For decades, health experts have neglected to talk about the importance of breakfast, warning those trying to keep their weight from missing the meal, but new research, led by Australian researchers, found that those who miss breakfast consume an average of 260 calories per day.
The study, published in the British Medical Journal, reported in the Telegraph newspaper that those who eat breakfast eat much more calories than those who miss the meal and end up overweight.
Previous studies have suggested that eating breakfast stimulates metabolism, and can help dieters stop eating too much later in the day.
“In fact, research shows that people who eat breakfast regularly are less likely to gain weight,” the National Health Service of the United Kingdom warned.
But the new study suggests otherwise, and found that those who do not eat breakfast do not make up for it by eating more later in the day.
The researchers also found that there was no significant difference in metabolic rates between predators and others, suggesting there was no evidence that eating breakfast could help in weight loss because of “calorie burning” early in the day.
Experts from Monash University in Melbourne, Australia, examined 13 participants, randomly selected, to study the relationship between breakfast and weight in high-income countries, including the United Kingdom.
The research follows participants from less than a month to 16 weeks.
The results found that those who missed breakfast were less weight than those who did not.
“This study suggests that adding breakfast may not be a good strategy for weight loss, regardless of the established breakfast habit,” the researchers wrote in the British Medical Journal BMJ.
“There is a need to be cautious when recommending breakfast to adult weight loss, which can have the opposite effect.”
The researchers called for further research, adding that, “While promotion has been the strongest since the last century, to consider breakfast the most important meal of the day, evidence has been revealed that eating breakfast helps to lose weight.”
However, they said breakfast could have other important effects, such as improving levels of concentration and attention in children.
Eating breakfast was the most important meal of the day, Tim Spector, a professor of genetic epidemiology at King’s College in London, said.
He pointed out that the new findings suggest that this belief was “just a myth.”