The breakfast myth – Is breakfast sabotaging your diet?
Common wisdom says you should have breakfast first thing in the morning, take a large bowl of healthy cereal to “activate your metabolism”. Have that toast, donuts, pancakes, muffins, oatmeal, milk and juice…
… except those are terrible choices is your goal is to build a strong, lean body!
Let’s take a moment to unlearn everything we know about breakfast.
Breakfast is NOT the most important meal of the day
Food companies have invested millions to convince us that breakfast is essential. The habit of breakfast has been manufactured by the modern food industry.
“Healthy” products are pushed to us, as manufacturers try to convince us that sugar-coated cereal is the natural choice.
When we wake up, our body is in a ketogenic (fat-burning) state. That’s when your body’s best at burning the extra fat you have. Interrupt it with a sugar-loaded breakfast, and you’ll be keeping that extra fat around your waist.
You don’t need breakfast first thing in the morning
No, despite what everyone says, you don’t need to eat first-thing in the morning to “activate your metabolism.”
In fact, our bodies have evolved to work well after short periods without eating. Think of our ancestors, who didn’t have easy access to food when waking up. When you don’t eat for 12-16 hours, your body responds by actually giving you more energy to motivate you to go out and find food.
That means that if your last meal was at 9pm, you should be able to not eat until 1pm next day without a problem.
This period of fasting help you cleanse your body, burn additional fat and produce growth-hormone with all its beneficial effects.
Healthier breakfast choices
Having cereal and milk is heavy in sugar and other carbohydrates, and can be detrimental to your fat loss goal. Read the nutrition labels to see the high amounts of sugar in a typical breakfast!
Eating a low-carb breakfast can help you stay full for longer, and keep constant energy during the day.
Try new recipes combining eggs, spinach, mushrooms, vegetables, ham, deli meat, sausages, bacon or cottage cheese… Unsweetened tea of coffee can help you control your appetite.
If you’re pressed for time, you can even keep pre-boiled eggs in your fridge, keep tomatoes around for a quick salad, or even have dinner leftovers for breakfast.
Because a low-carb breakfast won’t provoke sugar spikes in your blood, they’ll also help you keep your cravings under control.
Breakfast can make you hungry
Especially for leaner people, having breakfast can result in you feeling very hungry around noon.
The nutritionist Martin Berkhan has an in-depth article about the hormonal reasons that trigger post-breakfast hunger.
If you’ve ever found that you’re starving and irritable before lunch, even after a generous breakfast, skipping breakfast might eliminate those hunger pangs.
It’s fine to skip breakfast
If the idea of skipping breakfast makes you cringe, just consider taking baby steps:
- Try a low-carb breakfast as described above.
- You’ll feel more energetic immediately.
- Try having breakfast later than usual, mid-morning.
- Try replacing breakfast with unsweetened coffee or tea.
- The first days it will be hard to kick the habit, but…
- After you’ve done it for a week, it’ll become natural!
Because you’re skipping breakfast, you’re tricking yourself into eating less calories and that will help you become leaner. You will also benefit from all the effects of an intermittent fast.
If you don’t want to fully skip breakfast, going with the low-carb options we recommend will also give you a huge boost.
Many people feel great after making this small change. Try it for a week and decide for yourself.