If you’re looking to lose weight, tone up, or even just take steps towards a healthier lifestyle, beginning your journey can be intimidating. There are so many different diets and pieces of advice from tons of different sources that it can be difficult to decide what eating plan is right for you and your body type and lifestyle. However, a common piece of advice for those looking to lose weight is that you should never skip breakfast. Every time that I had heard that tidbit, it was explained that breakfast fills you up early in the day so that you will be less tempted to grab a muffin or cookie mid morning.
Additionally, eating breakfast supposedly gives you more energy to conquer the day (although all I usually need to conquer the day is a strong cup of coffee). Curious, I wondered if skipping breakfast was really all that bad. After all, my mornings are already hectic, and carving out the time to make breakfast (and a healthy one at that) takes up precious time in the morning that could be used for other things like meditation, working out, and reading the newspaper (but if I’m being honest, any extra time is more likely used for sleeping in). Let’s see what the expert opinion is on skipping breakfast.
What Science Says
A study done a few months ago by the Journal of Physiology would give a resounding yes… but with a catch. Just like us, they wanted to get to the bottom of the breakfast debacle, so they brought in forty-nine individuals ranging from young adult to middle aged and had them either not eat breakfast at all, or eat it every single day for six weeks. Those in the breakfast category could choose any breakfast they wanted (so technically they could have eaten Poptarts for six weeks straight), but apparently most opted for healthy, high-carb choices like breakfast cereal or toast. Participant’s metabolism were measured both before they completed the six week study and after.
Like most aspects of a scientific study, there wasn’t one, infinitive correct answer. Here’s what they found:
- For those who were not overweight, eating breakfast every day actually decreased their fat-burning capability. But before you go skipping breakfast…
- Eating breakfast did, however, point to a decreased risk of diabetes for those with normal body weights.
- Additionally, eating breakfast did give lean individuals more energy to burn those extra calories and prevented them from becoming sluggish or hungry throughout their morning.
- HOWEVER, the same cannot be said for the obese individuals who participated in the study. Obese people who ate breakfast were found to be more likely to burn fat than those in the fasting group.
The scientists conducting the study asserted that more research needs to be done on the topic before any broad claims about whether or not you should eat breakfast should be made. Also, they are not sure if choosing high-protein rather than high-carb breakfasts for those in the breakfast group would impact the study.
Overall, it sounds like eating breakfast is most beneficial to obese individuals who want to lost weight. Here’s what I have to say about the subject: You know your body and lifestyle better than any scientist or study. Test out what works best for you or consult your doctor for a customized plan. Doing research is great, but what’s most important is discovering the optimum course for your health.
That’s all for now… I’m off to pour a bowl of Cheerios. All this breakfast talk made me hungry.