It seems like a paradox, but eating actually can help you maintain a healthy weight and even lose a few pounds, especially when it comes to breakfast.

Many of us skimp on this important first meal of the day, either because we're in a rush or it seems like a good place to cut a few calories.

Unfortunately, this usually leads to feeling starved by midmorning. That's when the temptation is greatest to grab a doughnut or other carb-dense food for a quick (and counterproductive) energy fix. Studies have shown that people who eat a healthy breakfast have an easier time dieting (because they're not hungry all the time) and are better at keeping off the weight they lose.

Choose foods that are low-calorie and filling, such as fresh fruits and vegetables or low-fat dairy products, such as yogurt or skim milk. Whole-grain cereals are filled with plenty of nutrients and dietary fiber, which makes you feel full longer. For more energy-dense choices, consider an egg, some peanut butter or even a few nuts.