Breakfast like a king, lunch like an earl and sup like a pauper - the old adage contains sound advice, according to modern nutritionists. Skipping breakfast is bad for you, eating the wrong things for breakfast is, too. Whether you're a kid still sprouting or a fully grown specimen of the human race, food delivers the nutrients we need and breakfast happens to be particularly important because after a night's sleep our bodies are low on protein, vitamins, minerals and energy. Here are 7 reasons to tuck into breakfast with gusto:
1. Skipping Breakfast is Linked with Weight Gain
A direct scientific link has yet to be determined, but first studies suggest that people skipping breakfast habitually are more likely - 4.5 times in fact - to become overweight or obese than those who eat a healthy breakfast.
2. Breakfast Contains the Nutrients Most of Us Need
No, not fatty bacon, sausage or hash browns! Breakfast foods like wholegrain cereal smothered in milk, whole grain toast and eggs or fruit and yogurt will provide you with your daily dollop of healthy nutrition. Those who skip breakfast will have lower levels of potassium, zinc, calcium, magnesium, phosphorus, and vitamins A, B6, C and E.
3. Breakfast Helps Keeping Blood Sugar and Cholesterol Levels in Check
A small study discovered that lean, healthy women who skipped breakfast had higher blood sugar and cholesterol levels because of their fasting. This increased their risk of chronic diseases such as heart disease and diabetes. The women also tended to eat more during the day than the study subjects who had eaten a hearty breakfast.
4. Breakfast Helps Us to Balance Our Protein Levels
Instead of wolfing down most of your daily protein dose at dinner time, change your breakfast routine. Our bodies need protein to develop and maintain lean muscle tissue. If we don't get a sufficient supply during the day, muscle maintenance is not optimized. Eating lots of protein at dinner time doesn't work because our bodies can only absorb and process so much at a time. Include milk, yogurt, eggs, cheese and lean meats in your breakfast to balance protein levels correctly and you'll feel fuller for longer.
5. Protein at Breakfast is the Best Hangover Cure
Why should a plate of bacon and eggs serve as the ideal hangover cure after a boozy night out? It's because our bodies crave protein in the mornings. Proteins are broken down into individual amino acids. They help our liver to detoxify, which speeds up our recovery. Alcohol consumption depletes the number of amino acids in our bodies, which means eating a hearty bacon butty will get your amino acids working again, according to researchers at Newcastle University.
6. Skipping Breakfast Won't Make You Slimmer
You won't actually save calories by skipping breakfast. Quite the opposite! Many studies document how breakfast-scrooges tend to snack more during the day and are far more likely to end up overweight or obese.
7. Eating Protein at Breakfast Boosts Your Metabolism
Eat yourself slim? Our bodies use energy to digest food and make efficient use of the nutrients we consume. This is called the thermic effect of food (TEF). Not all foods burn up the same amount of energy though. Protein has a far higher TEF (20 - 35%) level than fat or carbs. This means a high protein intake can significantly boost our metabolism and increase the amount of calories our bodies burn, amounting to as much as 100 additional calories per day.
Do you always eat breakfast and does it contain protein?