Growing up, you probably heard a lot about the importance of breakfast, right? But maybe you also heard you don’t need it. So, what’s the deal? Is breakfast really an essential part of a healthy lifestyle? We’re breaking it down with MYX Coaches Lauren and Davanna, and a little help from this thing called science.
Do I need to eat breakfast to be healthy?
You might have heard people who eat breakfast weigh less and have a reduced risk for certain health issues. Well, science says it’s more complicated than that. Research shows eating breakfast will not prevent disease or help you lose weight. Instead, the type of people who eat breakfast may be more likely to follow other healthy habits like exercising and eating on a consistent schedule.
“Consistency is so important!” says Coach Lauren. “We have an internal clock and circadian rhythm that goes hand in hand with our eating schedule. When we eat on an irregular timeline or late at night, we may throw off this internal clock,” she says. So, whether you eat breakfast or not is less important than eating on a regular schedule.
Are there benefits to skipping breakfast?
Some people give up breakfast for intermittent fasting, which is when you only eat during a specific window of the day. Studies show that in addition to weight loss, intermittent fasting may have health benefits, like reducing inflammation and preventing chronic diseases. Of course, you don’t need to skip breakfast to try intermittent fasting — there are a variety of fasting types and schedules. Other people skip breakfast for fasted cardio, or exercising on an empty stomach, often in the morning. Some studies suggest this helps you burn fat at a higher rate, but more research needs to be done. Like the benefits linked to eating breakfast, the benefits linked to skipping it can be credited to other factors, like following a consistent eating schedule.
Is breakfast right for me?
If you wake up hungry, then a healthy breakfast is probably the best choice. Mayo Clinic recommends a combination of fruits and veggies, whole grains, lean protein, and low-fat dairy. If you don’t experience morning hunger, or the thought of food makes your stomach turn, then breakfast may not be important for you. If you don’t feel hungry in the morning because you normally eat late dinners, Coach Lauren suggests giving breakfast another try. Eating late at night, according to the Cleveland Clinic, may negatively impact cardiovascular health, and the way your body stores fat. “You can work towards resetting your internal clock by shifting your meals earlier so you’re hungry for dinner at a healthier time,” says Coach Lauren. Have a weak stomach first thing in the morning? “Try a breakfast smoothie! They’re a lot easier on your stomach,” says Coach Davanna.
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