to see a big bowl of vegetables balanced by a lean, healthy protein and a whole grain on the breakfast table in Peoria. Not so around the world. Our foreign friends are ramping up their days by eating an array of soups, chopped salads, steamed vegetables, lean fish, whole-grain rice and beans, among many other choices that seem more lunch- or dinner-like to Americans. We could learn a thing or two from people around the globe about what constitutes a healthy start to the day.

Are you an IDEA Fitness Journal reader living in another country, or have you brought your homeland’s breakfast traditions to America? Please share your cultural breakfast habits, why you believe they are healthy and the reasons you continue to enjoy them. Are they steeped in tradition? What foods are you eating, and how are they prepared? Does the whole family traditionally eat breakfast together? Share details with editor in chief Sandy Todd Webster at [email protected]