Study shows that eating breakfast should be moderate if you want to lose weight, scientists claims

According to the findings of recent research, eating a hearty breakfast followed by a more modest dinner might not be the most effective strategy for weight loss.

A study of adults who were overweight found that those individuals burned off the same number of calories throughout the day regardless of when they consumed the largest meal of the day.

It appears that the age-old saying about losing weight that you should “breakfast like a king, lunch like a prince, and dine like a poor” may be a fallacy.

It was hypothesized that if we consumed more calories in the morning, our bodies would have more time throughout the rest of the day to burn off those calories.

In order to put this notion to the test, researchers from Aberdeen University put 30 overweight or obese men and women on two different diets, each of which lasted for a full month.

On the first diet, they consumed the majority of their daily calories first thing in the morning, while on the second diet, they saved their largest meal for later in the day.

There was no discernible difference between the diets in terms of the amount of calories expended or the amount of weight lost. Participants shed an average of 3 kilograms (7 pounds) across both food patterns.

However, those who ate a substantial breakfast reported feeling less hungry throughout the day. This finding suggests that eating a substantial breakfast may still be an effective strategy for weight watchers.

According to the findings of recent studies, splitting your daily calorie intake between a large breakfast and a more modest dinner may not be the most effective strategy for weight loss (file)

‘The advise to breakfast like a king is one of many fallacies about how to lose weight through burning calories,’ said the lead author Professor Alexandra Johnstone, from the Rowett Institute at Aberdeen.

It would appear that the process of burning a calorie is constant no matter what time of day it is.

“However, research shows that eating a larger breakfast can help people feel less hungry during the day, which may lead to weight loss.”


• Aim to consume at least five servings of a diverse range of fruits and vegetables each and every day. All types of fruits and vegetables, including fresh, frozen, dry, and tinned options, are included.

• Make potatoes, bread, rice, pasta, or other starchy carbohydrates, preferably whole grains, the foundation of your meals.

• A daily consumption of 30 grams of fiber is equivalent to consuming the following in their entirety: five servings of fruit and vegetables, two whole-wheat cereal biscuits, two thick slices of whole-meal bread, and a big baked potato with the skin on.

• Consume some dairy products or alternatives to dairy products (such as soy drinks), picking options that are lower in sugar and fat.

• Include in your diet some legumes, fish, eggs, meat, and other sources of protein (including 2 portions of fish every week, one of which should be oily)

• Opt for oils and spreads that are unsaturated, and limit how much of them you consume.

• Aim to consume between 6 and 8 cups/glasses of water each day.

• Each day, adults should consume no more than 6 grams of salt and no more than 20 grams of saturated fat for women or 30 grams for men.

Eatwell Guide produced by the NHS.

Participants in the study had a mean age of 50 and a BMI of 32.5%; there were 16 men and 14 women in total. The study was published in the journal Cell Metabolism. Healthy individuals have a body mass index (BMI) between 18 and 25.

Every participant in the study was required to follow not one but two distinct diets, each of which lasted for a period of four weeks and consisted solely of foods and beverages supplied by the researchers.

They acquired 45% of their daily calorie intake from their first meal of the day while on the big-breakfast diet, while dinner only contributed 20% of their total daily caloric intake.

They got 45% of their daily calories from dinner when following the big-meal diet, but breakfast only contributed 20% of their total calorie intake.

People who followed any of these diets burned slightly more than 2,800 calories per day on average.

Therefore, when they were given a consistent diet consisting of approximately 1,700 calories per day, they did not burn off more calories after a large breakfast in comparison to a large dinner.

However, in the real world, when people are free to eat whatever they want after a hearty breakfast, the new findings suggests that breakfasting like a king could help people lose weight.

This is due to the fact that participants in the study reported much decreased feelings of hunger when following the big-breakfast diet.

In response to a questionnaire that inquired about how full they were feeling and how much food they were capable of eating at that time, they reported having less of an appetite.

People also had lower levels of the so-called “hunger hormone,” ghrelin, and greater levels of another hormone called GLP-1, which is known to make people feel full. This was the case when breakfast was the largest meal of the day for them.

Previous research has shown that people lose more weight when they increase the amount of food they consume in the morning. This is likely due to the fact that they will consume less food for the remainder of the day.

The participants in the new trial were given larger breakfasts than usual. For instance, the amount of bacon and eggs they were served was increased, and they also received cereal and a smoothie.

Based on an examination of the carbon dioxide in their breath, it was determined that the larger meal caused people to feel fuller for a longer period of time. It took them an average of two hours longer to digest even half of the food that they had consumed.

The researchers gave the people who participated in the study something called “heavy water” to drink, and then they evaluated the proportions of hydrogen to oxygen in the water that was left over in their urine afterward. This allowed them to determine the number of calories that were burned.

This gives an indication of how much carbon dioxide has been expelled from their bodies, which is exactly proportional to the amount of calories that have been burned.

According to Professor Johnstone, “There is no best time to eat when it comes to calories,” but eating a hearty breakfast may help you control your appetite and stay on track with your diet while you are attempting to lose weight.

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