(WHTM) — They say breakfast is the most important meal of the day. That’s especially true to keep kids alert and energized for a day at school.

But what should we be putting on their plates?

“The two big things would be protein and fiber,” GIANT nutritionist Shanna Shultz said. “Those two things will provide them with fuel and energy to get through the day, but also make that energy long-lasting, which is what we really need to get them through to lunchtime.”

So how do we make sure we get protein and fiber in their meal when we don’t have a lot of time in the morning? One idea from Shultz is frozen Kodiak pancakes or waffles. They are packed with whole grains and protein. You can also find protein yogurt-based drinks or smoothies.

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With those, as with cereals and granola bars, added sugar is always the concern. Read the labels; you should aim for no more than eight grams of added sugar per serving.

“Those added sugars, we really don’t want to rely on those sugars for energy,” Shultz said. “We want to rely on natural sugars in foods like your whole grains and fruits to power us through the day. The added sugar can actually make us feel a little sluggish.”

If you’re worried about finding a cereal or granola bar that’s under that magic number that your kids will actually eat, bring them with you to the store. Have them help you read the labels and let them make the choice. That can often eliminate breakfast-time food battles.