This is all well and good for those who like breakfast, but what about those people who don’t like eating breakfast? They’ve likely spent years being scolded by various breakfast-loving authorities, or bending to the will of personal trainers who insist they force down green smoothies. Two findings published this week are good news for those who are anti-breakfast, and who no longer want to surrender in the name of good health.
New research published this week in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition suggests eating breakfast may not provide the magical weight loss or health equation we so desire.
The research consists of two separate studies. The first was conducted at the University of Alabama at Birmingham Nutrition Research Center, where 300 volunteers, who were trying to lose weight, were observed over 16 weeks. The participants were randomly selected to either eat a controlled breakfast amount, skip breakfast altogether, or continue with their normal eating habits. By the end of the study none of the participants were shown to have lost more than a pound or so. The weight in all groups did not change as a result of eating or not eating the first meal of the day.
The second study was conducted by researchers at the University of Bath on people who were the correct weight or considered lean and healthy. These participants were also randomly asked to eat or abstain from breakfast and went through rigorous heath testing after 6 weeks. The results were again unchanged. The participants’ cholesterol levels, blood sugar levels and resting metabolic rates were not affected positively or negatively by the extra meal.
Researchers have concluded the opposite of what we’ve been told is true. Skipping breakfast does not make people overeat later during the day. In fact, those who skipped breakfast are likely to eat less during the course of the day than those who religiously eat it. However, the ones who didn’t have their morning meal reported feeling more tired or sluggish in the morning. They also burned fewer calories than those who did eat breakfast first thing.
So after years of being told what to do, this research may be the permission some need to ease up on the dreaded morning routine. With breakfast finally being shown as just another meal, we’ve got the choice to either like it or lump it, depending not on our desire to lose weight or do the right thing, but whether or not we feel hungry.
(Photo courtesy of Meg Lessard)