Maybe your grandmother called breakfast the most important meal of the day, but think again. Today’s health experts question the old wisdom.
By Izabella Santana
Despite popular belief, breakfast is not the most important meal of the day. Morning meals should be based on a matter of personal preference and whether that person can sustain energy throughout the day without it, most health experts say.
Breakfast can enhance awareness and intellectual focus, even a person’s behavior.
The power of these foods is gained through the energy they provide. Because usually a person waits six or more hours between meals, lack of food slows down metabolism.
But eating an early meal isn’t the only way to speed up metabolism. A study conducted by the Center of Obesity Research reports that a 15-minute walk can create as much energy as breakfast does.
Christina Duong, SAC health educator agrees it depends on the individual, and not what media and marketing promote.
Not everyone can follow the same diet and receive the same benefits. Some may be able to function without breakfast, others might not.
“Basically, in the world of nutrition, health and fitness, any tips, fad diets and advice you’re given should be taken with a grain of salt because everybody is different,” Duong said.
The more-or-less necessity of breakfast depends on if the person feels they need it to function throughout the day.
“I don’t think it’s the most important meal, but students should eat before class because your stomach will growl and can distract you from learning. Not eating before class will leave you hungry during the entire period,” said sophomore Sandra Montoya, who usually skips breakfast.
Many people also associate eating or skipping breakfast with weight loss, but studies are inconclusive. A study in the Italian Journal of Pediatrics suggests overweight and obese subjects should reduce their breakfast caloric intake.
Another study published in the Nutrition Journal stated that obesity was higher among breakfast skippers, due to later binging.
“The flip side is if you get too hungry during lunch, typically you’ll end up eating more at lunch. So it’s pretty much a counting game,” Duong said.
While breakfast is still regarded as an important meal by many health experts, any meal someone eats should be important because of its nutritional benefits, not because of the time of day.