Ben wants us to get the most out of our breakfasts

Ben wants us to get the most out of our breakfasts

Tell us about this campaign that you're working on with Nestle.

Basically we had the battle of the breakfasts between the three of us, Sarah, me and Louise, who have spent a portion of our lives working on breakfast television or breakfast radio. To understand who out of us had the healthiest breaksfast and what we could change about our breakfast that would have a beneficial effect nutritionally.

I was really keen to see what sort of a difference it would make to me if I was going to trade in or swap my daily croissant or Danish pastry which I obviously loved when I was getting up first thing in the morning, or a bacon roll with a bowl of cereal for example. I eat Cheerios and Shreddies now with my children and I'm quite shocked with the savings that I'm making from a calorie and fat perspective from across the month, it was amazing.

You won the challenge, didn't you?

Yes, I did. I have the healthiest breakfast.

What did you eat beforehand then?

I was always rubbish going through University and my early adulthood eating breakfast. Everyone knows how difficult eating breakfast is because you're usually in a mad rush, leave everything too late and you're trying to get out of the house. When you've got children as well, breakfast needs to be really convienient, so I'd grab some toast or a bacon sandwich on the way to work or when I got to work it would be danish pastries, because you get there so early you need something quick and easy. So swapping that with a bowl of cereal had a huge impact in fact, just in terms of my energy across the morning, it's much more balanced because the release of energy from the cereal is great, and the benefits I've had from a calorie perspective has been huge.

What sort of tips did you learn about having a healthy breakfast, for children as well?

Without a doubt, the benefits are if myself and my children have breakfast together we have cereal they get all of the nutrients from the milk, they get the wholegrain from the Cheerios that we eat together and I know that they're going to get part of their guidelines of wholegrain from them. They get a portion of that, which I know is going to help them battle heart disease. I know that they're getting a decent energy source first thing in the morning, so when they get to school they concentrate, they can focus, they can work hard and that will keep them going until lunch time.

I can remember going to school and not having any breakfast and by the time I got to lunch I was on my knees, I could barely keep my eyes open and I was desperate for whatever was going to be there.

I never had time for breakfast, but now I'll always make time for it, something that's going to make a difference.

Do you have a treat breakfast that you like to have on the weekend?

I don't there is any as seductive as the smell of bacon, so it's still lovely to have that. When the boys were little we used to go to this cafe every Saturday morning and Jack suddenly remembered it, he's five now, so we went there for breakfast and we had scrambled egg, bacon and stuff. That was lovely going back there. It's nice to have a treat on the weekends, and occassionally Annie will make some croissants and stuff like that; the smell of them cooking is really delicious as well.

How's your time been since you left GMTV, two years now if you can believe it.

It's gone over so fast hasn't it?! It's been amazing. I've been loving the extra sleep for a start. But it's always great to get out of your comfort zone and go into an environment that I had no experience of, but then working in an industry that I absolutely adore has been a real pleasure. Working with people who are hugely passionate about and working in a field that they're hugely passionate about is absolutely brilliant. There is an infectious enthusiasm because everybody loves their job. I've been at Wembley, I've hosted the Carling Cup Final which was incredible. We were live there before that with Kris Kamara, we done a live outside broadcast from Wembley which is one of the outstanding memories that I'll have from my broadcasting career. Watching the finals as a child, and then being there reporting was a real treat, as well as a challenge.

It's been challenging, it's been exciting, thrilling and hugely educational, I've learnt so much and hopefully I'll carry on doing that.

Did you find it difficult making the transition from news to sport?

Well, we did a lot of sport for GMTV anyway and I've always loved and been involved with sport and I've done bits in the past. So, it wasn't necessarily difficult transfering from current affairs, news, lifestlye to sport per se. The challenge for me has been working in a completely different environment, with people who do things differently.

You assume that when you go from one TV studio to the next that it will all be done exactly the same but it's much like going from one magazine to another they have different processes, different ways of doing things. Learning the ins and otus of how Sky works has been really interesting as well. It's had its challenges, but I thrive in that sort of environment. I'd much rather be challenging myself and pushing myself than staying complacent.

You've had plenty of sports stars on the sofa, who would you love to come on the show?

I'd love to have Paulo Di Canio on. I think he's done an incredible job at Swindon. I played against him once for Soccer Aid and I managed to get his shirt of him, which he didn't have much choice about honestly.

I'd love to get Didier Drogba on the show, I think any of the Chelsea boys really, Frank Lampard especially after what they've achieved. I'd love to have Robin van Persie. Carlos Tevez, to get Tevez on the show, I'm not sure how good his English is, but any of the Manchester City boys.

I was lucky enough to do a question and answer with Paul Scholes and Gary Neville at the start of the year but having Paul Scholes would be pretty special as well, he's a man who has achieved so much. Then some of the youngsters as well, I think Jordan Rhodes has done an incredible job at Huddersfield. Getting a younster in to see what his hopes and expectations are. It would be brilliant to get Messi on the show, Cristiano Ronaldo, any of those guys. Jose Mourhino - let's get him on the show too.

I just wanted to know how you can contrentrate and do your job so well, when you have to compete with Kris Kamara's shirts?

[Laughs] That's been the hardest thing I've had to face. But if you can manage Chris Kamara and his shirts then you can manage anything; you could herd cats. He has a pretty unique sense of style, fortunately it's unique. He's a brilliant guy, I'm really lucky to count him as a friend and it's been brilliant working with him. He's an absolute gem.

Obviously we've got two big sporting events going on this summer, are you working either of them?

I'm not working for the Euros, I'm able to sit back and enjoy them just as a spectator, which is brilliant. I am hopefully going to be doing some stuff with Locox for the Olympics, they're promoting people around the country celebrating the opening ceremony. They're trying to encourage people to have big opening parties. World's Sports Day I've been in schools promoting that as well. Hopefully I'll be involved with the Olympics and will get to do some stuff down at the venues as well.

Do you have tickets for any of the events?

I'm not 100% sure which ones I'm going to yet. I'd like to see some athletics, cycling. I'd love to go the rowing as well. Anything, to be honest I just want to be apart of it and be there and soak up the atmosphere. You can go round in a bus in Stratford where the Olympic park is, I try to imagine it with tens of thousands of people there and it's really exciting.

Ben Shephard is supporting the Battle of the Breakfast Shows campaign for Nestlé Cereals. See how your breakfast matches up at www.battleofthebreakfasts.co.uk

Femalefirst Taryn Davies


by for www.femalefirst.co.uk
find me on and follow me on

Recommended Articles