So, did you? This morning? Yesterday morning? Or are you one of those “I’m just not hungry in the morning”-types? Maybe it’s “I don’t like breakfast foods”, or “I can only drink my coffee in the morning”? In my experience, those who do eat breakfast never miss a day, and those who don’t eat breakfast never do.
Yes, I know you heard it over and over again as a kid that breakfast is the “most important meal of the day”. Quite possibly the only thing those Saturday morning cartoons told us that was actually true. Here’s why:
- Eating a fiber-rich breakfast provides you with more energy and higher alertness. A study published in the International Journal of Food Sciences and Nutrition found that a breakfast high in fiber resulted in a longer period of time before subsequent feelings of hunger returned. Interestingly, the study speculated that, “in the absence of hunger, it may be easier for a person to focus on their work activities rather than their grumbling stomach”.
- Skinny people eat breakfast. Fact. “Skipping breakfast [is] associated with a significantly higher risk of obesity”, cites a study conducted and published by the American Journal of Epidemiology. Further noted, “Subjects who regularly skipped breakfast had 4.5 times the risk of obesity as those who regularly consumed breakfast”. Enough said.
- Breakfast eaters have lower cholesterol than non-breakfast eaters. Research has found that, on average, those who eat breakfast consume about 100 calories less during the remainder of the day. Not only that: healthy women participating in this study developed higher LDL (bad) cholesterol levels and became less sensitive to insulin (a precursor to diabetes) after having skipped breakfast for two weeks.
- Breakfast food encourages a more nutritious start to your day. Yogurt, eggs, fruit, oatmeal- what’s not to love? Improving your consumption of protein will get you on the fast track to losing weight and building muscle (which also burns fat).
Here’s the deal: not everyone loves breakfast like I do. It’s my sole motivation for getting out of bed every day. “Yay, it’s time for breakfast!” is oftentimes the first thought that crosses my foggy mind every morning (that, and maybe a couple of choice words for that sadistic alarm clock beside me). If you are absolutely against the idea of having a full meal before the sun rises, start small. Try half a yogurt. Half a protein bar. An apple. A small shake you prepared the night before. Just enough to boost your energy and stimulate your body’s engine.
Who knows? Maybe you’ll avoid that nasty blood sugar crash during your morning workout. Maybe your good mood will still be intact by the time you get to the office. Perhaps you’ll lose that stubborn five pounds you’ve been lugging around since Thanksgiving. And maybe, just maybe, you’ll start to like it. Even a little.
Jodilyn Stuart is the owner of ModaBody Fitness and has been a fitness professional since 1997. She currently contributes to 303 Magazine as a Fitness and Health writer. If you have questions, feel free to email at: [email protected]