So I have been screaming about this forever now. The new magic bullet according to all the “experts” is that skipping breakfast and “fasting” until lunch is gonna get you shredded and burn all the fat. All the while little old me over here is calling bullshit. Our parents knew that breakfast was the most important meal of the day so why all of a sudden do we think we are smarter? Hell, there is even an ancient proverb: “Eat breakfast like a king, lunch like a prince and dinner like a pauper. It seems the more “science” we have available the further we get from common sense and intuition. Well today I have some science for you that confirms that our parents had it right. Breakfast is the most important meal of the day!
There was a recent study done at TAU university showing that eating a large breakfast actually expresses genes that promote weight loss. Our entire body is controlled by clocks. Timers that are controlled primarily by the light/dark cycles. The master clock is located in the suprachiasmatic nuclei (SCN) in the brain but there are peripheral clocks located in the organs and even in the fat tissue that make the entire system work harmoniously. The SCN starts off the process by prepping the digestive system to handle food but the act of eating food is what actually signals the body to synchronize the clocks and starts the process of gene expression that allow the body to become efficient at energy management. Not activating these genes has been shown to slow lipolysis (burning of fat) and increase lipogenesis (creation of new fat). Scientists in this study had people eat the exact same calories for the day but the only difference being that the one group ate a bigger breakfast and progressively smaller meals while the other group ate in the opposite pattern. Smaller breakfast with dinner being the largest meal. Not only were they able to measure the gene expression but the larger breakfast group showed greater insulin sensitivity, better glucose management while the large breakfast group had a 33% lower triglyceride level while the smaller breakfast group showed a 14% increase. Same calories, same food but dramatically different results.
Larger breakfast leads to expression of weight loss genes
Here is another study showing that eating a large breakfast with a smaller lunch and actually skipping dinner was far superior in weight loss than eating larger meals later in the day. The largest shift in BMI was experienced by those eating a large breakfast a small lunch and skipping dinner while the smallest change was from the group who skipped breakfast. Even the group eating a small breakfast and a large lunch had a better shift in BMI than those skipping breakfast. The study did show that optimal changes in BMI did occur when observing a large fasting window of approximately 18 hours but the best result was from those observing the fast from after lunch until the following breakfast. Thus why I advocate a breakfast to breakfast fast and nothing more.
Eating larger breakfast results in dramatically reduced BMI compared to skipping breakfast
These studies clearly demonstrate that our ancestors and even our parents had some sense of intuition around when it is most beneficial to eat. Somehow with all of our science we have lost this common sense. It seems the more data we look at the farther we fall from the truth. I am truly thankful that there are finally some scientists that are starting to look at ancestral patterns and view them for what they are.
Hopefully this will get you thinking about how your parents and grandparents lived and ate. They didn’t have the issues of obesity that we have today and there is something to be said about that. Science is wonderful and has saved many lives but sometimes we can’t get out of our own way. Rather than looking for new answers to old questions why don’t we look back to when the problem didn’t exist and use science to figure out how and why. New answers are not always the best answers.
If you want to get your Ketogenic Diet back to a place of Common Sense and learn how to heal your metabolism you can get personalized coaching from Coach Jack.
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9 Replies to “Breakfast is and always has been the most important meal of the day. Our parents knew this without science but here is some for you.”
Yes..please help! I’m doing it all wrong and I never feel good!
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Hello from Switzerland and thank you for your advice! I changed immediately my way of eating 2 days ago, having breakfast and lunch and then nothing until the next breakfast. I will see the results and tell you.
In the meantime, something that makes me wonder: I drink a lot everyday (2 litres) but have the feeling that I don’t pee as much as I drink. I am on keto since 5 weeks now.
2 liters of water is about right. I doubt there is an issue.
So what’s for breakfast… omelettes?
I’ve done keto for 2 months dropped 30lbs… haven’t been tracking my numbers just keeping carbs and sugar at a minimum.
Wanted to start this fasting thing your way sounds good.
Anything you would normally eat. So long as it is keto. Breakfast can be steak if you like.
Hey Jack, I am on keto for 1,5 years and last week I got my blood numbers. Should I be worried? TC is 469; LDL is 322; HDL is 135; TG are 64. Glucose was 90. I am the woman of 64, lost 7kg and feeling good. What is your opinion, please let me know, thank you, Muniba from Slovenia, Eu
I wouldn’t be concerned about it. Your HDL and your Trigs are awesome. LDL is not well correlated with any risk of anything and in fact in people over 60 it is inversly correlated with all causes of death. The higher LDL the less likely you are to die from anything.
Thank you, Jack, now I can move on, Keto on!
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