The Breakfast Lie
We have been told that breakfast is the most important meal of the day, it will lift your metabolism and help you get in shape. So why is it that 80% of the women who come to Body Buzz do not get hungry until 10 am or even later?...and why is it that when they force themselves to have breakfast they gain weight? Something doesn't add up here so I decided to research this so called breakfast "truth"
For the first 2 to 3 million years that we were evolving our first meal of the day would have been after we had hunted and killed something (and we would not have been trying to spear a box of cereal). Back then two-thirds of us were getting eaten by other animals like saber tooth tigers etc. So it would have been downright silly to keep any food in the cave with us all night as we would not have wanted to attract any man eating animals to our place of safety. If there was any meat left over (highly unlikely) we would have hung it up high in a tree somewhere well away from us while we were asleep.
Breakfast was not eaten until the mid nineteenth century and then only by the very rich.
Anthropological knowledge of our hunter gatherer past tells us we did not eat breakfast.
Most of us never ate breakfast until the 20th century, our first and biggest meal of the day was "dinner" at midday. Then after a full days work, we sometimes had an evening meal. That's 2 meals a day folks (which is interesting because a lot of my ladies revert back to 2 meals a day once they start listening to their body signals rather than their conditioned beliefs). Breakfast originated from the very rich families in England in the mid 19th century. When you are so rich that you don't have to work you will find things to amuse yourself. The British well-to-do male could spend their day's hunting, shooting or fishing. Dinner (lunch time is still called "dinner" in England) in the middle of all this fun was a problem so they got the servants to lay out a buffet meal before they left home. Note that this early "dinner" (now called breakfast) was high in protein. Local game (in season), fish, fresh bread, dishes such as deviled kidneys, tea, and coffee, potted shrimp, and crab, pickled meat dishes etc. Apparently, this buffet style meal was fortification enough for a day of country pursuits (but not for a woman as they could stay in bed). Breakfast filtered down to the rest of us slowly over the next 100 years.
While we are asleep our body is resting, recovering and detoxing - we keep detoxing until about 10 am.
The balance of the hormones in your body changes throughout the day and night. In the morning your Cortisol levels are the highest they will be all day. Cortisol is the "fight or flight" hormone. Your body reacts to Cortisol by shunting blood to the extremities such as arms and legs (It's time to get out of bed and get active) and restricting blood from your organs (It's not the time to eat). Your body is still burning stored fat for fuel (ketones) because you have been fasting all night. Ketones are the very best source of energy as they have 4.5 calories per gram compared to carbohydrates (4 calories per gram) and they don't raise insulin (the fat storing hormone) In the morning your metabolism is ramped up because of high cortisol. You don't need food to lift your metabolism in the morning....its already lifted! If you don't eat breakfast you'll keep burning body fat until you get hungry (isn't that what we all want?) Your body is also still detoxifying in the morning. Bottom line...if you eat before you get hungry in the morning you will stop burning body fat and you will also cut short your natural self-cleaning mechanism!
A bowl of cereal in the morning will immediately stop fat burning and detoxifying.
Breakfast cereals are highly processed carbohydrates, full of sugar, salt, and other unhealthy substances. Any carbohydrates eaten in the morning will also start your first round of the blood sugar roller coaster that you will be stuck in for the rest of the day leading to those afternoon sweet tooth cravings and then nodding off in front of the computer. What about the fiber? - unfortunately, the fiber from grains is the wrong sort. It's full of phylates - substances that bind essential minerals and take them out of your system, contributing to mineral deficiencies (e.g. bone density problems, arthritis) Get the good soluble fiber from vegetables, nuts, and seeds. Through good marketing "Mr breakfast cereal maker" has convinced most of us that even though it goes against our natural rhythm, we should gag down some addictive, gut wrecking, sugar sweetened, insoluble fiber in the form of processed grains even when we are not hungry.
So what should we do? Don't eat until you get hungry and then eat something high in protein (and what ever fat naturally comes with it) and low in carbohydrates. Eggs are perfect for your first meal (not on toast) Then wait until you are hungry before you eat again. Your meal times may not coincide with traditional eating times such as breakfast, lunch, and dinner etc. but at least now you are eating when your body asks you to eat rather than making it eat when it is not ready.
If you are one of the few who gets hungry early in the morning then try a glass of water (you may just be thirsty). If that doesn't work try a cup of coffee or tea (which may make you burn more body fat). If that doesn't work, you need eggs or a protein shake in water. Then, of course, wait until you are hungry before you eat again.