There are a few basic rules in life that children repeat: look both ways before crossing the road, don’t talk to strangers, and breakfast is the most important meal of the day.
There is some evidence that children who do not eat breakfast are more likely to be less physically active and have lower cardio-respiratory fitness levels – because they tend to gain weight on processed snacks and because they don’t have as much energy ready to burn.
And a healthy breakfast (including protein for sustained energy release) is proven to have a positive effect on learning, thinking, and behavior.
The benefits have been demonstrated primarily in children from poor families fed charity breakfasts. It’s not the time of day that matters most: it’s what you eat.
The main benefit of feeding your kids breakfast (a bowl of oats will do) is having some control over what they put in their mouths.
Greasy, sweet and salty snacks are ruinous as a staple food: this is another rule that is sometimes mentioned to children without much effect.
That one in seven Australian children is skipping breakfast is a matter of concern. Because it suggests that they get their energy needs from waste.
What matters most is what your children eat overall through the day.
You’ve heard it all before: whole grains, fruits and vegetables, low-fat protein, and a healthy dose of brain-healthy fat.
Is skipping breakfast important?
A new study suggests that adults who skip breakfast “are likely to miss out on key nutrients most abundant in the foods that make up morning meals.”
This discovery came from data on more than 30,000 American adults.
Those who skipped breakfast lacked calcium in milk, vitamin C in fruit, and fiber, vitamins and minerals in fortified cereals – and were likely to “stay lacking these nutrients for the whole time.” the day “.
Researchers found that people who skipped breakfast tended to have a very different nutritional profile than those who ate a morning meal.
The skippers have tended, on the whole, not to reach the nutritional threshold.
“What we’re finding is that if you don’t eat the foods that are commonly eaten for breakfast, you tend not to eat them the rest of the day. So these common breakfast nutrients become a nutritional gap, ”said Dr. Christopher Taylor, professor of medical dietetics at the Ohio State University College of Medicine and lead author of the study.
The study was funded by the American Dairy Association Mideast.
The data represented a single day in the life of each participant – meaning we cannot conclude that participants always skipped breakfast, but it was apparently a representative sample of the national population.
Researchers note that many breakfast foods are fortified with minerals, vitamins, and other micronutrients.
They say it replaces the nutrients “that are lost in the refining process.” Which suggests that processed grains are not that good for you.
What this study really tells us is that some people subscribe to poor nutrition around the clock, not just in the morning.
So breakfast is not the most important meal of the day?
It makes sense to have fuel in the tank before embarking on a busy day.
But there are intermittent fasters who skip breakfast as part of a diet that may benefit their health.
Some will compensate for skipping breakfast with a healthy diet. Others don’t.
The bottom line for adults is the same as it is for children – it’s what you typically eat throughout the day that matters most.