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Monday, July 6, 2009

Skipping breakfast to cut calories. Recommended?

While breakfast may be the easiest meal to skip since most people hit the ground running in the morning, it is not recommended to skip breakfast as a way to cut calories. In fact, doctors and nutritionists say it is the most important meal of the day, especially for weight loss. Studies have shown time and time again that skipping breakfast can make your brain and body a little foggy, leading you to grab sugary snacks and sugary drinks in an attempt to give yourself a boost by mid afternoon. Studies have also shown that skipping breakfast can lead to eating more calories throughout the day to make up for the loss of energy.

While skipping breakfast to cut calories is not recommended, eating a well balanced breakfast is an important factor. Instead of grabbing a pastry or pop-tart, choose a breakfast that offers the body some fiber and protein to jump start your metabolism and keep you fresh and alert throughout the day. Eggs, dairy, and low-fat meats are great sources of breakfast protein and fiber can be found in fruits, vegetables and whole grains.

If you are striving to cut calories, choose a breakfast that is nutritious without a lot of calories. Eggs are only 70 calories each and whole grain cereals can be accompanied by low-fat or fat-free milk options. In the end, eating a healthy breakfast will help you consume less calories throughout the day.






Other Posts

Organic food really is healthier
The Mediterranean Diet: A Heart Healthy Choice
The Basics on Veganism
Metabolism Myths
The Glycemic Index System for Ranking Carbohydrates



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Wednesday, June 18, 2008

Big Breakfast = Small Waistline?

Well, mom was right. She always told me to eat a nice big breakfast in the mornings, followed by a lighter lunch and dinner, to keep my weight down as I got older. I always wanted to do the opposite. Now researchers are saying that a large breakfast, followed by a lighter lunch and dinner, is the recipe for weight loss. The older I get, the more I found out that mom was right about a lot of things. I’m not sure I like it.

The study involved 96 obese, physically inactive women and consisted of two diets: low carb and big breakfast. The low carb diet consisted of only 1,085 calories per day, most of which came from protein and fat, while the big breakfast diet allowed 1,240 calories, with a lower portion of fat and more protein and carbohydrates.

In addition, those on the low carb diet made breakfast the smallest meal of the day, while the big breakfast dieters made breakfast the largest meal of the day. The big breakfast looked a little bit like this in terms of calories:

Breakfast: 610 calories

Lunch: 395 calories

Dinner: 235 calories

This information is nice, but I really wish they would have told us in their research what people ate for breakfast. Most people I know can eat a big breakfast, but the contents of that breakfast may not be so healthy.

Four months into this diet, it appeared the low carb group was winning. They had lost around 28 pounds, while the big breakfast eaters had only lost 23.

Eight months into the diet the tables had turned! The low carb dieters had gained about 18 pounds back and the big breakfast eaters had continued on to lose an average of 16 pounds more.

I wonder if this was due to the low carb dieters cheating because they were hungrier. The study doesn’t say, but the researcher who conducted the study, Dr. Jakubowicz from Virginia Commonwealth University, did say that the big breakfast people reported feeling less hungry.

I have to say that when I eat a bigger breakfast I tend to feel full most of the day and can lose weight easier. Unfortunately, breakfast time is not when I am feeling the most hungry. I can be happy with coffee and a small breakfast bar or small bowl of cereal. Many mornings I can go without it altogether, except for the coffee. I do notice that by lunch time I am ravished and instead of grabbing a light lunch, I want something hearty and fulfilling. Since I’ve skipped breakfast, I feel justified to eat more calories and heavier food for lunch. I also eat it quicker because I’m so hungry.

This all makes sense to me. I might even tell mom I read about this. Then she can say, ‘I told you so!’

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