It often seems like there’s never enough time in the morning to prepare yourself a meal. Wouldn’t you rather be getting a few more minutes of shut eye than slave over a stove? Isn’t it better to beat the morning traffic than spend some time cutting up fruit? Many of us aren’t even hungry in the morning, or crave little more than a cup or three of coffee.
Though it may not seem like a big deal, skipping breakfast can be very detrimental to your health, your mind and your waistline. Skipping breakfast may shave off a few minutes of your day, but it could also shave off years of your life. Click through to read about the benefits of eating breakfast — hey, there’s a reason your mom called it the most important meal of the day!
1. Shed Those Extra Pounds.
If you want to lose a few pounds, skipping breakfast is one of the worst things you can do. Though it may seem counter-intuitive at first, breakfast skippers tend to crave fattier foods and eat more than they would have during the rest of the day. Don’t skip breakfast — your gut will thank you for it!
2. Get all Your Fruits and Veggies.
A diet heavy in fruits and vegetables is a healthy diet. And what better time to up your intake of fresh produce than breakfast time? Fruit salads, fruit and veggie smoothies, vegetables in your omelet or tofu scramble.. the options are endless!
3. Have More Energy.
Feeling sluggish and tired after skipping breakfast? There’s good reason for that. When you wake up, your blood sugar is at its lowest point in the day. Without that vital fuel, your body isn’t in the best shape it can be. Studies have shown that eating breakfast actually makes your blood sugar and insulin levels rise more slowly throughout the day, and can thus make you less likely to “crash” from all the ups and downs your blood sugar and insulin takes.
4. Improve Your Heart’s Health.
Studies have shown that people who eat breakfast have lower cholesterol levels, smaller waist lines, and less insulin in their blood. Now, that’s not solely because they eat the most important meal of the day — breakfast eaters tend to make healthier lifestyle choices than people who don’t. Though studies haven’t conclusively linked eating breakfast with healthier hearts, it is very likely a component of a heart-healthy diet.
5. Boost Your Immune System.
It’s cold and flu season, and many of us are on the lookout for ways to avoid getting sick. Is a hearty breakfast the key to combating the cold? Well, one study suggests that a large meal first thing in the day just might help. Researchers in the Netherlands looked at the difference in immunity between men that ate a 1,200 calorie breakfast versus men that didn’t eat any breakfast. The breakfast eaters upped their intake of a natural antiviral agent known gamma interferon, by 450%. The men that didn’t eat breakfast saw their levels of the antiviral drop by 17%. 1,200 calories a huge meal, of course, and research needs to be done to see if a smaller number of calories can have a similar immunity-boosting affect.
6. Get Your Mind Going.
Can’t focus on those spreadsheets in the AM? Don’t reach for that second cup of coffee. Time and again, studies have shown the positive impact that eating a healthy and balanced breakfast has on our brain’s ability to function — boosting your concentration and short-term memory.
7. Live Longer.
We’ve already seen how eating breakfast can boost your overall health — from brain power to immunity, slimmer waistlines to a healthier heart. Eating breakfast may not be a cure-all, but it certainly is a crucial component of a healthier lifestyle, and a longer life.