Breakfast has been labelled as the most important meal of the day, but an increasing number of people choose to go out into the world without it because they haven’t any time or just don’t feel like it. Skipping breakfast is a huge mistake and here’s why.
Weight Control – Research suggests those who don’t eat in the morning are likely to have difficulty with weight management. A healthy weight is maintained, in part, by balancing blood sugar levels. Fluctuations are caused by skipping meals or having an excessive amount of unhealthy food. Skipping breakfast causes dips in blood sugar, which can force the body into starvation mode where it digests lean muscle and, in an attempt to conserve energy, slows metabolism. Later on in the day, a desire for quick and easy high calorie foods with little nutritional benefit kicks in. These spike blood sugar levels, and aid unhealthy weight gain as the body stores some of the excess glucose ingested as fat.
Performance – According to the World Health Organization, adequate nutrition can boost productivity levels by up to 20%. Because most students are fairly active in the morning, it makes sense to obtain said nutrients from the first meal of the day. People who eat breakfast have higher energy levels, are less likely to feel tired quickly and have an easier time concentrating than those who don’t. Although there has been some debate in the past on the affect breakfast has on the quality of performance, a ground-breaking study carried out at the University of Cardiff revealed that, students who ate breakfast were twice as likely to perform above average academically.
Wellbeing – Eating breakfast has often been cited as an integral part of healthy living, and for good reason. Various studies have been carried out linking it to reduction in incidence of heart disease, improved memory and decrease in risk of diabetes. Add to this the fact that the morning is the best time for absorption of valuable nutrients required to function efficiently throughout the day and you’ve got more than enough reasons to make the time to eat!
At this point, you know why choosing to forgo breakfast isn’t the brightest idea. How can you get the most from your first meal of the day then? Firstly, sugary foods like pastries and ‘healthy’ breakfast bars are a no-go. These cause high blood sugar peaks and short-lived energy boosts that you’ll inevitably crash down from. Rather have complex carbohydrates, or slow-releasing foods. As the name suggests, these slow the release of sugar into the blood allowing you to keep going all morning. Such foods include oats and whole-grain cereals. Lastly, balance is best for breakfast or any meal for that matter. This means you should be aiming to include protein, carbohydrates and fat in whatever you choose to eat. An example would be avocado and boiled egg on rye toast.
If you’ve gotten to the end of this piece, you no longer have any excuses not to have breakfast. Not only does it help weight management, it increases productivity and boosts general wellbeing. Would you rather spare 15 minutes in the morning or allow your body to eat itself slowly?