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Health Myths Debunked: Is Breakfast the Most Important Meal of the Day?

Kayla Reynolds, MS

The Myth

Breakfast is the most important meal of the day.

The Background

Whether your mom, a fitness magazine, a diet ad, or a friend, you’ve long been told never to skip breakfast — it’s “the most important meal of the day.” This is a great example of how complicated science gets oversimplified.

The Facts

First, let’s address that some people think that skipping breakfast will help you lose weight. Why? Simple math. To lose weight, you need to eat fewer calories. To eat fewer calories, you can simply fewer meals. To eat fewer meal, you can skip one.

Many think that skipping breakfast will lead to weight gain. People who are #TeamBreakfast will show you studies that show people who eat breakfast are leaner than those who don’t. They’ll also show your studies that say that people who eat breakfast are better able to maintain weight loss. Unfortunately, those studies don’t show that eating breakfast causes weight loss or weight maintenance — they simply demonstrate that breakfast is associated with the two. However, people who eat breakfast and able to maintain a healthy weight also have other healthy habits that are likely to contribute to this association.

The facts? No one is right. Research shows that eating breakfast will not cause weight loss or weight gain. It’s a lot more complicated than that…

The Bottom Line

While breakfast may not a magical meal, it’s also not the enemy. Whether eating a meal first thing in the morning is a good weight loss strategy largely depends on you!

For some people, eating a nutrition, well-balanced breakfast can help set a good tone to the day, keep their hunger at bay, and prevent them from overeating later in the day. For these people, breakfast could very well be the most important meal of the day.

For others who may not wake up hungry, holding off to eat their first meal until a bit later in the day can help them save calories for when they have more of an appetite. For these people, skipping breakfast may just be the key to weight loss success.

No one should wait until they’re overly hungry to eat. This is when poor food choices come into play and we tend to overeat…

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  • Lorri Dunlap

    Noom needs to proofread it’s content before publishing! The mistakes are obnoxious.