Ditch Breakfast For Weight Loss — Or Not?

More than 54 percent of people in the U.S. have a weight loss goal, according to a recent Gallup poll. Recently, The Inquisitr covered a study that suggested eating fruits and vegetables doesn’t promote weight loss. Now, a study published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition claims that eating breakfast is unrelated to weight loss.

What? Breakfast is an American institution, or as USA Today put it:

“Grandmothers, marketers and researchers alike have long touted breakfast as a must-have meal, praising its ability to rev up metabolism, stave off hunger, help calorie watchers keep their weight in check and improve concentration and cognitive function.”

But weight loss researchers at the University of Alabama at Birmingham disagree.

The study followed 300 volunteers who were trying to lose weight. They assigned people to either eat breakfast, skip breakfast, or just continue with their current habit (whether eating breakfast or not).

Sixteen weeks later, the 300 people literally weighed in — no one had lost much weight, only about a pound per person. Researchers interpreted this to mean that breakfast won’t necessarily lead to weight loss… or could it simply mean those 300 people weren’t good at losing weight?

Breakfast and weight loss are topics of much research. The New York Times reports a similar experiment that showed breakfast was unrelated to weight loss, resting metabolic rates, cholesterol, and blood sugar:

“Contrary to popular belief, skipping breakfast had not driven volunteers to wolf down enormous lunches and dinners — but it had made them somewhat more sluggish first thing in the morning.”

According to the NIH, the best way to lose weight still hasn’t changed: eat less and exercise more. Setting weight loss goals is also an essential step:

“Useful [weight loss] goals should be:(1) specific; (2) attainable (doable); and (3) forgiving (less than perfect). ‘Exercise more’ is a great goal, but it’s not specific. ‘Walk 5 miles every day’ is specific and measurable, but is it doable if you’re just starting out? ‘Walk 30 minutes every day’ is more attainable, but what happens if you’re held up at work one day and there’s a thunderstorm during your walking time another day? ‘Walk 30 minutes, 5 days each week’ is specific, doable, and forgiving. In short, a great goal!”

[Image courtesy of Weight Loss Tips ]