We’ve all heard it before, that breakfast is the most important meal of the day. For years we’ve been told that skipping breakfast can lead to obesity, increased risk of chronic diseases like diabetes and hypertension and decreased brain function through out the day. But is skipping breakfast really as bad as it’s made out to be?
With busy schedules and increased social pressure to over-achieve, most Americans simply don’t find the time to eat that first meal of the day. In fact, nearly 25% of Americans regularly skip breakfast. That’s a pretty big number, and considering the fact that nearly 33% of all Americans are considered medically obese, it would make sense that skipping breakfast leads to increased weight gain. But the truth is that skipping breakfast is simply correlated to obesity (for several reasons) and isn’t the direct cause.
Let’s start with the first common notion, that eating breakfast can “boost” your metabolism and cause your body to burn more calories through out the day than it would if you had skipped breakfast. More and more, scientists agree that eating breakfast has nothing to do with resting metabolism. In fact, in a recent study, participants that did eat breakfast showed no difference in total calories burned through out the day compared to those who skipped the meal. While it’s true that eating a breakfast high in protein can up your metabolism for a few hours after eating, that doesn’t necessarily lead to sustained weight loss. The truth is that eating breakfast only leads to weight loss when paired with a healthy balanced diet.
What about the idea that skipping breakfast leads to weight gain because it increases hunger to a point where you consume more calories through out the rest of the day? This seems like it would make sense. We’ve all had those days where we forgot to eat until 2PM and then opted for a giant burger and fries to tame our raging hunger. In reality, most people who skip breakfast don’t end up making up those lost calories during other meals. A recent study found that people who skip breakfast actually consume 400 fewer calories during a day than those who do eat breakfast. But waiting to eat until your starving likely leads to unhealthy food choices, which could be a large reason as to why skipping breakfast is linked to obesity. In fact, studies have shown chronic breakfast eaters to be healthier overall and practice better habits when it comes to health and fitness.
Then there’s intermittent fasting. The practice of fasting for 16 hours with an 8 hour window for food consumption has become very popular in the world of wellness recently. Fasting in this manner has loads of proven benefits including weight loss and increased metabolic function. Most people who practice intermittent fasting tend to skip breakfast and only eat around lunch and dinner time, yet they show little to no signs of obesity and related disease. Of course, not everyone benefits from fasting. Some people experience unstable blood sugar levels, headaches, faintness, etc.
The moral of the story is, it doesn’t seem to really matter when you’re eating. What matters more is what you’re eating and eating for your body. Many of us consume far too many refined carbohydrates which create insulin spikes and ultimately slow our metabolism leading to weight gain. Eating breakfast doesn’t do us any good if it’s filled to the brim with sugar, and skipping breakfast doesn’t help us if we’re eating pizza for lunch.That’s why we created GxNutrient, to ensure that you learn how to eat for your body in order to optimize your health and boost your weight loss. The trick is to listen to your body, eat when you’re hungry, eat until you’re full, and eat nutritious and delicious foods!