Some research suggests that regularly eating a healthy breakfast may help you lose excess weight and maintain your weight loss. But other research suggests that skipping breakfast may not be bad for you and may also help with weight control.
For many people, breakfast may be beneficial in the following ways:
- Reduced hunger. Eating breakfast may reduce your hunger later in the day, which may make it easier to avoid overeating. When you skip breakfast, you may feel ravenous later and be tempted to reach for a quick fix — such as vending machine candy or doughnuts. In addition, eating breakfast may reduce cravings, especially for sweets and fats.
- Healthy choices. Eating breakfast may get you on track to make healthy choices all day. People who eat breakfast tend to be more mindful of their diets.
- More energy. A healthy breakfast refuels your body and replenishes the glycogen stores that supply your muscles with immediate energy. Routinely skipping breakfast is associated with decreased physical activity.
More research is needed to understand the connection between breakfast eating habits and weight control. If you're trying to lose weight, it's important to find a method that works for you. Talk to your doctor or dietitian about an eating plan that will get you to your goals.
Aug. 26, 2020
See more Expert Answers
- Chowdhury EA, et al. The causal role of breakfast in energy balance and health: A randomized controlled trial in obese adults. American Journal of Clinical Nutrition. 2016;103:747.
- Kahleova H, et al. Meal frequency and timing are associated with changes in body mass index in Adventist Health Study 2. Journal of Nutrition. 2017;147:1722.
- Iqbal K, et al. Breakfast quality and cardiometabolic risk profiles in an upper middle-aged German population. European Journal of Clinical Nutrition. 2017;71:1312.
- Chowdhury EA, et al. Postprandial metabolism and appetite do not differ between lean adults that eat breakfast or morning fast for 6 weeks. Journal of Nutrition. 2018;148:13.
- Zhang L, et al. The association between breakfast skipping and body weight, nutrient intake, and metabolic measures among participants with metabolic syndrome. Nutrients. 2017;9:384.
- Fayet-Moore F, et al. Impact of breakfast skipping and breakfast choice on the nutrient intake and body mass index of Australian children. Nutrients. 2016;8:487.
- Scaglioni S, et al. Factors influencing children's eating behaviors. Nutrients. 2018;10:706.
- Berg JM, et al. Glycogen metabolism. In: Biochemistry. 5th ed. New York, N.Y.: Macmillan Learning; 2002.
- Mundi MS (expert opinion). Mayo Clinic, Rochester, Minn. Aug. 1, 2018.