Breakfast 'does not help you lose weight'

Pearl Mccarthy
February 1, 2019

Still, at the very least, the results suggest that caution is needed when recommending breakfast for people trying to lose weight, "as it could have the opposite effect", the researchers said.

Cicuttini's team pooled results from 13 clinical trials from high-income countries, mainly the United States and the UK, from the last 28 years.

In addition, people who ate breakfast weighted about 1 lb.

However, the researchers did note that eating breakfast regularly could have other important effects aside from weight loss, such as improved concentration and attentiveness levels in children.

"But plan what you have as it's far better to take breakfast with you than to grab a chocolate muffin and a latte from the nearest coffee shop when you get hungry later".

Maintaining a healthy body weight is important for overall wellbeing and for avoiding certain illnesses - but weight isn't the only marker of good health, and shouldn't be your only consideration when it comes to making decisions about food.

Registered dietitian Dana White, from Quinnipiac University in Hamden, Conn., said, "Maybe for those people who are anti-breakfast, this review gives reassurance that maybe skipping breakfast won't sabotage weight loss".

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According to researchers from Monash University in Melbourne, Australia, there is little to no evidence to support the idea that breakfast helps with weight loss. Those who ate breakfast also ate more calories per day - about 260 more on average. That doesn't necessarily mean that you should skip breakfast if it's part of your daily habits - rather, there's no strong evidence to justify forcing yourself to eat breakfast as part of a weight less effort.

Prof Cicuttini explains that the focus should be not placed on when we eat our largest meal of the day - whether it's at lunch or breakfast - but on total daily calorie content.

"The study shows that simply having breakfast isn't a magic recipe for weight loss for everyone".

It has always been regarded as the most important meal of the day, providing people with sustenance and energy for the activities that lay ahead and to ensure a healthy weight. Past observational studies have suggested that eating breakfast may be associated with a lower body weight, but the new study - which looked at existing research - found that people who skipped breakfast weighed less. Some people like breakfast and some don't.

The researchers also found no significant difference in metabolic rates between breakfast eaters and breakfast skippers - suggesting there is no evidence that eating it may help with weight loss due to "efficient" burning of calories earlier in the day.

Eating breakfast won't make you slim if you're knocking back a bowl of sugar disguised as cereal, or a full English (which can tally at 800-1000 calories, far above the 200-400 in a serving of cereal). 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. But he said the findings suggested it was "just another diet myth". Furthermore, despite common belief, skipping breakfast was not linked to people feeling hungrier in the afternoon.

But experts say a healthy breakfast can be a good source of calcium and fibre.

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