Obesity & Breakfast

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According to a new weight health study, people who regularly eat breakfast are less likely to develop diabetes or become obese than people who start the day on an empty stomach.

55 Percent Less Likely to Become Obese or Diabetic

Research from the study suggests that breakfast eaters are up to 55 percent less likely to have problems with insulin resistance or become obese than non-breakfast-eating people.

Although the best results came from eating whole-grain cereals and other nutritious breakfast items, “eating breakfast at all was preferential to not eating,” says Linda Van Horn, a professor of preventive medicine at Northwestern University and one of the authors of the study.

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Someone who eats something early in the morning is less likely to fill up on sweet treats later in the day, she says. Van Horn notices she is much more tempted by the doughnuts around the coffee pot when she hasn’t eaten something at home. When people eat something first thing in the morning, they “don’t tend to fill up later on a whole lot of food,” she says.

The researchers used data from people enrolled in the Coronary Artery Risk Development in Young Adults (CARDIA) study, which started in 1992. Those enrolled at the start of the study were 25 to 37 years of age. The study included 1,884 black and 2,059 white people who reported on their breakfasting (or lack thereof), and who were tested for insulin resistance. The participants were assessed for obesity, abnormal glucose, elevated blood pressure and lipid values over an eight-year period.

Although brand names of products or amounts ingested were not reported, participants were asked how often they ate breakfast, and to identify what they ate by groupings, such as hot cereal, processed cold cereals and the like. Forty-seven percent of whites and 22 percent of blacks reported regularly eating breakfast.

When compared to those who did not breakfast regularly, those who did were 37 percent to 55 percent less likely to develop insulin resistance syndrome – frequently a precursor to diabetes – and to become obese. They are also possibly less likely to develop heart disease, since diabetes often leads to heart disease, Van Horn says.

Breakfast-Eating – A Successful Weight Control Strategy

iBreakfast-eating is also a habit shared by successful weight-losers registered with the US National Weight Control Registry.

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