Your day starts early, and you try to think of a healthy breakfast. It’s a constant rush, your mind racing ahead of your body with no time to rest.
You don’t have time for the simple pleasures – coffee with friends, reading a magazine, taking a break. But there’s one thing that you absolutely, categorically must prioritize – or risk falling flat on your face. That one thing is . . .
Why A Healthy Breakfast Is Important
Breaking the Fast: Think about the word . . . break fast. You’ve been fasting for up to 12 hours while you’ve been sleeping. Your body is in need of sustenance in order to maintain it’s anabolic (muscle preserving) state. Keep on fasting and your likely to enter a catabolic state (muscle depleting) where your body draws upon it’s own reserves to supply energy.
Vital Nutrients: Apart from energy, a decent breakfast will provide you with vital nutrients such as calcium, iron and B vitamins. It also provides protein and fibre. For most people, if you don’t get a healthy dose of protein and fibre in the morning, you won’t make up for it later in the day.
Promoting Fat Loss: A recent study out of the University of Nottingham in the U.K showed how beneficial a high fibre breakfast is for weight loss.
The study involved a group of healthy women who had recently begun exercising.
Scientists studied post-exercise fat-oxidation after eating breakfast. Half of the women were given a high-glycemic index or a low-glycemic index breakfast.
The two varieties of breakfast had similar amounts of protein, carbohydrate and dietary fibre, but differed in the sources of fibre. The low-glycemic group contained breakfast contained 3.5 grams of fibre from muesli, milk, yogurt and canned peaches while the high-glycemic index breakfast contained 1.5 grams of fibre from cornflakes and milk, white bread, jam and a carbonated glucose drink.
Three hours after eating their breakfasts, the two groups of women, who had an average age of 24, walked for 60 minutes at a moderate intensity.
The women who had consumed the low-glycemic index breakfast showed higher fat and lower total carbohydrate oxidation while exercising. The total fat oxidation level of the low-glycemic index group was 7.4 grams per hour compared to just 3.7 grams per hour for the high glycemic-index group.
For the low-glycemic index group, the total carbohydrate oxidation level was 42.5 grams per hour compared to a level of 51.6 grams per hour for the high-glycemic index group.
The women on the low-glycemic index breakfast also reported feeling more full after eating the exact same lunch foods and portions as the high glycemic-index group.
The conclusions drawn from the study are that a high-fibre healthy breakfast that includes low-glycemic index foods not only helps to increase fat burning when coupled with exercise within several hours but also makes a person feel fuller for longer.
Brain Energy: Eating a healthy breakfast will also make you more mentally alert. When you eat breakfast, your glucose levels are restored as a result of taking in complex carbohydrates. This provides much needed energy to the brain.
It doesn’t matter how busy you are – a healthy breakfast MUST be a non-negotiable part of your day. Not only will it set your body up for the demands of the coming day, but it will boost your fat loss efforts while fuelling your muscles for growth and recovery.