New research claims skipping breakfast could help you lose weight

Phillip Cunningham
February 2, 2019

We've been told for decades that breakfast is the most important meal of the day, especially for those watching their weight.

The researchers of the investigation meant to worry upon past examinations that asserted having breakfast may help with weight loss; in any case, no huge contrast was seen in metabolic rates between breakfast eaters and skippers. Some research indicates optimum health outcomes if you open the eating window early in the day and close it early in the day - so time-restricted eaters may not be better off skipping breakfast. These studies are usually observational, though, meaning they only look for indirect associations between two things (in this example, eating or skipping breakfast and weight loss or less obesity) in a decent-sized group of people.

In fact, the researchers found that those who ate breakfast actually consumed more calories - an average of 260 more calories a day - compared with those who skipped breakfast, regardless of their usual breakfast habits.

Additionally, there was little difference in effect of breakfast on normal and overweight people.

Study authors conclude that, "Currently, the available evidence does not support modifying diets in adults to include the consumption of breakfast as a good strategy to lose weight".

However, the authors stress that the quality of the evaluated studies is not very high.

Previous research has shown weight loss benefits of sticking to a morning meal.

However, Spector (himself a breakfast eater) acknowledged that time-restricted feeding is a "young discipline" that may only prove effective for "certain people".

In the new review, the researchers analyzed information from 13 previous studies in which participants were randomly assigned to either eat breakfast or skip breakfast.

She stressed that people should "follow what suits their bodies best", whether that is eating breakfast every day and cutting down on calories if they want to lose weight or, if they are not hungry in the mornings, simply skipping the morning meal. "It has the same impact on your calorie intake if you have it for breakfast as though you have it at 4pm".

It's always important to discuss diet plans or changes with a GP or health professional.

But she also noted that there is no one-size-fits-all solution to eating breakfast.

Dana Hunnes, a senior dietitian at the Ronald Reagan UCLA Medical Center in Los Angeles, who was not involved in the review, said that its conclusions don't appear strong enough to warrant recommending for or against skipping breakfast.

It said eating breakfast regularly could have other important effects, such as improved concentration and attentiveness levels in children. Research has shown that regularly eating a healthy breakfast (think fruits, veggies, and whole grains) helps kids and teens develop normally and stay sharp in school.

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