Breakfast - touted since ages as the meal of the day to rev up metabolism and aid in weight loss, seems to have fallen from grace. A study published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition reported that eating or skipping breakfast has no discernible effect on weight loss in adults who were attempting to shed pounds.
To test the relative effectiveness of a recommendation to eat or skip breakfast on weight loss in adults trying to lose weight, Emily Dhurandhar and her team, conducted a 16-week, multisite study on 283 adults with BMI ranging from 25 to 40, and aged between 20 and 65 years. The participants were divided into a control group, experimental group who ate breakfast, and experimental group who skipped breakfast.
AdvertisementThe researchers found that treatment assignment did not have a significant effect on weight loss, and there was no interaction between initial breakfast eating status and treatment.
Many diet and nutrition experts differ.
'Skipping breakfast is not an option. It is our first meal after 10-12 hours of rest and skipping it could lead to acidity, ulcers and eventually a loss of appetite,' says Dr. A. Laxmaiah, Deputy Director, National Institute of Nutrition.
'Breakfast is the most important meal of the day because it signals the body to wake up and start burning calories,' says Tanya Zuckerbrot, Nutritionist.
Skipping breakfast is bad for your health and weight loss. Not eating breakfast may up-regulate your appetite because if you don't get the required nutrients, your body tries to make it up during the day and you tend to overeat. This could possibly lead to weight gain over time. Further, skipping breakfast has been linked to poor overall diet quality.
More importantly, various studies have shown that consuming regular breakfast reduces the risk of chronic diseases including diabetes and cardiovascular disease.
Studies have also found that health breakfast consumption improves learning abilities and promotes better school performance in children.
In short, a healthy lifestyle that includes balanced diet and regular exercise could probably be the secret of weight loss.
Healthy breakfast recipes
Here are a couple of healthy breakfast ideas to start your day:
1. Spinach and parmesan omelet
Don't have the time for elaborate breakfast? Here's a quick but healthy low calorie breakfast.
• 1 cup chopped spinach
• 1 tablespoon chopped scallion
• 2 eggs
• Tabasco sauce
• 2 tsp parmesan cheese
• Sauté the spinach and scallion for a minute or so in a pan.
• Beat eggs with a dash of tabasco, and add to the pan.
• Cook for 2 minutes or till the eggs are cooked through.
• Flip and add 2 tsp grated parmesan and cook for 15 to 30 seconds.
• Serve with one slice toasted oat bread (or multigrain bread) and half a cup of grapes (or an apple or pear).
2. Cabbage and spinach roti
You may play around with the ingredients if you like, for example, you can use bajra or other millets in lieu of besan and maize; or use carrots and beans as vegetables.
• ¾ cup whole wheat flour
• ¼ cup maize (makkai) flour
• ¼ cup besan (gram flour)
• 1/3 cup finely grated cabbage
• ¼ cup finely chopped spinach
• Milk for binding the dough
• Salt, lemon juice, and green chilies to taste
• Combine all the ingredients and knead into a soft dough using sufficient milk.
• Divide the dough into 6 portions and using a rolling pin make rotis out of the portions.
• Cook each roti in a pan till both sides are cooked. You can use a little ghee if you prefer.
• Serve hot with ginger pickle.