I can probably count on one hand the amount of times I have skipped breakfast. And for those times I have missed it, it's likely that somewhere along the way I have had two breakfasts in one day, so In fact, I have probably earn myself some breakfast in lieu.
But understandably, breakfast time is not always going to be the most Zen inspiring time of day. If you have kids, the gym, a hectic work schedule or are just dead-set bad at mornings, then the idea of consistently getting breakfast nailed may seem like a foreign one.
But a lions share of research shows that people who eat breakfast are more likely to maintain a healthy weight, especially when the meal is protein based. Include a low GI source of carbohydrates and a bit of healthy fat in there and your blood sugar levels are going to be stable, plus your chances of avoiding that 10.30 am banana bread just got better!
What about IF (Intermittent Fasting) I hear it's advocates holler from the stand!? This is a style of eating has become popularised by the 5:2 diet written by Dr. Michael Mosely. IF is said to mimic the way in which our predecessor would have eaten, with days when food was plentiful followed by periodic days without food. Fasting gives our digestive system a chance to rest and rejuvenate, while on a cellular undertaking ‘autophagy’, the biological term for when our body clean up aged or dead cell debris to make way for new foundations. There are many formats for fasting which can look like 8 hour feeding windows followed by 16 hours of fasting including sleep), 2 days a week of 500-800 calories then free eating teh other days (as per teh 5:2 diet), full day fasting going from dinner to dinner without food, reducing just protein intake for a period of time, and many more variations on these themes.
Look, I have given it a go for a few weeks in the past, and can't speak for everyone, but it made me a bit preoccupied about food, which is the last thing you want when trying to lose weight or change your health habits! Also, I found concentrating on tasks difficult, especially as I get pretty ga-ga if my blood sugar levels drop. However, it did remind me that I don't need to fear hunger- I can go without and be ok. There are many anecdotes of very clear focus with fasting, but for me, it was not a long term change I could implement.
There are some people who find fasting an easier way to manage weight because they don't need to count calories, which is fine, and some who undertake regular fasting for long term health/longevity reasons. I would still recommend that anyone looking to trial intermittent fasting consult with a health professional to ensure they have all of the correct relevant information before jumping in. After-all, it is just a tool in the nutrition tool box- not for everyone, but might be for some people.
I would also pose the idea that if you ate dinner at 7.30 pm, sleep for 8 hours a night, and eat at about 7.30 am, there is a level of fasting is in-built to your day anyway (break-the-fast anyone?). After all, sleep is all about giving our bodies a chance to regenerate, recollect and reboot...
Food for thought, but back to breakfast.