Eating breakfast to lose weight 'may not help'

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The researchers also found no significant difference in metabolic rates between breakfast eaters and breakfast skippers - suggesting there is no evidence that eating it may help with weight loss due to "efficient" burning of calories earlier in the day.

Study authors conclude that, "Currently, the available evidence does not support modifying diets in adults to include the consumption of breakfast as a good strategy to lose weight".

Many of us grew up being told breakfast is the most important meal of the day.

"If a person likes to eat breakfast, that is fine... there is no reason to change", she said.

Meanwhile this new study, conducted by Monash University researchers, used evidence from 13 randomised controlled trials in developed countries, including the US, UK, Australia, New Zealand and Japan over 28 years to determine the effect of regularly eating breakfast on weight change and daily energy intake.

The researchers found that "the people who eat breakfast tend to have on average 260 calories a day extra and they tend to be heavier", Cicuttini said, regardless of the participants being used to having regularly breakfast or not.

That means those who ate breakfast did not lose any weight.

However, the authors stress that the quality of the evaluated studies is not very high.

If you're trying to lose weight you've probably been told not to skip breakfast, as it could make you hungrier later in the day.

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The findings fly in the face of the common consensus that skipping breakfast only leads to snacking on calorie-dense, less sustaining snacks later in the day. Another question relates to whether breakfast is a necessary component in weight loss strategies.

The scientists aren't the first to challenge the supposed link between eating breakfast and weight loss.

Provides many beneficial nutrients, and boosts your fibre and calcium intake (compared to no breakfast).

The findings of the Monash University research team suggest that skipping breakfast might in fact be a good way to reduce total daily calorie intake.

Previous studies have suggested that eating breakfast revs up the metabolism and can help dieters stop overeating later in the day.

However, Spector (himself a breakfast eater) acknowledged that time-restricted feeding is a "young discipline" that may only prove effective for "certain people".

'Eating a meal in the morning - and it doesn't need to be immediately after waking - helps to restore blood sugar levels which will have fallen overnight, ' explains nutritionist and founder of employee wellbeing company Elevate, Ruth Tongue.

The trainer to stars such as Margot Robbie, Claudia Schiffer, and Colin Firth is an advocate of time-restricted eating, also known as intermittent fasting, whereby you limit your window of consumption to, ideally, eight hours.

Coe, who was not involved in the research, added that a healthy breakfast is "just one part of a healthy, balanced lifestyle".

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