There is much debate as to whether or not we need a healthy breakfast. Many of my weight loss clients wonder if they need it and if so, what should they eat? Is it important to eat breakfast as soon as you wake up or do you have time to take a shower or do some chores first?
I’ve read the research and have left my findings below.
Breakfast Over Dinner
A study of 450 Saudi female students scaled the timing of energy intake against obesity. The researchers concluded that a higher energy consumption at breakfast was not associated with obesity. However, a higher energy consumption during dinner was positively linked (Alamri ES. 2019).
Xiao Q et al. (2019) came to the same conclusion but added that we should consider nutritional intake in relation to sleep timing when it comes to obesity and our metabolic health. For example, a night worker will have a different meal strategy to a person who works during the day.
Eat breakfast like a king, lunch like a prince and dinner like a pauper.
Adelle Davis – American Nutritionist
Blood Sugar Levels
This may interest you if you’re a type one or a type two diabetic. People with these conditions may have less control over their blood sugar if they don’t consume breakfast. However, type one diabetics may also experience less control when they increase the number of meals they have (AJ Ahola et al. 2019, Hashimoto Y et al. 2020).
Maintaining a stable insulin level should interest those of us who don’t have diabetes too. After all, a drop in our insulin level may induce cravings and therefore over consumption. That being said, the above paragraph may not apply to you unless you have diabetes. People who don’t have diabetes are much better at maintaining a stable insulin level.
So far, I’ve spoken quite heavily in favor of eating breakfast. Therefore I should note that the aforementioned studies have note specified when we should eat in relation to our morning activities.
I often get asked about fasted cardio and practicing exercise first thing in the morning, before breakfast. Fasted exercise increases lipid utilization. Lipid utilization is when fat gets metabolized by our bodies. Interestingly, those who partake in fasted exercise may experience a reduction in postprandial insulinemia. This is an excess of insulin in the bloodstream after eating (Edinburgh RM et al. 2020).
Postprandial insulinemia is associated with hunger, cravings and weight gain. There are also various medical issues which come with Postprandial insulinemia. As I am not a medical professional, it is not my place to educate you about this condition. Therefore, I would recommend you visit diabetes.co.uk.
I am not saying that we should exercise before breakfast. Fasted cardio may benefit type 2 diabetics but metabolizing fat is not our concern unless we have a medical issue to address. To lose weight we simply need to focus on burning more calories than we ingest.
My article “Overcoming Poor Muscle Tone” is an excellent resource if you’d like to learn more about calorie intake, weight loss and muscle tone.
Your Healthy Breakfast Plan
Irregularity in breakfast consumption and irregularity in meal times, may be related to weight status and inflammation (Guinter MA et al. 2019). It’s not about eating as soon as you wake up. We simply need to be more consistent with our meal timings.
If you eat breakfast on some days but not on others, it may be an issue. If you frequently change the times in which you eat any meal, it may be an issue. So try to schedule in your meals as oppose to leaving it to chance.
If you wish to do a workout or a few chores before breakfast, go for it. There is no harm in doing so and there’s next to no benefit in stuffing your face as soon as you wake up.
If you struggle to find time to eat, opt for a high protein snack suck as nuts, a yogurt or a protein bar. These foods will keep you fuller for longer. Furthermore, they’re much less calorific than a latte or a chocolate bar.
Finally, remember that there’s only one thing to consider whilst trying to lose weight – are you burning more calories than you’re consuming on a daily basis?
- Stop Binge Eating Immediately!
- The Benefits of a High Protein Diet
- Overcoming Poor Muscle Tone
- 5 Weight Loss Tips for Preventing Hunger
- Is Starvation Mode Real?