Why breakfast is the most important meal of the day

To breakfast, or not to breakfast? That is the question! With all the fad diets and intermittent fasting theories doing the rounds, it’s no surprise that many of us are left to wonder whether tucking into our morning oats is doing us any good. Let us answer this for you: YES! It is the most important meal of the day, and here’s why.

1. Timing

Timing is everything. We should all be aiming to consume around 15–25% of our daily energy intake at breakfast (i.e., 300–500 kilojoules for women and 375–625 for men), so that our bodies can burn it throughout the day.

2. Keep your metabolism running

Skipping the first meal of the day can have serious health consequences, causing blood sugar and energy levels to spike and dip – something that can result in weight gain. Not only that, but by skipping breakfast, you’re coaching your body not to expect food intake early on, which only succeeds in slowing down your metabolism.

3. What’s in the box?

Remember, while breakfast is undeniably important, what you choose to fill your cereal bowl with is ultimately going to make all the difference. If cereal is your thing, it’s important to look at the cereal box and check what’s in it, taking particular note of the sugar content, preservatives, colourants and overall nutritional content.

4. Starting strong

While cereal and fruit are commonly accepted breakfast foods, you’ll be far better prepared to face the day by consuming low GI, high protein meals, that’ll keep your energy levels up for longer. Think veggies, protein and slow-release carbohydrates. Add a fruit and some good fats to help stop blood sugar fluctuations and keep you feeling fuller all morning, and help you avoid dangerous snacking situations.

5. What is breakfast ‘time’?

For many of us, the thought of eating early in the morning can be an unwelcome prospect. And while it’s certainly advisable to eat as early as possible, thus giving your body more time to burn off the associated calories, you’ll be doing your health a favour as long as you manage to get that first meal down before 10am.