Skipping breakfast is part of many weight loss routines, often associated with the thought of cutting calories. The all too common impression is mistaken and there's lots of evidence, that eating a healthy breakfast, every day, is the fastest way to lose weight and keep it off. Those who skip that oh-so-essential morning meal end up being starved by mid-morning and more vulnerable to snacking that ends up having them take in more calories for the day.
Eating breakfast daily is a healthy habit for all those who have successfully lost weight and who are listed with the National Weight Control Registry Of Canada. These people have kept 30 pounds (or more) off for at least a year, some for as long as six years.
The Evidence against Skipping Breakfast
Most of these people (78%) reported making the time for breakfast every morning, and almost 90% said they ate breakfast at least five days of the week. This suggests that starting the day with a meal is an important strategy for losing weight and keeping it off.
Eating early in the morning allows us to refrain from "starvation eating" later in the day. What's more, it also jumps starts your metabolism. When you skip breakfast, you're undertaking a 15 to 20 hour fast, which causes the body not to produce the enzymes needed to metabolize fat to lose weight. Among those she works with professionally, breakfast eaters are usually people who have lost a lot of weight.
What more you ask? A pair of studies appearing in the Journal of the American Dietetic Association support this idea. Although the work was funded by cereal companies, dietitians say studies like this drive home the message that breakfast is important to weight loss.
Breakfast is where fruits, veggies and whole grains can be a part of the meal. High fibre foods fill you up, and they bring less fat into the body.
Foods like oatmeal, strawberries, walnuts and low-fat yoghurt are high fibre, low energy density choices that let you eat more and take in fewer calories.
Here are a few Breakfast Ideas that Ought to Aid you in your Weight Loss Journey:
- 1 cup of oatmeal, ½ cup low-fat milk, 1 cup sliced strawberries, 1 tablespoon of walnuts fills you up and brings only 307 calories.
- Two multi-grain waffles, with 1 cup blueberries, 3 tablespoons light syrup, 1 cup plain low-fat yoghurt has about 450 calories in all. That's almost equal to the standard bagel-and-cream-cheese breakfast - except that it's much more food in terms of volume and is much lower in fat.
- Peanut butter and banana, eggs, low-fat yoghurt/milk, frozen blueberries or peaches and canned (in their juices) are other good-for-you choices. If you have time, make a small tortilla with a few tablespoons of peanut butter and chopped strawberries that you can roll and serve or take along.
- Breakfast smoothies, berries, ice and milk/yoghurt are tasty, healthy options. They go anywhere, fill you up with good stuff and get your day off to a nutritious start. Use granola (read labels carefully) in the low-fat version as a condiment, not the main dish.
- Smaller bagels (hockey puck size) with almond or cashew butter, or if you must, low-fat cream cheese. Jam or sliced strawberries are delicious toppings. Or you could always go old school with a manuka honey topping.
Even if you can't choose healthy breakfast options, getting something to eat at the start of the day is better than eating nothing at all when looking for the fastest way to lose weight. If you find yourself tempted by the fast-food breakfast sandwiches, choose whole-grain English muffins, a cooked egg, low-fat cheese on top, with the ham or bacon optional. If you want, you could also add a dash of raw honey just to make it taste just a little bit better, that too is entirely up to your tastes.