There’s now new research on why you need a bigger breakfast. Hint: it’s going to help you lose weight
Researchers at the University of Aberdeen have found that eating a big breakfast and a smaller dinner will make you feel less hungry and aid weight loss.
The scientists on the University of Aberdeen team controlled people’s meals to compare the impact of a large breakfast and of a large dinner. They found that people burned the same calories no matter when they had their biggest meal in the day.
But the big news: Appetite was seen to be noticeably smaller after a big breakfast, which could help people stick to a diet more easily.
The topic under investigation was “chrono-nutrition” – the researchers were investigating how the food we eat is affected by the rhythms of the body’s internal clock.
One of the ideas that was under scrutiny is whether the evening is a bad time to eat because our body clock shifts our metabolism towards sleep.
How The Study Worked
Thirty volunteers had breakfast, lunch and dinner prepared for them for over two months, with the daily calories adding up to 1,700.
For the first month, they had a huge breakfast using up nearly half of those daily calories, followed by a smaller lunch and an even smaller evening meal.
The next month, the 30 volunteers had their big meal for dinner rather than at breakfast.
Their metabolism was measured precisely using doubly labelled water, which is denser than normal water and can be tracked when it is leaving the body.
Published in Cell Metabolism, the results found that the timing of a big meal made no difference to how many calories were burned, to one’s resting metabolic rate or the amount of weight they lost. Importantly, appetite or hunger levels were suppressed by a large breakfast – so that is the way to go.
But Wait Up…
Not every breakfast will do… Choose instead to have eggs, smoothies, yoghurt, mushrooms – all foods that contain plenty of protein and will help you feel full.
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