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We hear it all the time, “Eat breakfast to lose weight!” “Don’t skip breakfast or your metabolism will slow down!”  “Breakfast is the most important meal of the day!”  But is it?

In the latest study, a 16-week clinical trial published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, researchers found that eating or skipping breakfast did not affect the study participants’ weight loss one way or the other.  “We found it didn’t really make a difference,” study author David B. Allison, a professor of public health and associate dean for science at the University of Alabama at Birmingham, told CBS News.

So what does this mean?  Should we skip breakfast all together?

“Long-term, [skipping breakfast] is not the best strategy,” Keith Ayoob, an associate clinical professor of pediatrics and director of the Nutrition Clinic at the Children’s Evaluation and Rehabilitation Center, Albert Einstein College of Medicine in New York, who was not involved in the study, told CBS News. “You may not want to eat breakfast, but you need all the nutrients that breakfast can provide.”

So is it okay to skip breakfast from time to time without having any real consequences?  Yes.  Do I find it effective to skip breakfast all the time?  No.  Here’s why.  Several of my clients have mentioned time and time again that when they eat a nutritious breakfast they have less cravings later in the day.  When people skip breakfast, I find they want more sugar-laden, higher carb and fat meals later in the day.  Especially when they go hours without eating.  Depending on the time they ate dinner and skipped breakfast you’re already looking at 12 or more hours that our bodies have gone without food.  Whatever you do, do NOT skip breakfast and lunch!

Alright, so what should we eat if we decide to have breakfast?  I definitely think it’s highly effective when there’s a protein source thrown in there.  Some examples of this might include:

Eggs with a slice of toast and berries

Egg Omelette with spinach and a side of fruit

or

Even an egg white omelette at Mcdonalds.  I would suggest this as a last resort but if you’re hungry and have to hit a drive through opt for this.

I also suggest NOT to eat a high sugar breakfast because I can promise you that you’ll be reaching for another carb source an hour or two later.  Why? Because when we eat something that’s high in sugar and low in protein, our blood sugar will spike, then drop dramatically.  With the protein, we release a nice steady flow of blood sugar regulation and have less cravings for something sweet.  Plus, protein keeps us full longer than a bowl of high sugar cereal.

To wrap up, skipping breakfast is not the end all and doing so occasionally will not hinder our weight loss efforts.  However, try not to do it long term and get into the habit of skipping breakfast all together.  When choosing breakfast aim for that source of protein such as eggs, lean turkey or sausage to regulate your blood sugar and prevent less cravings.

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