The Best Breakfast for Weight Loss
Susan C. Male, R.D.
So, did Mom know best when she told you to eat your breakfast? Of course she did.
Turns out numerous studies have shown that breakfast isn't just good for your brain; it can help you lose weight too. Researchers surmise that's because eating breakfast helps keep you full longer, reduces cravings and curbs overeating.
But what kind of breakfast is best for weight loss?
A Bigger Breakfast Is Not Better
A few years ago, research from Virginia Commonwealth University found that a big (610-calorie) breakfast that's high in protein and complex carbohydrates can help maintain and even encourage weight loss. However, a new German study counters with findings that suggest that big breakfasts are not magically slimming; in fact, more calories simply make you fatter, not fitter.
In this study, researchers at Else-Kroner-Fresenius Center of Nutritional Medicine in Munich followed 380 people and found that when people ate more at the start of the day, their bodies did not compensate by curbing intake at subsequent meals. Instead, their bodies essentially "forgot" that they had overeaten at breakfast and continued to eat the same amount of calories at lunch and dinner, resulting in an even bigger total calorie count at the end of the day.
Skipping Meals Is Not the Answer
Does this mean you should skip breakfast if you want to lose weight? No, says Marsha Hudnall, a registered dietitian and program director of Green Mountain at Fox Run in Vermont, a non-diet, healthy weight-loss spa exclusively for women. "This study definitely does not suggest that skipping breakfast is a wise move," she says. "It just suggests that large breakfasts don't help us eat less and may well end up increasing our calorie intake for the day."
Eat Better, Not Bigger
The key to healthy eating and weight loss, therefore, is not a big breakfast or no breakfast, but a better breakfast. "Weight management is much more than a matter of calories in versus calories out," says Hudnall. "The nutritional quality of what we eat, as well as our attitudes and emotions about food, all have a huge impact."
A typical breakfast contains about 1/4 of your daily calories. But more important than the size of your breakfast are the foods you choose. To that end, Hudnall suggests the following:
- Strive for a balance of healthy proteins, fats and carbs. Smart choices include: eggs, nuts, nut butters, yogurt, fruits, vegetables, and whole-grain breads and cereals, including oatmeal.
- Eat whole fruits instead of juices for the most staying power.
- Smoothies made from yogurt, fruits and nuts can provide a balanced meal in a drink. (Just be aware that calories in smoothies add up quickly.)
- Steer clear of traditional junky breakfast foods, like donuts, sweet rolls, pancakes, and sausage and bacon, all of which are high in fat and calories and low in nutrients.
- Go easy on added sweeteners in coffee or tea.
So the next time you're tempted to grab a cup of coffee and go, think again. The best breakfast provides bulk, not calories -- filling you up, not out.
Susan C. Male is a registered dietitian and freelance nutrition and health writer. She is the co-author of Foods for Better Health and the former editor of the Environmental Nutrition newsletter. Male has also written articles for Family Circle, Redbook, Child and American Health.
Available at Amazon.com:
- Experts Revisiting the Use of Antibiotics in Animal Agriculture
- Red Meat: Avoid the Processed Stuff
- What's Behind the Real-sugar Soda Movement?
- Is a juice fast a good way to lose weight?
- The Best Breakfast for Weight Loss
- Prescriptions: Don't Take A Drug Unless You Know Why
- When Pop Stars Become Pop Psychologists
- Harping on Healthy Eating Seldom Gets the Message Across
- Can Worrying Be Good for You?
- Aspirin Therapy: Safe for Sensitive Stomachs?
- Keeping Up With Vaccinations: New Guidelines Include Several Changes
- The Health Benefits of Smiling
- 4 Simple Steps to a Healthy Smile
- Do Home Tooth Remedies Really Work?
- How to Avoid Allergies This Season
- The Surprising Health Benefits of Sex
- Nutrition Is 'In the Pink' with Rhubarb
- Four Sob Stories: The Effect of Tears and Three Other Tales of Woe
- If You Choose to Take Vitamins As Supplements Stick to the RDA
- Spring-clean Your Life Guide: Detox Your Home
- The Truth About Booze: Distinguishing Fact From Fiction
- Use Bold and Beautiful Spices for Health
- Much (Well Deserved) Ado About Mangoes
- Could Fluoride Rinses Help Prevent Cavities
- Can Clutter Make You Sick?
- Medical Schools Embrace Alternative Medicine
- Pre-Existing Conditions? Health Insurance Options Improving
- Washington D.C. Tops On Well-Being Index
- Spring-clean Your Life Guide: Clean up Your Diet
- Why Eating While Distracted Can Make You Fat
- Lose Fat With Your Dentist's Help
- Heart-Healthy Foods and Supplements Show Promise To Keep Cholesterol In Check
- Urban Legends on Wine Headaches and Sensitivities Abound
- Is Coffee Bad For You? Check the Evidence Before You Decide
- Organ Donation Demystified
- Is It Alzheimer's?
- Spring-clean Your Teeth
- Can That Dental Procedure Wait?
- Yes, Doc: I Have a Dirty Mouth!
- The Only 10 iPhone Health Apps You Need
- Drinking Water Before Meals to Lose Weight
- Sleep Is Not Enough: Getting the Rest You Need
- The Great Fat Debate Continues
- Refined Carbohydrates May Be Even Worse For You Than Saturated Fat
- Guess What You Just Ate: Watch Labels For Food Additives
- How to Talk to Your Doctor
- Spring-clean to Stay Healthy
- Mindful Eating: Savoring Your Food Has Physical and Psychological Benefits
- Cholesterol That's Good for Your Brain
- Tips For Natural Allergy Relief
- Insulin Toppled As Ruler of Diabetes
- Sneaky Diet-spoilers
- Foods That Help Men Stay Healthy
- Broccoli Rabe: Broccoli's Bolder Cousin
- Aromatherapy: Simple Tips for a Healthier You
- Is Chewing Gum Good or Bad for My Teeth?
- 5 Habits to Help You Get Enough Sleep
- Understanding Headache Pain: Causes and Treatments Vary Widely
- Take the 'Small Steps' Challenge to Discover a Healthier You
- Hand-washing 101: Kill Germs, Don't Spread Them
- Pilot Safety Secrets for Dentists
- Healthy Diet Can Help Ward Off Type 2 Diabetes
- Overcoming Insomnia: Lifestyle Changes, Medication, Psychotherapy Can Help
- Everybody Say Om: The Real Powers of Meditation
- Green Veggies and Fruit Pack a Big Nutritional Punch
- Many Mouthwash Claims Don't Hold Up
- Know Your Vitamins: Vitamin K
- Health Benefits of Tea
- Spring-cleaning Checklist for Your Health
- Fasting Can Have Many Benefits for the Body
- The Glycemic Index Explained
- Letting Go of Grudges Helps Your Health
- Health and Wellness With Doctor Oz
- Foods to Boost Your Moods
- How Terrible is it to Skip Meals?
- Is Your Lunch Safe to Eat?
- Create a Healthy Diet
- 8 Foods for a Beautiful Smile
- Image Makeover Turning Coffee Into a Health Food
- Pick Blueberries for Brain Defense
- Tips to Manage Blood Sugar
- 5 Fats You Should Eat Every Day
- Does Money Buy Happiness?
- Vitamin Sources From A to K
- The Important Vitamin You May Be Forgetting
- Fill 'Er Up! Protein At Breakfast Impacts Satiety
- Preexisting Conditions Common in United States
- Talking to Teens About Marijuana: 9 Do's and Don'ts
- Break Habits That Harm the Heart
- The Pros of Probiotics: What's Good for the Belly Benefits the Brain
- Get Relief For Everyday Aches and Pains
- Seek Immediate Treatment at First Signs of Stroke
- Healthy Lifestyle Choices the Best Way to Minimize Cancer Risk
- Are Drugstore Blood-Pressure Machines Accurate?
- Get Over Your Childhood Eating Habits
- 5 Tricks That Make Your Dentist Happy
- Could You Have Bad Breath Today?
- Eat Less, Live Longer? Calorie Restriction May Boost Longevity
- How Much Protein Should I Eat?
- Are Eggs Good or Bad for You?
- Good Nutrition Vital to Maintain Healthy Immune System
- Guide to Weight Loss Success
- Eating-right Resolutions for Busy People
- Dieting Do's and Don'ts
- Secrets From the World's Healthiest Countries
- Your Cold-fighting Grocery List
- Why Stress Can Be Good for You
- Living-Donor Transplants Are Becoming More Common
- 7 Ways to Beat the Winter Blues Today
- The Dangers of Type D Personality
- Become an Imperfectionist
- 5 Daily Habits for a Healthier You
- Are Germ-killing Products Harming Your Health?
- Get a Step Ahead of Flu Season
- Healthy Lifestyle Changes You Can Make Right Now
Copyright © 2011 Studio One Networks. All rights reserved.