Is skipping breakfast bad for you?

According to a study out of Sweden, opting out of breakfast may cause you to overeat for the remainder of the day. This is bad enough – ain’t nobody got time for feeling bloated. But get this: opting out of your morning meal may also affect your health later on in life. 

Researchers noted down the breakfast habits of 1000 teenagers at age 16 and then 2, 5, 15 and 25 years on. When they analysed the health of said teens 27 years later, they found that those who had reported skipping breakfast – or those who had had poor-quality breakfasts – were 68% more likely to have metabolic syndrome in middle age.

The name ‘metabolic syndrome’ is deceptive because it suggests that it’s one condition. But it’s not – it’s a lot of things that happen together including any combination of the following: obesity, high blood pressure, decreased levels of good cholesterol and insulin resistance (which causes high blood sugar). And when you get two or more of these together, your risk of developing diabetes, stroke and heart disease goes up.

The scientists who conducted the study found that poor breakfast habits at age 16 were most specifically associated with obesity and high blood-sugar levels at age 43. So, yes, it does appear that skipping breakfast is bad for you.

Maria Wennberg, the lead researcher, reiterated that while it’s certainly important to break your fast, it also matters what you break it with. Her suggestion for the ideal morning meal? Something that includes protein, healthy fat and healthy carbs like fruit or minimally processed grain.

If you’re after some inspiration, here are 3 combinations that fit the bill:

1.      An omelette with half an avocado on the side, followed by a mandarin

2.      2x poached eggs on a slice of multigrain toast, followed by a serving of natural yoghurt

3.      Smoked salmon and roast tomato on rye

Happy breakfasting! 😋 🍽️