All meals play an equal role in keeping us healthy, with food the essential source of energy and nutrition. However, there is a division between claims that state breakfast is essential versus skipping breakfast altogether. Justifications are easy. Late for work, not hungry, hangover, ate too much yesterday, no time, etc.
The general perception is that there are no benefits to deleting breakfast from your morning regime.
Your metabolism works 24/7, so breakfast doesn’t kick start your metabolism, but having irregular eating patterns disrupts the metabolic process and it is important to regulate your appetite, with three nutritional meals every day.
What are the pros and cons?
Before you start skipping breakfast; consider the following.
1. If you do not provide breakfast nourishment to your body, there are scientific studies that prove metabolic and liver disorders.
2. A lack of glucose in your blood makes it harder to concentrate because the brain is fuelled by glucose. Eating breakfast gives your brain the glucose energy to clear the morning brain fog.
3. Morning bowel movements are regulated with breakfast stimulating your stomach and intestines. Turmeric Australia advocates using ‘Gutsy’ in your morning smoothie, to cleanse the digestive system, improve gut health and remove impurities.
4. Your core body temperature drops as you sleep. Eating breakfast restores circulation.
5. A wholesome breakfast permits you to keep a balance with food eaten later in the day. Miss breakfast, then come that 10:00 am coffee break, you will find yourself reaching for biscuits and savouries.
6. Eating breakfast maintains blood sugar levels and balances the insulin. Studies by the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition discovered people who missed breakfast ultimately had higher blood sugar than those who did eat breakfast. Even if you eat something light, this will help restore glycogen. Glycogen serves as a buffer to maintain blood-glucose levels. Foods you should avoid include cereals, pancakes, muffins, fruit juice, croissants – anything loaded with sugar or in a packet. These foods will process rapidly in your body, leaving you hungry soon after and more inclined to snack.
7. A balanced breakfast aligns with the body’s arcadian rhythms making you more alert and less moody.
8. Experts advocate a fibre-rich breakfast, with healthy fats, fruit and vegetables. Try Turmeric Australia for ‘Super Greens’. They are an excellent source of digestive enzymes and fibre which is essential for colon health.
9. A protein breakfast is highly recommended. A protein meal increases levels of tyrosine (a building block for dopamine) in the brain. This decreases food cravings and overeating later in the day. Foods good for breakfast include eggs, Greek yogurt, avocado, oatmeal, berries, nuts and green tea.
10. It is also about the absorption of vitamins and minerals for optimum body function. Eating breakfast must be nutritionally substantial.
11. There is a wide belief that skipping breakfast means you will eat fewer calories that day, but the opposite is the case, though there is a disparity in studies on this topic.
12. While sleeping your body has been in a fasting state, using the energy that was stored in the liver. To give the body new energy, it is vital to eat breakfast fuel. It is an opportunity to replenish the nutrient stores used during sleep.
13. Studies show eating breakfast encourages energy levels and prevents fatigue. Even improved mental health has been studied in those that breakfast regularly.
14. Heart disease, osteoporosis, mood swings, low energy, hormone stress, high cholesterol and weight gain are some of the disadvantages linked to skipping breakfast.
15. You should eat nutritious food every four hours to keep your metabolism working smoothly. Missing breakfast puts an unconscious thought into your brain that you can eat more food at other mealtimes. This encourages the repetition of unhealthy eating.
On the other side of the debate is the advantages perceived with fasting and not eating breakfast. Intermittent fasting is gaining popularity. Short, fast periods of 8-24 hours are being reviewed as beneficial to disease prevention, except that heart burn may be a disadvantage.
1. The intestinal system needs to rest sometimes. It takes 18 hours to process food you eat. By skipping breakfast, you give the digestive system a break. Fasting is an effective method to flush unwanted toxins.
2. Thinking that fasting slows your metabolism is a myth, because your body responds to the stress of fasting by enhancing hormone function and burns fat for energy.
3. Studies compared breakfast fasting and the benefits were reduced blood sugar levels, cholesterol and insulin, with more energy.
4. Fasting helps decrease inflammation, regulate glucose, improve blood pressure and heart rate. It is particularly effective if you have Type 2 diabetes – be mindful that you don’t replace the missed meal with snacks later in the day.
5. By fasting, you are training your body to rely on other sources of energy for fuel – your body fat – and this may mean stable energy throughout the day.
6. When you eat, your body focuses on digesting, so by skipping breakfast, your body may gain mental alertness.
7. Preparing your body to only eat when hungry is a good way to prevent extra calorie intake. You just may not feel like eating first thing in the morning.
8. Skipping breakfast calories doesn’t mean you will get hungry and overeat. Overindulging at night is what is really bad for you, because you keep the body working on metabolic processes, when it should be winding down for the night.
9. There is a tendency towards higher blood cholesterol levels if you skip breakfast – a risk factor for heart disease.