If you want to be a better person in 2017, please stop bullying people into eating breakfast. For a century, thanks to the food companies, we have supposed breakfast to be the most important meal of the day, a meal we should eat like a king.
And over those 100 years we’ve got fatter and fatter, such that today two thirds of us are overweight or even obese. Increasing numbers of us, moreover, suffer from type 2 diabetes and hypertension. Are these coincidences? No.
Mornings are when people, generally, are least hungry, which is Nature’s way of protecting us from a dangerous meal. Breakfast is dangerous because of a quirk in our blood sugar levels, which are highest in the mornings. And high blood sugar levels are not only in themselves dangerous, when they are further raised by eating breakfast they fuel hunger mid-morning and mid-afternoon: many a mid-morning muffin and mid-afternoon teacake is eaten because of the metabolic trauma of breakfast.
The myth is that eating breakfast fills us up, so we eat less later, but when researchers do the experiment they find that people who eat breakfast simply eat more – actually quite a lot more – over the course of the day.
Some people feel they cannot function without eating in the mornings, and their feelings should of course be respected, but most folk can function perfectly well – in fact, generally much better – without a morning meal. Yet too many of us are harangued by well-meaning but misguided breakfast vigilantes into swallowing a meal we do not need, to the detriment of our health.
If you are one of those vigilantes, please desist for 2017. You’ll be a better person for it.
Words from Terence Kealey
Breakfast is a Dangerous Meal is out now.
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