WHY IS BREAKFAST SO IMPORTANT?
I'm huge on breakfast!! I will book time in the morning for it.
It usually means getting up only 20 minutes earlier, but starting the day on a better tune. Otherwise, how many of you start snitching bad stuff instead? Like hitting the snack machine? Or worse, I've seen people get to work early (and claim it as work time) and sit there eating their cereal. What image does this create for your employees or for your boss? These days with jobs getting more and more competitive, I'm not sure you want to take this "risk".
Consumer Reports had a bit in one of their articles that sums up the metabolism aspects:
The time between dinner and the next morning’s meal is the longest your body goes without food, breakfast has an effect on you that’s different from any other meal. Eating within 2 hours of waking can make a difference in the way you metabolize glucose, or blood sugar, all day. Your glucose level rises every time you eat, and your pancreas produces insulin to shuttle the glucose into your cells, where it’s used for energy. Research is finding that keeping glucose and insulin in the right balance has important effects on metabolism and health.
“After a healthy breakfast your blood sugar increases a little bit, but it will take a while for your body to absorb it,” says Eric Rimm, Sc.D., a professor of epidemiology and nutrition at the Harvard School of Public Health in Boston. “So you might not be hungry for lunch for 5 hours.”
If you don’t bother with breakfast, though, the prolonged fasting might lead to a bigger than normal boost in “hunger hormones” such as ghrelin, encouraging you to overeat at your next meal and leading to spikes and dips in glucose. “Over time, if your pancreas is constantly producing insulin to compensate for high levels of glucose, it will burn out and you’ll develop diabetes" Rimm says.
What you eat is important, of course. If your idea of breakfast is a doughnut and a cup of coffee, or sugary cereal and a glass of fruit juice, you’re setting the stage for metabolic havoc.
On todaysdietician.com, they have a great article on breakfast.....some of it :
Many have heard the adage that “breakfast is the most important meal of the day,” but how many of them actually take it to heart?
According to a survey conducted by the International Food Information Council Foundation, 93% of Americans agree with that statement, yet fewer than one-half eat breakfast regularly. So just how important is eating breakfast to good health? Study after study suggests that eating a nutritious breakfast offers health benefits that range from improved concentration to a reduced risk of obesity and diabetes.
Despite the nutrients breakfast provides, the morning meal isn’t a part of the daily routine for many children and adolescents, who skip breakfast more than any other meal.1 Data from the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANES) 2001-2002 indicate that 13% to 14% of children aged 6 to 11 and 30% to 31% aged 12 to 19 skip breakfast on any given day. Breakfast consumption generally decreases with age,1 with the most dramatic decline beginning at age 15, when social life takes precedence and weight control becomes a priority, especially among girls.2 Unsurprisingly, girls skip the morning meal more often than boys do, and that gap widens with age as well.3
Moreover, budget and time constraints make skipping breakfast even more common. Surveys show skipping breakfast is more prevalent among some low socioeconomic groups.4
Potential Health Consequences
Studies consistently show that skipping breakfast can have negative health consequences for children, adolescents, and adults. Breakfast skippers generally fail to make up for the nutrients they miss at breakfast. As a result, those who eat breakfast have better overall eating habits, compared with those who don’t eat breakfast, and have higher intakes of protein, calcium, vitamin C, zinc, iron, and fiber and lower fat intakes.1,3,4 In fact, calcium and fiber were identified as “nutrients of concern” in the 2010 US Dietary Guidelines for Americans.
Many people, especially girls and older teens, skip breakfast in an effort to lose weight. But research suggests that skipping breakfast more likely will cause weight gain rather than weight loss.3 In fact, among adolescents, skipping breakfast is strongly associated with overweight and obesity.5
While children and adolescents who eat breakfast tend to consume more calories than those who don’t over the course of a day, they’re less likely to gain weight, but this research finding could be due to underreporting of food intake by those who skip breakfast.3,4,6 An analysis of breakfast frequency and changes in body weight among adolescents over five years that was published in Pediatrics reported that the frequency of breakfast consumption was significantly inversely associated with weight gain: the less frequently breakfast was consumed, the stronger the association with weight gain.3
Carol O’Neil, PhD, MPH, RD, LDN, a professor at Louisiana State University and breakfast researcher, says children and adolescents should be provided with and encouraged to eat healthful food options such as whole grains, fruit, vegetables, low-fat dairy, and lean protein. “These foods should be available and children and adolescents should know how to prepare them if necessary,” she says.
Moreover, studies show that skipping breakfast is associated with markers of insulin resistance.7 One study found that men who skipped breakfast had a 21% higher risk of developing type 2 diabetes compared with men who ate breakfast.8 The 2010 Dietary Guidelines pointed out that consuming a nutrient-rich breakfast is associated with weight loss and weight-loss maintenance, and according to the National Weight Control Registry, almost eight in 10 adults who maintain a weight loss of at least 30 lbs for at least one year eat breakfast every day.
Several studies also have found that children and adolescents perform better in school if they eat breakfast, but according to O’Neil, not all the studies have been well designed, so the jury still may be out on that conclusion. She says the same is true for adults, who have been studied even less. But she still emphasizes the importance of eating a healthful breakfast each morning to ensure kids and teens perform well in school.
A recent study used MRI to assess brain signals controlling food motivation and reward-driven eating behavior, and found that these signals were reduced following a high-protein breakfast—evidence that breakfast may be a valuable strategy to control appetite and regulate food intake.5
There are no recommendations for the percentage of daily calories that should come from breakfast in the 2010 Dietary Guidelines. But the characteristics of the “ideal breakfast” have been described as one that includes healthful foods balanced in both macro- and micronutrients, such as whole grains, fruits or fruit juices, low-fat milk products, or other sources of calcium, and provides 20% to 35% of daily calories.11