What happens to your body when you skip breakfast?

Photo credit: Hearst Communications, Inc. All rights reserved
Photo credit: Hearst Communications, Inc. All rights reserved

From Cosmopolitan UK

Breakfast can divide people into two camps. Those who simply skip it or those who wake up ravenous in search of the nearest avocado on toast.

But is breakfast really the most important meal of the day? And what does happen to your body if you forget to eat it?

Experts have often said that those who eat breakfast are less likely to overeat and their metabolisms will be kick started for the day.

But recent studies have't found any difference in weight between those who eat breakfast and those who don't. The American Heart Association found that breakfast eaters tended to have lower rates of heart disease, high blood pressure and high cholesterol. But the results weren't strong enough to suggest people who don't normally eat breakfast should start.

Now, a new study in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition has looked into what happens to your body if you skip breakfast. Researchers at the University of Hohenheim in Germany tested 17 healthy adults on three different days.

Once when they had skipped breakfast, once when they had three regular meals and once when they skipped dinner. The calorie, protein and fat breakdown on each day were kept the same.

Blood samples were collected frequently from 7am until 9pm, which measured hormone levels, glucose and insulin concentrations, and immune cell activity.

Photo credit: Getty
Photo credit: Getty

They found that people burnt more calories when they skipped either lunch or dinner, compared to a full eating day of three meals. But they didn't find any difference in 24-hour glucose levels, insulin secretion or total physical activity between the three days.

However, glucose concentrations and markers of inflammation and insulin resistance were higher after lunch on breakfast-skipping days.

So what can we conclude from this? It seems like science is suggesting there isn't much of a difference. So if you want to wolf down some toast first thing or prefer just a strong black coffee to see you through until lunch, do what tickles your pickle.

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