We all know eating breakfast is important. But, we've got information as to why eating protein at breakfast is better.
We've heard multiple times from multiple people that the most important meal of the day is breakfast. What we haven’t known until recently, however, is that there’s no scientific support.
Heather Leidy, professor at the University of Missouri, tells us the importance of eating protein at breakfast. There’s a strong association between skipping breakfast and obesity. “With more breakfast skipping occasions there is an increase in BMI”, says Leidy. Eating a protein rich breakfast could be the key to helping you maintain a healthy BMI.
Protein Breakfast Study
The Department of Nutrition at the University of Missouri conducted a study which showed that individuals who skipped breakfast incorporated high-protein and healthy breakfast meals in their diet. The study tried to determine if breakfast can immediately affect appetite control, sustain one’s appetite through out the day and reduce food cravings.
The department recruited 20 overweight adolescent girls who skipped breakfast. Girls were selected because, according to Leidy, girls skip breakfast more than boys. A head-to-head comparison was conducted with cereals, since it’s commonly consumed for breakfast, and it was compared to a high-protein egg and beef-based breakfast meal.
The target population followed three breakfast patterns. They either skipped breakfast, consumed normal protein cereals for six days or consumed beef and egg-based breakfast for six days. On the seventh day, a test was done where blood samples were taken and appetite, sensation of hunger and fullness were measured throughout the day.
People tend to overeat and snack unhealthily. Before dinner, a Functional Magnetic Resonance Imaging, or fMRI, technique was used to identify each girl’s neuro activity in response to the signals that control their food cravings. The girls were given a cooler with healthy and unhealthy foods and snacks to determine if breakfast had an impact on their choices later in the day.
The study found that eating a breakfast rich in protein leads to improvements in appetite control, the reduction of food cravings, can significantly reduce snacking in the evening, and ultimately lead to weight loss.