Breakfast is often said to be the most important meal of the day, but according to a new Wednesday BMJ review, it will not help you lose weight. The study has not shown good evidence that regular eating helps us reduce calories or avoid weight gain. More intimidating, even finding some evidence that skipping breakfast in full will be better for our halves – although you probably need to find better ways to stay in the warehouse.
There are good reasons to eat early in the day, especially if you are young. Research has shown that regular eating a healthy breakfast (I mean fruit, vegetables and whole grains) helps children and teenagers to develop normally and stay sharp at school. Many public health organizations and doctors in a similar way recommend adding a healthy breakfast in your routine as a way to prevent obesity or promote weight loss.
The theory behind this advice is simple: eating will soon accelerate your metabolism and will protect you from feeling hungry and overeating in later meals. There is evidence of this theory from some studies. These studies are usually observational, which means that they only require indirect associations between two things (in this example, eating or skipping breakfast and losing weight or less obesity) into a decent-sized group of people. But in the past few years, some randomized and controlled trials – often considered to be the gold standard of evidence – have failed to find the same link.
"The problem is that those who eat breakfast tend to be different from those who do not. Therefore, the problem with observational studies is that it may not be a breakfast that eats, which is good, but a wider healthy lifestyle and the choice of food resulting with benefits of weight, "says author Flaviya Cycutrini, an epidemiologist at Monsan University in Australia, told Gizmodo via e-mail.
Cicuttini and her team decided to complete and analyze as very relevant clinical trials on the subject, as they can help resolve the issue, something that scientists call meta-analysis. They looked at 13 trials conducted in the United States, the United Kingdom, and Japan between 1992 and 2016, which collectively studied more than 500 adults with a different body mass index and weight. Some of the tests tested if adding or skipping breakfast can affect weight; others watched whether breakfast would affect the total calories of a person in a day.
"We found that those who ate breakfast had a tendency to eat about 260 extra calories per day and averaged 0.44 pounds [roughly a pound], "Ciccutini said." It is important that there was no evidence to improve metabolism in those who ate breakfast or that they are less likely to overeat later in the day. "
This model was held no matter where the studies were taking place or how many volunteers measured them.
The authors added that their findings should not be taken as definitive. For one, the overall quality of the evidence they have considered is considered to be low. Several of the studies have blinded the volunteers, which means they know whether they eat breakfast or not. Granted, it may be difficult to hide from practically hiding it, but studies also rarely dazzle researchers who have to measure and calculate the results they have received from volunteers – another science does not. All studies, found by the team, also had a high or vague risk of bias.
The authors say it will take more research, preferably from large, high-quality trials, to be completely confident about anything. But, meanwhile, Cycutrini said there are clear bins that the average person should have from their research.
"The key message is that if a person wants to eat breakfast, that's fine," she said. "However, there is no evidence that we should encourage people to change their diet scheme to include breakfast in order to prevent weight gain or obesity … Can do the opposite!"