Getting up in the morning is a struggle for many. Hitting the snooze button many times, before you finally deciding to step out of the comfort of the bed. After this, everything becomes a blur. Between rushing to take a shower and getting dressed, breakfast usually takes a back-seat. Statistics indicate that a good percentage of people do not have time for breakfast in the morning. Without a proper breakfast to kickstart your day, it is like running on fuel reserve. There is absolutely no certainty of performing the tasks of the day optimally.
Eat breakfast like a king, lunch like a prince and dinner like a pauper. This has been a much-loved mantra of parents everywhere. However not many actually follow this. Blaming it on lack of time won’t cut it anymore. Habits are difficult to break but, the habit of skipping breakfast is definitely a deal-breaker for good health. Breakfast literally means to break a night long fast as we get a good nights rest. Health experts and nutritionists everywhere advise that breakfast is eaten within two hours of waking up. This will provide you with the necessary nutrients, fiber, as well as protein that you need.
Most youngsters who want to keep their weight in check, conveniently skip breakfast and then somehow power through until lunchtime. During this time, they find themselves easily distracted, tired, groggy and sometimes even thinking continuously about food. A good number of breakfast skippers confess to eating foods high in sugar and carbs to sort of satisfy the hunger pangs. On the other hand, those who had a good breakfast was able to withstand such temptations and were able to adhere to their diet restrictions better.
Let’s look at what research findings on breakfast indicate
Diabetic patients – eat your breakfast
Those diagnosed with type-2 diabetes, especially those with obesity are found to benefit a lot from a high-energy breakfast. It was found to help with weight loss and also improve the symptoms of diabetes. Did you know that a slice of bread eaten in the morning is less fattening than the same bread slice eaten in the evening?! Shocking, but true! This is because, food - what we eat, how much we eat and even when we eat has a big impact on our health. The body’s metabolism changes throughout the day.
The traditional diet prescribed for those who want to lose weight and for diabetic patients is “6 small meals in a day”. The researchers at Tel Aviv University were able to study the impact of a heavy breakfast in obese and diabetic patients. They compared the results with that of the results obtained by following the traditional diabetic diet. The participants were divided into 2 groups. All the people in the study had obesity and type-2 diabetes. The first group ate three standard meals in a day, which included a large breakfast, medium lunch followed by a small-sized dinner. The second group followed the traditional diet which was six small meals that were spaced out evenly. The results after 3 months came as a surprise to those who followed the traditional diet. It resulted in gaining about 3 pounds and the other group losing about 11 pounds! Who would’ve thought that a large breakfast would have such a profound impact on weight loss!
In addition to weight loss, the first group fared better in other aspects as well. This included decreased fasting blood glucose levels and overall mean glucose levels. They also showed lesser carbohydrate craving and decreased hunger. In other words, this group was better satiated.
School meals not helping with kids skipping breakfast
Research conducted by the University of Waterloo have revealed that having meal plans in place has not helped breakfast skipping tendencies in children. About 42,000 students participated in the study and it was found that a staggering 39% of children ate breakfast lesser than 3 days in a school week! The rise in breakfast skipping trends could cause a lot of problems like inability to concentrate and even unhealthy food habits leading to obesity.
Breakfast - a simple answer to decreasing fat deposits in the body
It is a well-known fact that insulin works less efficiently in obese people. This means that the fat composition of the body indirectly affects the body’s capability to regulate blood sugar. A research was conducted on adults and divided them into two groups. One group was asked to eat breakfast every day while the other fasted until mid-day. The breakfast group was asked to consume breakfast of 350 calories within two hours of waking and about 700 calories by about 11 am every day for 6 weeks. The fasting group, on the other hand, had absolutely no food until midday, so in effect zero calories.
The findings revealed that people who regularly ate breakfast had the ability to decrease the activity of genes responsible for metabolizing fat. Such people were also found to have lower diabetes and cardiovascular risk.
Muesli helps you fight arthritis
The University of Erlangen-Nuremberg recently did some research on the impact of a fiber-rich diet on inflammatory diseases like arthritis. Breakfast muesli is rich in fiber. So when healthy gut bacteria break it down, it leads to the formation of propionate and butyrate. These fatty acids are found in the fluid present in the joints of the body. A fiber-rich diet is a bacteria-friendly diet. So more healthy bacteria means better break down of fiber. A better breakdown of fiber-rich food has the benefits of slower bone degradation. So eat your fiber-rich breakfast muesli for better bone and joint health
Breakfast quickie tips
For those who do not have a lot of time in the morning. Here are a few quick recipes that will kickstart you for the day.
- If you fall into the category of those skip breakfasts because they hate “eating” soon after they get up, but hardly have time to eat before heading out the doors. Then smoothies could be your best friend in the mornings. Whip up a smoothie by throwing in your favorite fruits and nuts with coconut water or milk. This is done in just a few seconds and you are good to go.
- Making oats and nuts power balls during the weekends can make for a power-packed breakfast!
- If you are an absolute fan of eggs then microwave egg recipes are definitely worth a try!
- You can also make breakfast muffins, mini frittatas or burgers and freeze them. You can try them out every day. This way you won't get bored like you do when you have cereals every morning.