Is skipping breakfast bad?
Is skipping breakfast bad? Without breakfast, your body would not start properly and you would eat more during the day than is good for you. Those are some of the myths surrounding breakfast. But is starting your day without breakfast really that bad?
It has been firmly instilled in all of us that breakfast would be an indispensable meal. Still, there are plenty of people who have trouble eating in the morning. Every digestion is different. That is why in this article we dive into breakfast and the question of whether skipping that meal really can do so much harm.
Breakfast: yes or no?
Breakfast is the first meal of the day and therefore it would be essential to get your body fired up. However, whether this is really the case has never been proven. There are studies that prove that people who skip breakfast are fatter. But recent data has also emerged, showing that breakfast eaters are heavier than those who do not eat in the morning. So what is wisdom?
Basically, breakfast is just a meal like everyone else. Food is often not about when you eat something, but more about how many calories you take in a day and whether they come from healthy food. Do you want to skip your breakfast because you really don’t feel like it or don’t miss it? It may well be that that is no problem for you. Whether you eat breakfast or not, the following guidelines are helpful to keep in mind:
Eat enough and healthy
Skipping breakfast doesn’t have to be a problem. It is important to pay attention to how many calories you consume. If you actually omit an entire meal and don’t take it all morning, you may not be eating enough during the day. This can be useful if you want to lose weight, but it can also cause problems.
That is why you should keep an eye on whether you are getting enough calories, but also enough nutrients (think of proteins, healthy fats, vitamins, and minerals). Skipping breakfast is not a problem, but make sure you end up with that meal.
Prevent binge eating
You may not be hungry early in the morning and you may not be able to eat anything. But eventually, you get hungry. That is a problem that many people who do not eat breakfast suffer from. They often opt for an unhealthy snack. That way, skipping breakfast isn’t what is unhealthy, but what you eat when you binge.
Unfortunately, your snack causes fluctuations in your blood sugar, which will make you feel even more hungry for the rest of the day. So still eat your breakfast, even if it is later in the morning. Make sure to bring something healthy to eat with you to work to avoid giving in to cravings.
Regularity in your diet
Whether you eat breakfast or not, the most important thing is a regular diet. Your body gets used to a fixed pattern. If you choose not to have breakfast, make sure you know what and when you will eat your next meal. This prevents you from eating all kinds of things without any regularity. So you can go very well without breakfast, but eat a healthy breakfast at ten o’clock and your lunch at twelve. Intermittent fasting is also an option, you can read more about that below.
Skipping breakfast as part of intermittent fasting
Skipping breakfast is basically a form of intermittent fasting, a way of eating that has been gaining popularity in recent years. This is not a diet, but you plan your meals in a different way. Fasting means fasting, so you don’t eat for a certain number of hours every day (or a few days of the week). So you eat the same amount, but at different times (during so-called eating windows). You can drink whenever you want (water, tea or coffee).
The most common intermittent fasting pattern is 8/16. You eat for 8 hours of the day and you fast for the other 16 hours. This way you can plan your meal times between 12 noon and 8 pm. For people who do not like to have breakfast or who do not have the time, this can be a solution.
Research shows that intermittent fasting can contribute to your health. It has a positive effect on your brain, it promotes the production of the human growth hormone and increases the body’s sensitivity to insulin. It can even slow down signs of aging. So if skipping breakfast fits into your diet, there are even advantages to doing so.
And that is no wonder. It is not even that long ago that our diet was much more irregular. Fasting was normal when we were hunters and gatherers. If you temporarily couldn’t find food, you had to do without it. Our entire metabolism is still geared to that.
Persistent myths about breakfast
The fear that you shouldn’t skip breakfast stems from a number of persistent myths. These can now be debunked.
- Breakfast is necessary for your metabolism
This myth assumes that when you sleep, your body goes into pause mode. As soon as you wake up, you need breakfast to get your digestion going again. Studies show that your metabolism does not come to a standstill, it just continues to provide your organs and muscles with energy. Breakfast is therefore not a requirement to start your day.
- You have to eat a certain number of meals
The idea that everyone should eat the same way (and that that is the healthiest) is wrong. There are people who eat six times a day, but also people who only eat one meal a day. When you eat is not important. We’re used to the three-meal pattern, but that doesn’t mean that’s the only way.
- If you don’t eat regularly, you can lose muscle mass
Also for your muscle mass, it does not matter when you eat. It is mainly about getting enough energy and proteins. If you are a strength athlete, it can be difficult to get your total daily amount of protein with just 1 meal. Then it may be more convenient to eat 2 or 3 meals anyway. But that is also possible if you skip your breakfast.
Which is better: to eat breakfast or not to eat breakfast?
So is skipping breakfast a bad thing? It has probably become clear to you that there is no ready-made answer to whether or not you should have breakfast. That depends on what you like yourself. If you are really hungry in the morning, breakfast is of course a good idea for you.
Didn’t your appetite wake up with you in the morning? Then you can leave breakfast. But it is a good idea to eat it later in the day. Make sure you develop an adapted rhythm, taking your breakfast later in the day. A regular diet is pleasant for your body and gives you the grip to still get all the nutrients you need. That way, skipping breakfast can’t hurt and you eat exactly the way that suits your body.