I sure do! In my opinion skipping breakfast can be one of the unhealthiest things you can do, especially if you’re trying to lose weight. In the past there’s been research favouring both sides (breakfast vs. no breakfast) , so by now you’re probably unsure of what to believe. Personally, I’m a huge fan of stuffing my face as soon as I wake up because if I don’t bad news tends to follow. I’m not going to try to force you to eat breakfast, but chances are if you’re sitting there reading this, you’re probably looking for some sort of nutritional guidance as it is. Let me explain the importance of breakfast and how it can make you feeling better than ever and maybe you’ll make your own decision to eat like a king in the morning.
Most people skip breakfast because they’re trying to lose weight with the mentality that if you skip a meal altogether that’s x amount of calories you didn’t ingest. Which in theory is true since weight loss always falls back to the equation of calorie intake vs. calorie burn no matter how you look at it. However, those same people who skip breakfast 9 times out of 10 will be starving by the time lunch comes around and therefore either eating way too much, or indulging in extremely unhealthy food. Because of this there has been research indicating that breakfast skippers are linked to obesity 4½ x more than those who eat it on a regular basis. Pretty crazy numbers aren’t they? This thought is also linked back to the idea that people who eat fewer, larger meals accumulate more body fat than those who eat smaller, more frequent meals. By eating smaller meals more frequently you really rev up your metabolism so that your body doesn’t go into starvation mode where it actually stores fat leading to weight gain.
Skipping the most important meal of the day doesn’t just have a negative impact on your body weight, but it is also linked to your concentration and overall performance. When a study was done on breakfast skippers, researchers found that they performed significantly worse on memory tests when compared to people who ate a nutritionally balanced breakfast. After a long night of fasting it only makes sense to eat so that one can recharge their brain and body, increasing both strength and endurance as well.
You might be wondering by this point: “Ok, ok, I get it. Breakfast is great for you. But what should I eat?” The greatest thing about breakfast is that it’s SO easy. You don’t need to cook up an extravagant meal like the guy you saw on Iron Chef. Truth be told, when I’m making my breakfast every morning I’m wiping my cloudy eyes as I reach for the coffee pot, and covering my yawn with the other hand. If you’re in any state to be flipping knives and juggling produce at 7am I salute you!
When it comes to eating breakfast I still follow a little rule that Men’s Health Magazine taught me at the beginning of my nutritional interest. As I make breakfast I ask myself 3 things. Is at least half of my meal from protein sources? Is the meal approximately ¼ of my days calories? Are my grain sources from whole grains? If I can answer yes to all three of those questions then I am eating a proper breakfast. The reason behind the protein, aside from its fat-burning potential, is the overall satiety it provides once consumed. When you pair it up with the fiber you receive as well from your breakfast you will feel full for such a long time. One great example of a protein source for breakfast is eggs because research says that people who consume eggs eat 20% fewer calories for the rest of the day. But there are other great lean protein options as well. When it comes to fiber, you can get great sources from fruits, vegetable, and whole grains to enclose your nutritionally complete breakfast. The trick is to make sure you’re consuming whole grains as opposed to processed grains because they release the energy from the carbohydrates a lot slower, lasting all the way until lunch and not spiking blood sugar. Plus whole grains contain more vitamins, minerals, and fiber that hasn’t been taken out like refined grains.
A typical breakfast for me would be an omelette containing 2 eggs, whatever veggies I can find in my fridge, and a whole wheat English muffin toasted with almond butter. The eggs and almond butter provide a lot of protein, and the whole wheat English muffin along with the veggies helps my vitamin and mineral intake as well as fiber. I can honestly say that the meal itself keeps me nice and full for 3 hours AT LEAST.
Also try to keep in mind when thinking breakfast that healthy behaviour begets more healthy behaviour. So if you decide to eat in the morning chances are you will think more about healthy choices as the day goes on. If you follow the idea I’ve presented then you will have a more nutritionally complete diet which leads to optimal health.